Businesses are urged to look at resilience planning to help them adapt and respond to COVID-related challenges.
Business NSW regional manager Kellon Beard said businesses needed to plan for, and consider, who their critical staff were, what plans they could put in place if those staff weren't available and how to minimise the COVID-related business impacts.
Staff shortages and disruptions in supply chains are among the challenges facing businesses amid the spread of the Omicron variant.
Mr Beard said businesses were doing it tough because the shortages were impacting everyone.
"We need more assistance for businesses," he said.
"Supply issues are certainly affecting a lot of people along with staff shortages with the number of COVID cases and contacts."
A Business NSW survey has shown business confidence in the state has plummeted in the wake of the Omicron surge.
The survey, conducted in the second week of January, had more than 2000 respondents from a variety of industries across metropolitan and regional NSW.
Business NSW chief executive Daniel Hunter said not surprisingly, business confidence and perceptions were not good right now with business owners not expecting much improvement over the next quarter.
"Short-term targeted support for those businesses and staff that are highly impacted is a must," Mr Hunter said.
"What's important is that confidence returns with speed - business needs the government to ensure messaging is geared towards how consumers can spend freely in safety and that immediate supply chain issues are being resolved.
"We need to promote individual accountability on how we act. If we are exposed to COVID or symptomatic, we test ourselves and stay home until in the clear.
"Otherwise, we should go out safely and support our local businesses where we can."
Mr Hunter said 40 per cent of businesses reported they didn't have enough cashflow for the next three months.
"As a result, crucial decisions around staffing and capital expenditure have been put on the backburner, at a time when business owners normally make those important decisions," he said.
Mr Hunter said confidence can return quickly but for many businesses the next three months will determine their capacity to survive and thrive alongside COVID in the longer-term.
Meanwhile, data from Roy Morgan released in late 2021 shows more than 8.1 million Australians in paid employment have more than 185 million days of annual leave due - up from 149.5 million days a year ago.
Mr Beard said that accrued annual leave was a burden on businesses.
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