• Andy Nash

Updated: Mar 25


Dear all

Many thanks for the responses we’ve had over the past few days to our email – we are glad you have found it useful.

I wanted to send an update following the change in government advice.

Office closure

Following the announcement last night encouraging businesses to start working from home we have commenced the relevant processes to enable this to happen with our office in Cardiff now closing for the foreseeable future. As mentioned previously the impact on our services should be minimal, although due to the speed at which the change in advice has happened we are expecting an initial 24-48hr period of adjustment which may impact work planned for the next couple of days. If this is likely to impact you we have already contacted you early this morning to let you know. Once this period is over we should be back to business as usual albeit from a distance.

We will be prioritising all March payrolls this week, and will be sending out the reports for authorisation and payment by the end of this week, assuming we receive the data from individual clients in time – Susie will be in contact with most payroll clients either today or Thursday if you have not heard form her already.

On a practical level the physical building is still open and will be remaining open, as per their agreed contingency plans. This means any post will be safely stored and we will be informed so that I can come and collect it on a bi-weekly basis. If you are sending files or other documents to us and have concerns please do contact us beforehand as we do have alternative arrangements in place if necessary, but we have worked with the staff in this building for over 2 years now and have total confidence in their systems.

Visits

We have also now amended our policy on visiting clients and for the foreseeable future we are cancelling all visits to clients and will be conducting all work remotely. We will be in contact with clients on a weekly basis who have planned independent examinations, board meetings, etc as to how we will manage individual planned events. We can still facilitate meetings via our conferencing software GoToMeeeting which enables us to share our screen with you and vice versa so all meetings should still be able to happen in some format.

Staffing

Currently none of our staff or families have been impacted directly, but all our staff, as you are probably aware, have young children and its increasingly likely that over the next few weeks schools may close, and the government is planning for that eventuality. As a business we have already taken steps to ensure we can continue to provide a normal service should this happen, however we would ask clients to be sensitive to the needs of our staff - we have implemented flexible working arrangements to facilitate any consequences of a change in government policy.

We really do understand how unnerving this time is for clients and our two priorities are safety of our staff and clients, and continuity of service for our clients – if you do have any concerns about the above please do contact me directly.

We would also appreciate being kept informed of any changes in the way you are working and also anything we can do to help during this time.

With best wishes to you, your staff and families during this time

  • Andy Nash

Dear all

With the ongoing increase in cases of Corvid-19/Coronavirus within the UK we are entering what is likely to be a challenging and unsettling time for the sector.

As a firm we want to stand with you and support you during this time, and as such wanted to provide you with an update on how we will be tackling the challenges as a firm as well as provide some practical advice.

Impact on our services

Currently our offices in Cardiff are open and we intend to keep them open unless government advice changes. This means you can contact us on our landline (02920 351475) and we will be working our normal hours. Even if we were forced to work from home following a change in government advice we have just completed a full upgrade of our IT systems which means all staff can do this and access all our files securely using our business machines. This will esnure full continuity of our services whilst not compromising the handling of your data. All our staff also now have work mobiles so can contact you/you can talk to them should this happen – numbers are available on request.

The only change to our services is that we will be minimising the amount of time our staff spend travelling, in particular in London, and so will only be attending meetings and site visits in London if essential. This is to protect both yourselves and our staff. If you have concerns about this please contact me directly.

However, the bottom line is we are confident we will be able to continue operating at full capacity at the current time, and also that, even if we have to change practicalities about the way we work, these changes should have little or no impact on the end product.

Impact on your funding

The biggest concern for most of our clients is the impact this may have on funding. Unfortunately we don’t have all the answers on what this impact will be, or how long funding will be impacted for, but here are a few hopefully helpful pointers from us.

From an events perspective, we would recommend all clients continue to follow government advice – if you do end up cancelling or postponing an event do speak to your insurance providers before you make a decision to see if you are covered for an insurance claim.

From a grant funding perspective the general narrative we are hearing is that grant funders are aware this is a unique event and they are taking that into account. They recognise that there will be an impact on your programme delivery and outputs, and that staff may end up being off sick. They recognise that there may be a need to divert funding to cover sickness, purchase equipment to facilitate home-working or change the way you deliver your programmes. They also recognise that you may struggle to deliver reports within agreed timeframes. Our recommendation is speak to your funders about your concerns – they want you to succeed!

A consortium of funders including BBC Children in Need, Comic Relief, Esmee Fairbairn Foundation and City Bridge Trust amongst many others, have issued a joint statement through the London Funders website here.

Impact on your staff

Other than the obvious uncertainty facing staff, and their concerns, there is a possibility your staff may end up having to self-isolate or even contract the virus.

The government have extended the Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) regime so it now kicks in on day 1, as opposed to day 4, to ensure that staff who do end up self-isolating have some financial support.

A lot of clients have raised concerns about this as historically SSP has not been reclaimable in the same way that statutory maternity pay is. In the budget on Wednesday the government announced that as a temporary measure all employers with fewer than 250 employees will be able to reclaim SSP paid for coronavirus-related absences only. This will cover up to two weeks of absence per eligible employee. Its not been announced how this will work yet, but we will support all our payroll clients with this process if necessary.

As always, we are here to help and support, so please do feel free to call us with any questions.

Wishing you, your teams and your families the very best during this uncertain time.

Registered company in England & Wales - 09967708

© 2019-2020 by Andy Nash

Accounting & Consultancy Ltd

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