MESSAGE FROM CEO NEIL WILLIAMSON
Shortly after the outbreak of the COVID-19 in China, we were in close contact with Jardine Matheson, our holding company in Hong Kong, to ensure we were prepared for any impact we may experience in the UK.
Our thoughts are with all those that have been affected by COVID 19 and our priority is to safeguard the health and wellbeing of our colleagues, customers, suppliers and communities. We are doing all we can to take proactive and precautionary measures to help prevent the spread of the virus.
We have put into place a number of practical policies and safeguarding measures.
To help protect customers and colleagues, our actions have included:
• Asking all colleagues, customers and guests to our sites to wash their hands when they arrive as well as increasing the frequency of dealership cleaning and putting in place additional car cleaning measures.
• Restricting all non-essential travel and face-to-face meetings and event attendance, internally and with external suppliers.
• Tracking colleague holiday and following government guidelines on self-isolation if they have visited or been through a high-risk area
• Additional sickness and absence policies for colleagues or their family members presenting any symptoms and self-isolating
• A comprehensive internal communications programme to keep colleagues informed on latest development, reinforce the best practice hygiene and infection control and update on our business and HR policies as they evolve
• We already have a long-established colleague wellbeing and health support programme, which includes access to a Digital GP service, mental health first aiders, and an Employee Assistance Programme for anyone in need of confidential support. Through our partner Neyber, colleagues have access to a financial wellbeing portal for support around financial management.
To help ensure we can continue to fulfil customers’ needs, our actions have included:
• Last year we rolled out Office 365 across our Group, so we already have established collaboration and communication tools that enable colleagues to work remotely and reflective of social distancing recommendations
• We have existing remote working capabilities for colleagues and have tested the durability of our VPN infrastructure. Most recently we rolled out additional security software to reinforce even further our cyber security measures
• Reviewing all sites specific continuity plans to plan for any temporary operational changes if needed so that we can continue to fulfil any essential repair and servicing enquiries and bookings
We remain committed to ensuring that we continue to provide our customers with exceptional service and working closely with all our partners throughout this period as our plans evolve in response to the changing situation.