Evander’s Central Operations is in Norwich, supporting 20 branches throughout the country. The UK’s leading provider of glazing and lock services, helping over 120,000 customers per year, they are a trusted brand with strong relationships in multiple sectors including insurance, facilities management and noise abatement.
When Covid-19 started affecting businesses in March, it was no different for Evander. They have continued to operate throughout lockdown supplying prompt responses to emergency calls and continuing with planned work where safe to do so. Their key focus during that time is the safety and welfare of their employees and clients.
“The very nature of our work is often providing support at the time of a crisis, such as a burglary, so there was never a question of our closing. We did have to furlough some of the team, with the majority moving to home working, but the nature of the business was such that some colleagues had to remain in our Central Operations office. It was a priority to ensure they felt safe in their place of work,” explains Ross Heyhoe, Commercial Manager. At a time when many businesses were closing office spaces, Evander was adapting working practices and office space, to ensure their colleagues were safe. Work zones were introduced, with one-way systems and dedicated toilets for each zone. PPE was provided, signage installed and a new cleaning regime introduced.
“In those early days, there was a state of confusion with a lack of practical guidance. Clients, knowing that we were involved in the safety and security of premises, were calling us asking for advice and support. Through our own experience of making our workspaces and procedures Covid-secure, and our clients asking for help, we were encouraged to look at diversifying,” explains Ross.
Evander now has five services under the header of Covid-19, all focused on the safety and wellbeing of employees and customers. The services being provided have been needed, and are used by Evander themselves, which means they can recommend and provide services with experience of use. “Because we had internal demand for the services, and had received requests from existing clients, we were confident of the demand before we diversified. We now provide specialist disinfecting cleaning, the hire of disinfecting equipment for larger spaces, safety graphics and screens to allow for social distancing, and smart home devices. We have extended our preventative boarding service to help clients with closed premises”, says Ross. Evander has now diversified further by providing a consultancy service to businesses that are re-opening to ensure that the space is clean, and occupiers are protected. The services have been well received and the new elements of the business continue to grow. Ross adds that “The new services we have introduced fit into our vision that we believe where you live and work should always be safe, secure and smart.”
In June, Evander unfurloughed a majority of their team.
“Where possible, we have enabled remote and homeworking for colleagues”, says Ross, “For some, they miss the social interaction and physically being in the office so we are meeting their mental wellbeing needs, as well as keeping them physically safe. We will review our procedures regularly, for our colleagues in the office and on-site. At the moment, we complete weekly disinfecting cleaning and have different grading of PPE available dependant on a triage process. Because we are using the systems and reviewing as required, we can provide relevant advice and services to our clients”.
Evander is confident that opportunities will continue to be presented. Ross states: “We have a high diversification of sectors that we work with and have confidence through our existing relationships that there will be continued demand for our services, and opportunities to be taken. We have a strong management team, and a great culture to take us forward post Covid-19”. “They plan on using the rest of the year to re-evaluate and consolidate processes and identify where their services will be best placed.