Given the increasing spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the recent government advice to work from home wherever we can, we wanted to reassure our customers that Volpa has taken steps to look after the welfare of our staff and ensure we remain “open for business”.
Volpa is very well prepared to cope with the various possible effects of the virus due to our investments in our digital infrastructure over recent years. Our integrated team of designers, marketing specialists and PR experts have been used to working from home regularly as part of our flexible approach to working. Last week, the full Volpa team deployed as a virtual organisation and we are ready to continue working for our clients as usual.
Our office is now closed for the foreseeable future. Deliveries are being handled by the reception team in the building and we have a planned rota for designated team members to check the mail weekly, scan the press cuttings and water the plants. This will continue as long as we are not ordered to lockdown by the Government.
Keeping in touch by Phone
Our systems and servers have been cloud based for over a decade and our phone system has been VOIP based for over 15 years. What this means is that when you use our direct lines you will reach the person you are looking for, on their mobile phone, sitting safely at their desk at home.
As a result of this infrastructure, we expect there to be little to no compromise to the quality and timeliness of the services we can deliver. The main reception phone is being manned but if you can use people’s direct dial, that would be great. Their numbers are listed below. Please bear in mind that some of our team members are part time and may not be able to answer the call when they are not working, if you don’t get an answer please call the main office number instead:
- General Office Number: 658187
- Stephen: 700142 – FT
- Tricia: 700130 – FT
- Gordon: 700131 – FT
- Kim: 700132 – FT
- Rachel: 700138 – FT
- Sean: 700144 – PT, Flexible Availability
- Jennifer: 700139 – (PT – Monday – Thursday)
- Linda: 700143 – (PT – Mornings, Every Day Except Wednesday)
- Shannon: 700140 – (PT – Monday – Wednesday)
- Emma: 700134 (PT – Tuesday – Friday)
- Gail: 700145 (PT – Tuesday – Thursday)
- Jenna: 700137 – (PT – Wednesday – Friday)
Sadly, it may be a while before we get a chance to see you again face to face. We apologise for this, but we hope that, in the current climate, you’ll understand. Volpa has a Zoom subscription to set up video conferencing calls with clients. We promise not to wear our pyjamas, but please bring your own cup of coffee and we’ll bring ours and let’s do our best.
Things we can do to help you right now
We appreciate this is not business as usual for anyone, and that these circumstances will challenge our clients in so many ways. The measures outlined by the Chancellor will, we hope, ensure the financial wheels keep turning. Like every business, we are worried about cash flow and cancelled contracts. The last thing any of us want to do is put jobs at risk. We are able to work, and we want to help our clients get through this, together. So, just to get the wheels turning about what we can do to help you, here’s some ideas:
- PR Stories: Our friends in the media are genuinely looking for stories, and not just stories that relate to COVID-19 (although they are looking for those too!). They have no sport to fill the sports section and their papers are being dominated by a single story. Many of them have digital papers for which they are desperately needing content. There are, as crazy as it might sound, opportunities to generate coverage for your business at this time. Even if you don’t normally use us for PR activity, if you have a story, we can help you get it out to the media. The media are also looking for businesses whose activities are affected by the virus and for any future planned event, for that matter. Just give either Emma or Tricia a call and we can guide you through what’s needed.
- Strategy Time: Many of our clients are using this time to plan for the recovery or to diversify, even temporarily. We’ve heard about distilleries that are using their distilling kit to make hand sanitizer, and pubs & hotels that are now offering takeaway food to be delivered. If you have a diversified service that can be of use to people at this challenging time, let us know and we can help communicate about it, we can even help you think about possible diversifications too – just pick up the phone and speak to Stephen or Tricia. Both directors have successfully steered businesses through the 2009 financial crash and are very able to identify market opportunities for clients when, often, it looks like there are none.
- Social, social, social: Keeping in touch with each other, as well as customers, will be very important over the coming weeks. We can help with the development of content strategies that drive online sales or just keep your customers engaged during this hiatus.
- Focus on the future: This may be a bleak time for businesses now, but it WILL end. You can be prepared for when the world returns to normal again. Some businesses are using this time to focus their activities on developing marketing materials that they often don’t have the time to during normal working circumstances. This includes brochure designs and customer magazines. Our Cunningly Good Websites packages offer a cost-effective way to build that new website you have always promised yourself! Keeping in touch with your customers at this time is crucial, as I’m sure you can imagine.
Please be assured that we will work with you to make sure we all get through this challenging period together and that we are grateful for your continued support of our small business in return.