As you read this post, the chances are you’ll be doing so from home. As we notch up a series of ‘Covid’ anniversaries, Tuesday March 16th created another - one year since the Prime Minister told us that people should work from home where possible as part of a range of stringent new measures. Twelve months on, how have you fared?
Working from home – a ‘Marmite’ kind of situation
It’s probably fair to say the nation has been divided in their thoughts about working from home – either ‘loving it’ or ‘hating it’, with some drifting between the two!
Casting our minds back to March 2020 there was definitely a novelty factor attached to home working. Social media was full of video clips with unexpected appearances of young children and pets taking the starring role in work Zoom calls for instance. This added a lighter mood in the darkness of Covid, and perhaps in retrospect, keeping things ‘real’ in what was, and remains, a ‘life and death’ situation.
Many of us juggled laptops on the kitchen counter at the start but have now progressed, to dedicated work space in the home or in some cases, actual construction of a home office. According to recent research carried out by Lloyds Bank, two in five workers say that when looking for a new home, suitable work space is now a factor. Who knew this would turn out to be such a prevalent requirement?
Home working from Week 1
We, like many in our industry, acted swiftly last March. Technological investments enabled 99% of our people to decamp from the office quickly to work entirely from home with little or no limitations. From the Customer Contact Centre to Underwriting to the process where new credit accounts were opened, we continued to service and support our partners and customers. It’s been our ongoing aim throughout the pandemic.
For our colleagues, following the initial shift to safe home working, we focussed on monitoring well-being and productivity, from providing access to resources and tools to manage the isolation to creating a flexible working day, particularly for employees with children or home-schooling responsibilities. We found some thrived in a home working environment, others found it more challenging – we’ve tried to introduce workable options for all.
Times are changing with businesses throughout the UK planning their next operational moves as the vaccine rolls out and infection rates begin to drop. For the moment we continue to work in the same ‘working from home’ manner but in coming weeks, following close consultation relating to safe working and the latest government guidelines, we too will make decisions regarding how we return to the office and what this may look like. Depending on how quickly the situation improves, we will activate one of a number of contingency plans we have in place so our ongoing partnerships can continue uninterrupted and thrive.
Business as usual
As from the first days of lockdown, we are here to help you grow your businesses by facilitating the most effective use of award winning, premium finance solutions. Whether we are in the office, working from home or working out in the regions, our constant, ongoing aim is to support you in the best way possible.
We look forward to advising you further about our operational plans as they move forward and are finalised. Watch this space – we’re excited for the future!