Trigion have followed with great interest the announcement by the Prime Minister about the easing of the lockdown. A three step plan has been shared with the nation in which each step is dependent on the ongoing development of factor R. As long as the R remains below 1, the virus can be suppressed and the easing of lockdown can take place. It is fair to say that the steps are a modest relaxation of the current measures.
One of the main messages is that the government actively encourages the nation to get back to work if their work activities can’t be done from home. Our business of professional cleaning and security services definitively cannot be done from home. Many of our Facilicom UK & Ireland’s colleagues at the frontline have been performing their work with great attitude and spirit during the Corona crisis for many of our clients who operate essential businesses. The focus on hygiene in particular has led to a different appreciation of cleaning and I have received a large number of messages in which the work of our colleagues is praised. That is great to hear and a real acknowledgement of the great work done by them.
These are difficult times for all of us and Facilicom UK & Ireland have not escaped painful reminders of the viciousness of the virus. We sadly lost three colleagues to the Coronavirus over the last few weeks. Of course, our heart goes out to their loved ones and the colleagues that have been impacted by these tragedies. We are trying to support their families to the best of our abilities.
At the same time, we have over a third of all our colleagues on furlough. That is a massive amount. In addition, we have many people who have to work from home and after almost two months, it turns out that working from home can be really hard for some of us. Our managers and the HR team are putting in a great deal of effort to support everyone that is affected in one way or another by staying in close dialogue. If any of the above has impacted you, can I please refer you once again to our Employee Assistance Programme. It is free and confidential so please use it, if you feel it can benefit you in any way.
On a positive note, we have been able to remain paying the vast majority of our furloughed staff at 100%. We know that will take away some of the worries during these difficult times. Of course, this is very much a joined up effort from clients, management and all other stakeholders.
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
Further announcement on the CJRS have been made in recent weeks. The scheme has been extended till October, but some changes will come into place from August. We will have to wait till the end of this month to get further clarity from the government what those changes might be.
More than a third of all our colleagues are now furloughed which is very large number. The application for the CJRS has been made and more will follow for future periods. The fact that we are talking about hundreds of staff members of which many have varying levels of income made this a considerable and complex exercise for the departments involved. We are pleased to say that the vast majority of our staff are still being paid 100%.
In the guidelines the government talks about a slowly phased return to work where required, there is a strong place on how the workplace of the ‘new normal’ could be organised. A strong emphasis on social distancing and hygiene go hand in hand in most of those guidelines. Of course each client’s premises and situation will be different. However, looking at averages, we will see that office capacity will be strongly reduced to 30/40% of normal capacity in most cases. At the same time, a much higher level of hygiene is needed. This has also a strong impact on entry management in which our security services play an important role. The role that the services provided by Facilicom UK & Ireland is more prominent than ever, and the scope and specification needs to tailored to evolve to work in the new reality. We are in constant dialogue with our clients in supporting them with the best way forward for their return to work, from entry management, thermal cameras, deep cleaning/fogging in advance of their return of their employees into their buildings , as well as ‘Welcome Back to Work packages’. Please see full details in our brochure.
We would like to take this opportunity of re-assuring you that our primary objective is to endeavour to continue to deliver the best possible service during these unchartered times. We are committed to supporting you and your colleagues to enable your own business continuity during circumstances which are exceptional and unprecedented for all of us.