Budget summary - When Philip Hammond delivered the last Budget 499 days ago, in the midst of the Brexit negotiations, he could not have imagined that the next Budget would be dominated by the spread of a lethal contagion. Nor is it likely that he thought Rishi Sunak – then a relatively inconspicuous junior minister – would be the one delivering it, with Mr Hammond having resigned and lost his seat in Parliament in the meantime.
We are in unprecedented times and facing uncertainty as the Coronavirus pandemic evolves. We want to assure you that your team at PKF Francis Clark is fully committed to the safety and health of our employees and our communities while ensuring minimal disruption to our work and client service during this critical time.
Some of the specific steps we have taken are:
- We have a Covid-19 team which meets daily to review the latest Government guidelines.
- We have the technology infrastructure for our entire firm to work remotely. This has been tested and we are prepared should we need to close an office.
- We have the ability to use video conferencing and Skype.
- We have reviewed our business to identify critical services and taken steps to secure these (e.g. payroll).
- Our staff receive regular communication updates and all vulnerable people have been requested to work from home. Our employees know what action to take if they or a member of their family have any symptoms.
- We have cancelled or postponed all our events, networking and training in the short-term and we are looking at different ways to deliver these.
Things are likely to get challenging over the coming weeks and months and we are here to help.
KEEP CALM AND HAVE A PLAN
We thought we would share some advice and actions from our own Covid-19 response team:
- Employees – ensure everyone is aware of the latest guidance and protocols are in place for their welfare. Ensure they can work as efficiently as possible in the event that they are required to do so remotely. Restrict non-essential travel, look at home working, flexible working and consider key employee cover.
- Cashflow – consider the impact on your cashflow of disruption to your business. Talk to your funders as soon as possible.
- IT – stress test your IT infrastructure for various scenarios such as increased remote working.
- Finance – review your existing finance / lending documents to ensure you have the flexibility you are likely to need. Arrange additional sources of capital should cashflow become an issue.
- Suppliers – keep communicating with key suppliers to ensure their continuity of supply and source alternative suppliers as back-up.
- Customers – provide reassurance, manage expectations and inform them of your contingency plans.
We hope you find this helpful as you plan for what’s to come.