Survive Revive Thrive – Getting Eastbourne working again
Today’s Government Updates
Please find today’s key government updates below.
Test & Trace Guidance – records for staff customers and visitors
Easing of lockdown measures is being supported by the Test and Trace programme. In certain sectors you should assist this service by keeping a temporary record of customers and visitors for 21 days, in a way that is manageable for your organisation, and assists NHS Test and Trace with requests for that data if needed. This will help contain clusters or outbreaks.
Sectors that this guidance applies to:
- Hospitality, including pubs, bars, restaurants and cafés;
- Tourism and leisure, including hotels, museums, cinemas, zoos and theme parks;
- Close contact services, including hairdressers, barbershops and tailors;
- Facilities provided by local authorities, including town halls and civic centres for events, community centres, libraries and children’s centres; and
- Places of worship, including use for events and other community activities.
Full guidance can be found here: https://bit.ly/CV19BusinessTT.
Restaurants, pubs, bars, and takeaway servicesreopening safely
From Saturday 4th July, most of the pubs and restaurants we love will be reopening. The following tweet explains how pubs and restaurants will keep customers and staff safe – please share it with all your business contacts:
Hospitality safe working guidance can be found here: https://bit.ly/HospitalityGuidance.
Self-isolation lifted for travellers from certain countries…
Passengers returning or visiting from countries with a reduced risk of Covid-19, including Germany, France, Spain and Italy, will no longer need to self-isolate on arrival from 10 July 2020. All passengers, except those on a small list of exemptions, will still be required to provide contact information on arrival in the UK.
The full news story can be found here – https://bit.ly/SelfIsolationChanges – and further guidance will follow.
Employee return to work tool
The government has developed a tool to help employees to assess if they can return to work. The tool guides employees through questions that may influence their ability to go back to work safely. Employers can share this tool with employees to aid discussion on how employees can return to work safely. Please find out more here: https://bit.ly/EmployeeTool.
If you are thinking of making staff redundant, we can help. If they need help with CVs and interview skills – call us. They may be considering starting their own business? We can help them to do this safely.
We can help them deliver their new business idea and protect their investment.
Check out the up-to-date consumer confidence tracker below when planning your reopening.
It is clear from the data that we have some work to do to communicate Eastbourne as a great place to visit. Most respondants said they would visit the South West when travelling for a holiday or short break so we need to get them to consider Eastbourne by communicating it is safe, beautiful and convenient.
Most people will use their own car to travel, so a 1.5 hour journey is better than a 5 hour trip, especially with children on board!
Easing of lockdown restrictions in England – reopening of further businesses
From Saturday 4 July 2020, all businesses and venues in England can reopen, except for a small number of ‘Close proximity’ venues such as nightclubs, soft-play areas, indoor gyms, swimming pools, water parks, bowling alleys and spas, which will need to remain closed for now. The UK Government is continuing to work with these sectors to establish taskforces to help them to become COVID Secure and reopen as soon as possible.
Pubs, restaurants and hairdressers and accommodation sites will be able to reopen, providing they adhere to COVID Secure guidelines. Some leisure facilities and tourist attractions may also reopen, if they can do so safely – this includes outdoor gyms and playgrounds, cinemas, museums, galleries, theme parks and arcades.
COVID Secure guides cover a range of different types of work:
- Find the new hotel and guest accommodation guidance here.
- Find the new close contact services (hairdressing, barber shops, beauty, nail bars, make up, tattooing, spray tanning, spas, sports and massage therapy, dress fitters, tailors, fashion designers) guidance here.
- Find the new visitor economy (hotels, guest accommodation, indoor and outdoor attractions, business events and consumer shows) guidance here.
- Find the updated restaurants, pubs, bars and takeaway services guidance here.
Warning – Hand Sanitiser Fire Hazard
There have been a number of incidences of hand sanitisers catching fire when left inside cars during the warm weather. When it is 25°C outside it is 55°C inside an unattended car. When the alchohol content of the sanitiser ignites the car can be damaged or destroyed.
Please don’t leave hand sanitiser inside an unattended car.
Self-Employment Grant and Furlough Details
Please find details below of the second grant for self-employed workers, and details of the furlough scheme extension up to the end of October with a contribution expected from employers.
Extended Furlough Scheme
The furloughed employee will continue to receive 80% of their pay – up to £2,500 a month – until the end of October. This will include a gradually increasing contribution from the employer.
The scheme introduces flexibility and the employee will be allowed to return to work part-time from July without losing out financially, rather than from August as initially suggested.
We asked for greater flexibility to get staff back to work – and we got it! For example, if a member of staff comes back part time for 2 days, the business will pay their salary for 2 days and the furlough scheme will pay 80% for the other two days, reducing gradually up to October:
- June and July – the furlough contribution for the time not worked will remain at 80%.
- August – the employer will pay the employers NI and pension contribution.
- September – the employer will pay 10% of the furlough costs. The govt will pay 70% up to £2,190.
- October – the employer will pay 20% of the furlough cost. The govt will pay 60% up to £1,875.
- November – the scheme will stop completely.
The Self-Employed Income Support Scheme was due to end in May but has been extended as we requested.
Self-employed people will be able to claim up to £6,570 in August as a second, and final, grant. This is available to those who have lost income during the lockdown and will be based on 3 months average income at 70%. So, in August, each self-employed worker can apply for a grant of 70% of their average monthly trading profits, up to a cap of £6,570.
Including the initial grant in May, the maximum amount self-employed workers can claim is £14,070. This does not affect the self-employed persons ability to claim the Discretionary Small Business Grant from their council. The grants portals are already open on Eastbourne Borough and Lewes District Councils’ websites.
Safe working preparation for your business
It is vital that we return to work safely without setting off a second wave of infection and there little time to go before retailers and other businesses start reopening, so all members should follow these guidelines to make sure you are ready.
Please look at the Quick Reference bullet point guidance below to decide what you need for your business. You must also complete a risk assessment to protect your team and introduce social distancing as detailed below. To help you we have included a blank risk assessment template.
You should also print off the Safer Working Charter and display it in your business. Check here for the charter.
Three of our members have created safe distancing packs for your business:
Take photographs of everything you introduce and keep copies of all relevant documents. Send these to your insurer to make sure you are covered in the event that a member of staff or member of the public makes a claim against you.
You may also want to ask your team to sign a commitment to protect colleagues and customers from infection while Covid-19 is around.
Quick reference to Government safety guidance for all workplaces
- Staggering arrival/departure times to reduce crowding in and out
- Providing additional parking or bike racks
- Reducing congestion, for example by having more entry points to the workplace.
- One for entering the building and one for exiting if possible
- Hand washing or hand sanitation at entry and exit points
- Alternatives to touch-based security devices such as keypads
- Storage for staff clothes and bags
- Staff to change into work uniforms on site using appropriate facilities/changing areas
- Washing uniforms on site rather than at home
- Discouraging nonessential trips within buildings and sites
- Reducing job and location rotation, for example, assigning employees to specific floors
- Introducing more one-way flow routes through buildings
- Reducing maximum occupancy for lifts, providing hand sanitiser for the operation of lifts, and encouraging use of stairs
- Regulating use of corridors, lifts, and staircases
- Reviewing layouts to allow staff to work further apart from each other
- Using floor tape or paint to mark areas to help staff maintain 2 metres
- Avoiding employees working face to face — working side by side or facing away from each other where possible
- Using screens to create a physical barrier between people where appropriate
- Staggering break times to reduce pressure on the break rooms, using outside areas for breaks
- Using protective screening for staff in receptions or similar areas
- Reconfiguring seating and tables to maintain spacing and reduce face-to-face interactions
- Providing packaged meals or similar to avoid opening staff canteens
Hotels and restaurants
- Bar areas must be closed
- Seated restaurants and cafés must be closed
- All food and drink outlets to serve takeaways only
- Allowing access to as few people as possible into kitchens
- Minimising interaction between kitchen workers and other workers
- Putting teams into shifts to restrict the number of employees interacting
- Spacing workstations 2 metres apart as much as possible
- Minimising access to walk-in pantries, fridges, and freezers, with likely only one person being able to access these areas at one point in time
- Minimising contact at “handover” points with other staff, such as when presenting food to serving staff and delivery drivers
- Hand sanitiser for visitors
- Avoid crowded reception areas, staggering check-in and check-out times
- Carrying out contractor services at night
- Considering room occupancy levels to maintain social distancing, especially in dormitories
- Minimising contact between kitchen and food preparation workers and delivery drivers
- Using front of house staff to serve customers in walk-in takeaways, with tills 2 metres away from the kitchen and ideally separated by a wall or partition
- Creating a physical barrier between front of house workers and customers
- Using contactless card payments
- Limiting access to premises for people waiting for takeaways. Asking customers to wait in their cars
- Asking customers to order online, on apps or over the telephone
Workers in other people’s homes
- Discussing with households ahead of a visit to ask that a 2-metre distance is kept
- Asking that households leave all internal doors open
- Identifying busy areas across the household where people travel to, from or through, for example, stairs and corridors
- Limiting the time spent in close proximity to no more than 15 minutes
- Bringing your own food and drink to households
- Limiting the number of workers within a confined space
- Using a consistent pairing system if people have to work in close proximity
- Allocating the same workers to a household where jobs are repetitive
- Where multiple workers are in a home, creating fixed teams of workers who carry out their duties in those teams
- Identifying areas where people need to hand things to each other and find ways to remove direct contact
- Allocating the same worker to the same household each time there is a visit, e.g. cleaners
- Using electronic payment methods and electronically signed and exchanged documents.
Factories and warehouses
- Ask for who it is essential to be on site — office staff should stay home
- Planning for the minimum number of people needed on site
- Providing equipment for employees to work from home safely and effectively — for example, laptops
- Servicing and adjusting ventilation systems
- Frequent cleaning of work areas and equipment
- Frequent cleaning and disinfecting of objects and surfaces
- Clearing workspaces and removing waste at the end of a shift
- Cleaning procedures for equipment, tools, and vehicles after each shift and after each use of shared equipment — for example, pallet trucks and forklift trucks
- Hand sanitiser for employees to use boarding vehicles or handling deliveries
- Regular cleaning of reusable delivery boxes
Shops and branches
- Defining the number of customers that can follow 2-metre social distancing within the store
- Taking into account total floor space as well as likely pinch points and busy areas
- Limiting the number of customers at any one time
- Suspending or reducing some customer services
- Encouraging customers to shop alone
- Informing customers who are accompanied by children that they are responsible for supervising them at all times
- Using outside premises for queuing
- Communicating with nearby premises to manage shared queueing areas
- Shopping centres should take responsibility for regulating the number of customers in the centre
- Continuing to keep customer restaurants and/or cafés closed until further notice, unless offering hot or cold food to be consumed off the premises
- Providing clear guidance to people on arrival
- Creating social distancing “champions” to demonstrate social distancing guidelines to customers
- Staggered collection times for customers collecting items
- Setting up no-contact return procedures
- Cashless refunds
- Keeping returns separate from displayed merchandise
- Office staff should work from home if at all possible.
- Employees in roles critical for business can go in
- Employees who cannot work from home due to home circumstances can go in
- Planning for the minimum number of people needed on site
- Monitoring the wellbeing of employees who are working from home
- Keeping in touch with off-site employees including welfare, mental and physical health and personal security
- Review layouts, line setups, or processes to let employees work further apart
- Arranging for employees to work side-by-side or facing away from each other
- Screens to create a physical barrier between people
- Floor tape or paint to mark areas to help employees keep to a 2-metre distance
- Avoiding use of hot desks and spaces
- Limiting use of high-touch items and shared office equipment
- Using remote working tools, to avoid in-person meetings
- Avoiding transmission during meetings, avoiding sharing pens
- Only necessary participants should attend meetings
- Hand sanitiser in meeting rooms
- Holding meetings in well-ventilated rooms
- Limiting or restricting occupancy in group interaction spaces
- For areas where regular meetings take place, using floor signage to help people maintain social distancing
- Only workers deemed necessary to carry out physical work or supervision should physically attend
- Changing layouts to let workers work further apart
- Using screens to separate people from each other
- Using a consistent pairing system if people have to work in close proximity
- Avoiding employees working face to face — for example, by working side by side or facing away from each other
Working in a vehicle
- Reducing the number of employees at base depots or distribution centres at a given time
- Scheduling times for the collection of goods
- Loading onto vehicles without interacting with driver
- Reducing job/location rotation
- Finding alternative solutions to two-person delivery
- Minimising the contact during payments and exchange of documentation
- Single person/contactless refuelling where possible
- Physical screening if safe
- Using a fixed pairing system if people have to work in close proximity
- Making sure vehicles are well ventilated
- Ensure regular cleaning of vehicles
- Using no-contact deliveries wherever possible
- Scheduling to limit exposure to large crowds and rush hours
- Revising pick-up and drop-off collection points
- No-contact deliveries where the nature of the product allows
- Maximising use of electronic paperwork
Thinking about restructuring?
It is a sad fact that some businesses may be considering making staff redundant in order to survive. It is also possible that after weeks of lockdown your business might not be able to afford to make the redundancy payments necessary. If this is the case, insolvency practitioners may be able help you access government funding to make redundancy payments.
Follow this link for more information about the insolvency services’ Redundancy Payment Service: Quantuma – Need to make redundancies
If your business is struggling, Quantuma can help you to turn things around. Don’t wait until it’s too late.
Coming out of lockdown, it is important that companies have the breathing space to manage, or restructure, the debts they took on to keep them going during the crisis. This applies especially to businesses that were strong before the pandemic; they need to be able to deal with the accumulated debt and come out ready to make the most of the post lockdown world. For some, the mountain will be too high to climb and they might need a more drastic solution. Either way, it is essential to act reasonably and carefully: document your decisions, don’t take illegal dividends and above all – seek advice!
Herron Fisher can help with action plans, restructuring or formal insolvency advice. It costs nothing to talk. Contact them on 01323 723643 or via their website at www.herronfisher.co.uk
The Chamber plan to “Survive – Revive – Thrive” and win £1,000
Our plan is focused on these areas:
1. Leading Out of Lockdown
We have acquired funding for a programme to develop your leadership and management skills to help you lead your business, successfully, out of lockdown. We will give you a series of valuable workshops and 1-2-1 coaching with specialists either on line or face to face, when allowed. These will help you to develop and deliver a strong Action Plan for the future of your business.
The best Action Plan will go on to win a £1000 grant to help develop the business.
This programme uses the best consultants and specialists to help you and your business to revive and thrive. As this is completely funded by government state aid and the EU, you must declare this whenever you are applying for state aid. The value of this programme is almost £2,500 per person, which you should state when making a De Minimis declaration.
For a place on this leadership and management programme call Rebecca on 01323 641144 or email her here.
(This programme is available to any business in the Lewes District including Chailey, Ringmer, Peacehaven, Newhaven, Seaford, and Lewes.)
2. Opening Up Eastbourne
We have contacted the Borough and County Councils to ask for more space for business to be done in the open air. This will include:
- Wider pavements to give pedestrians space to maintain 2 metres social distance
- Pedestrianised streets to allow restaurants, cafes and pubs to serve tables in the open air
- Pedestrian areas to allow shops to trade in the street as well as inside
- Access to green spaces like the Western Lawns and parks for hotels residents to picnic and eat Al Fresco
3. Eat Local, Shop Local, Book Local
- We will work with TechResort, the BID and the EHA to develop a not-for-profit food delivery app, like Deliveroo or JustEat, so that local restaurants and takeaways can deliver food without losing 30% of their turnover to the booking site.
- We will work on a local Amazon style App to allow you to buy local on line, and get it delivered as well.
- We will also be sharing the EHA and VisitEastbourne not-for-profit hotel booking site to help UK residents discover our endless blue skies and pristine beaches. At the moment, if you book a hotel or guesthouse via Booking.Com, Trivago or Expedia, almost 20% of the cost is hived off to the booking agency in Holland or America. The VisitEastbourne site will allow the hotel to retain much more of the fee and your investment stays in the local economy.
4. Netwalking to Success
We will be introducing ‘netwalking’ to get businesses together in a safe, socially distanced environment. You will be able to walk with like minded business people, share best practice, share your concerns, reboot your B2B customer relationships and exercise at the same time.