Business groups join forces to support companies planning to reopen after lockdown

Organisations representing businesses across Norfolk and Suffolk are working together to help companies get ready to reopen as lockdown restrictions begin to ease.

Support to source PPE, advice for employers and employees and positive messages about our town centres are among challenges and solutions being shared by New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership, the Federation of Small Businesses, Norfolk Chambers of Commerce, Suffolk Chamber of Commerce, Norwich BID, Ipswich Central, Discover King’s Lynn and the Great Yarmouth Town Centre Partnership.

The group has been gathering advice from firms which were open throughout lockdown to produce case studies to help those now making plans to reopen. The tips include staggered break times, restrictions on numbers of people using canteens and kitchens, as well as looking at ways to allow for contact-free handling of paperwork for deliveries and orders.

The group is also working together to look at demand for PPE, using a database of local and national suppliers which has been created by New Anglia LEP.

Nova Fairbank, Head of Policy for Norfolk Chambers said “Many businesses will be considering what they need to put in place to adhere to the government guidance.  Having access to examples of what has worked well for other businesses is really helpful.  We would also caution businesses to consider timescales - some products may take several days/weeks to deliver.  Having easy access to information about PPE suppliers will help them get organised.”

Hayley Mace, New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership’s Head of Communications and Engagement, said: “We know that many businesses are concerned about reopening. Whether they’re worried about getting the signage they’ll need or trying to work out how to ensure social distancing for staff and customers, it is a really challenging time and it’s important that business groups work together to try and come up with practical, helpful advice and consistent messages.”

You can read the case studies from some local Chamber member businesses online here.

To find out more visit New Anglia LEP’s PPE database.

For the latest Government guidance on working safely.

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