Posted 24th September
For most businesses, Health & Safety is hugely important, but lies on the edges of what we do all day every day. We educate ourselves on the rules and stick to them because we want everything to run smoothly and for everyone to remain safe and well.
Like most companies, we’ve always been aware of hazards such as manual handling, warehouse layout and office safety. But also like most companies we’ve not faced a threat like Covid that doesn’t care what room you’re in or what equipment you’re using! We’ve quite happily shared our ofiices, moved freely around our buildings, and used communal spaces. We’re a diverse group in terms of age, and although we’re lucky that being a family business means we consist of a smaller than average number of households, we still have to consider, like everyone else, the hugely complicated web of extended families and connected households we are linked to. It’s a daunting thing to work out, and that’s before even considering trying to make a responsible plan of action.
We’ve come to the same conclusion as most businesses and that is to keep contact to minimum. It’s not that we don’t love seeing our lovely customers face to face, but we all have loved ones we don’t want to put at risk. So, we have the following procedures in place, which we thought we’d share with you so that you have as much information as possible to decide how you buy from or contact us.
We’ve opened the door of our cash and carry showrooms and it is possible to visit us and buy as usual. Some restrictions do apply – not all of the rooms are open to browse. However staff can bring you samples of anything from around the building for you to see, touch and test. All our staff will be wearing masks or face shields and washing hands and cleaning surfaces throughout the day. This includes card payment machines. We’re happy to accept cash payment, but card payment is preferred. Opening hours are very slightly reduced to 10am to 4pm Monday to Friday. We have new signage to indicate closed areas and where to wait if we have other customers in the building too. As of tomorrow, we will be displaying a QR code to scan for the NHS Test & Trace app.
We realise these measures aren’t as convenient as visiting us was pre-lockdown, but we do hope they’ll make sense to our customers.
During March and after our reopening in the summer, we ran a system of telephone ordering and payment, allowing us to leave goods outside to be picked up. If you feel most comfortable continuing with this system we are very happy to do so. Just give us a call on 01603 722264 to place your order and pay by card if necessary, and we’ll leave your goods in a safe dry place to collect contactlessly, with your receipt attached.
Orders placed online are currently running almost entirely as usual. Should further lockdowns/restrictions occur we may extend our delivery times very slightly – we currently expect goods to arrive within 48 hours, and may have to extend this to 3-5 working days. Our couriers, DHL and Sprint Xpress, have their own measures in place that are in line with ours and all government guidelines.
Our van drivers are following the same rules as our staff on site – social distancing, protective workwear, hand sanitiser, contactless drops wherever possible. If you have particular rules at your workplace or delivery destination we are happy to adhere to them, so please let us know by email to email@example.com.
Obviously customer-facing staff are not the only members adhering to new guidelines. We’ve rearranged offices to ensure social distancing, allocated bathroom and kitchen facilities to stay out of each others ways, and have regular antibac cleaning of everything from phones to kettles. We wear masks or shields when interacting with each other.
We’ve heard a lot of the phrase “new normal” in the last six months, and we hope that ours will be suitable and safe for our customers and staff. If you have any questions at all please do give us a call.