The challenges presented by COVID-19 have been extraordinary for everyone. As individuals, as families, as businesses and as a communities, we have had to find the resources and the resilience to reorientate and keep going.
Since March 2021, we at SDBF have continued to support our clients and progress their building, surveying and capital funding projects, aiming to maintain a safety first, common sense approach to business as usual. This has meant making some changes to the ways in which we work, to protect both our clients and ourselves.
So how do you run a business that involves lots of meetings, site visits and team working?
The team at SDBF started out by working remotely from their homes, quickly adapting to working from attics, kitchen tables and sitting rooms. Anyone who has had to adapt to working from home, will know the trials and tribulations of dodgy WIFI connections, interruptions from pets, children and partners during Zoom and Teams meetings, and no physical access to a photocopier, papers, files, drawings and stationery.
The important business of keeping in touch with clients, meant having the SDBF telephone lines redirected to our mobiles. Mobile phones and features like WhatsApp, also came into their own, as we set up a WhatsApp group, to keep in touch with each other and ensure that we were all fully informed on projects and their progress. Perhaps one of the best investments in technology, was new laptops for the team, so that Zoom and Teams meetings with clients and other team members would not be hampered by old technology.
Nearly all our projects continued apace (access to materials being the only barrier at times), and where it was necessary, we continued to meet on site with our brilliant contractors, all the time keeping safe with face masks and hand hygiene. Site visits are so important to ensure that our clients’ queries are answered and consultation with contractors can take place. Carrying this out safely, was vital.
It is now July 2021. We have adapted to new ways of working and will continue to adapt to new circumstances and follow all the government guidelines. Site visits continue and we are slowly returning to our offices, but are currently using a rota to ensure that there is no overcrowding – our offices are quite narrow!
One thing is for certain – that we are confident that we can continue to adapt to new ways of working. Technology has certainly helped in this regard, but the resilience of the team has played no small part in keeping the business going.
We are so grateful to our clients, contractors and suppliers, for their patience and support.