Recent weeks have brought unprecedented challenges for everyone. Our response to COVID-19 has been to maintain focus on customer and employee safety, whilst continuing to deliver essential front-line services.
Our business continuity plans have been executed and proven to be robust. Incident management team structures were deployed early in this process on 5 March, allowing us to establish a more agile way of working within days. Most teams are now home-based and our call centre remains fully operational.
Steps are being taken to re-open some areas of our service in line with Government safety guidance. We continue to complete emergency repairs and safety works, whilst increasing the volume of maintenance work as we gradually return to normal operations. Our sales offices have re-opened for pre-booked appointments and we are in the process of re-mobilising our direct build development sites.
We are providing extra support to our customers in addition to our well established money advice, employment and skills programme. We have held wellbeing calls with over 10,000 customers, to ensure they are linked into local services or able to access the support they need directly from Orbit through our Better Days service.
Furthermore, our social and environmental responsibility programme, and our excellent relationships with local partners, means that we have been able to support the community response effort directly. We have contributed almost £50,000 to support foodbank efforts to supply vulnerable and low-income households, alongside providing grants for local charities to improve their ICT infrastructure so that they can continue to operate.
Orbit remains in a strong financial position and has a healthy balance sheet. We also have good working relationships with our long-term investor partners.
Our attention is firmly on our phased re-mobilisation plan. Our focus on customer safety, protecting employees and business resilience will remain as the Government’s exit strategy becomes clear.