Supporting our clients then, now and in the future
COVID-19 has presented many businesses with unprecedented challenges. Here at Ad Valorem, we recognised very early on in the pandemic that we had two main priorities; supporting our clients during this time of uncertainty and economic change, and also ensuring the wellbeing of our team.
Due to our investment over the last couple of years in cloud technology, the transition from office to home working was swift. Most members of staff were able to adapt to working from home within a matter of hours, with our entire team being fully operational only two days after we took the decision to close our office on Monday, 16th March.
Uncertainty is one of the biggest threats a business can face, and we understand that being a business owner can sometimes be an extremely lonely place. We therefore made it our first objective to contact all clients, whether business owners or self-employed individuals, to act as a sounding board for their concerns and to provide relevant advice for their particular situation.
In the early days and weeks of lockdown, information was released daily from the government regarding the support being launched for business owners. The daily press releases often provided little detail on this support which we thought could result in business owners finding it difficult to identify what support was applicable to them and how to apply for it. To provide clarity around the government initiatives, we provided detailed weekly guidance emails, along with our Ad Valorem COVID-19 Support Guide, which outlined the support available for different business types and sectors, highlighting eligibility criteria and how to apply for the schemes.
We fully appreciate the enormity of the impact COVID-19 has placed on businesses and understand that the Job Retention Scheme has particularly helped many of our clients through the lockdown period. As the lockdown has proven to be one of the most significant challenges for business in the 20 years we’ve been established, we are extremely proud and grateful that we didn’t furlough any of our employees and kept our team fully contactable for our clients. In fact, over the lockdown period we’ve welcomed seven new starters across all areas of our practice from payroll, to accounts and tax, to our specialist R&D team.
As well as focusing on our clients, we have also launched in-house initiatives to take care of our amazing team. Working from home often sees the working day extend into usual social time, resulting in a decrease in exercise. We therefore introduced the Ad Valorem ’Step Challenge’, where employees were targeted with walking a number of steps per week, with a prize available if maintained over the month. Prizes included local business vouchers to support the community economy when lockdown restrictions reduced accessibility and water bottles to encourage a healthy lifestyle. We also hosted family quizzes over Zoom, which kept our more remote team members in touch with each other.
As lockdown begins to ease and business slowly starts to return to normal, we would like to take this time to reflect and thank both our wonderful clients and amazing team for their continued support and hard work over the last six months. We will continue to support our clients in line with the new normal and are ready for any potential challenges the coming months may bring.
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