It’s hard to know what the business world will look like after this pandemic is finally behind us, but at the moment, one thing is for sure – local businesses are struggling. As we approach our third month of closed doors and stay-at-home orders, those who make a living feeding and serving customers everyday are being forced to adapt, whether that means boosting their takeout/delivery offerings or reaching more potential customers online. Throughout the Thriver community and around the world, supporting local businesses is on everyone’s mind right now.

Our mission at Thriver has always been to help local mom & pop shops grow their business by providing them with greater exposure, technology and support that enables them to handle larger-scale orders without having to expand their operations. Even during a pandemic we’re still on a mission to help our partners thrive, and our Partner Success team has been working overtime to develop creative solutions to help them weather the storm. Since we know that others are looking for guidance on how to support local businesses, we thought it would be worth sharing some of our initiatives here for inspiration. 

1. Serving office meals without the office.

Right now a lot of companies are using Thriver cards to support their remote meal programs, and employees are using their funds to order food from local restaurants. Thriver Card is a customizable prepaid employee card that allows company admins to control the funds, while employees can spend however they like within their plan. Data from current Thriver Card users shows customized ordering and local options are what employees want; most employees are using their card to get their favourite dish from their favourite local spot delivered right to their door. Not only are these remote lunch programs keeping employees feeling connected to the office-life they’re missing, but they’re keeping revenue flowing for all of those local restaurants. https://bit.ly/39B5H0J Right now a lot of companies are using Thriver cards to support their remote meal programs, and employees are using their funds to order food from local restaurants. Thriver Card is a customizable prepaid employee card that allows company admins to control the funds, while employees can spend however they like within their plan. Data from current Thriver Card users shows customized ordering and local options are what employees want; most employees are using their card to get their favourite dish from their favourite local spot delivered right to their door. Not only are these remote lunch programs keeping employees feeling connected to the office-life they’re missing, but they’re keeping revenue flowing for all of those local restaurants.

2. Championing the care package.

Care packages are a great way to support anyone during these challenging times; just a little box of thoughtful items to get you through isolation. A lot of our partners are offering care packages full of locally ground coffee and snacks, fresh baked goods, home office supplies and decor, and they’re proving to be a popular way for our clients to keep their remote employees feeling fueled and cared for. The more companies discover the value of care packages, the more we can support local businesses who offer them.

3. Fueling those who need it most.

Beyond our restaurant and catering partners, we’re also doing what we can to support non-profit organizations. In normal times, our partnership with Replate enables our clients to have their catering leftovers be delivered to local organizations supporting those experiencing food insecurity. Currently we’re partnering with Replate to facilitate food donations from our partners to organizations in need like hospitals, food banks and shelters. If you’re looking for a way to give back to your community, let us know and we can help.

4. Cooking up a tribute.

Another way we’re supporting local businesses is by simply raising awareness about them; keeping them top of mind, driving delivery orders, and exposing them to new potential customers. One project we have in the works is a special edition recipe book featuring some of our partners’ favourite dishes. This book is for our customers, friends, and even ourselves to recreate some of those delicious experiences we’ve been missing. Mostly it’s a way to keep these incredible businesses on the minds of everyone in our vast community. To reserve a copy of the recipe book, get in touch and we’ll make sure you get one.

5. Planning for the return.

While we help our vendors and clients adapt to this current reality, we’re also preparing to adapt to our future reality once the pandemic is over. Not quite a return to normal, our global return to the office will represent a new kind of normal, and we’re planning to be ready for it. Our plans include cleaning and disinfecting offices, educating our partners on proper protocols and social distancing measures for food-service, and of course, reserving orders for those first exciting days when everyone is back together. 

These are the initiatives we’re leading right now to support local businesses, but we’re continuing to explore other ways to empower our partners. As we develop more solutions for spreading that local business love, we’ll also be spreading the word about it right here, so stay tuned!