Hayley Pells of Avia Autos runs through returning to work and the approach that has been taken to resume services while making adaptations due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Returning to work was surprisingly difficult for me, it probably took far longer than it should to remember the various login requirements and passwords but my return was welcome.
The team here at Avia appear veteran in their developed routine of rotating staff to enable safe distancing and segregation of equipment. Some new routines may become embedded in our way of working far beyond the pandemic.
The phone has started to ring more often and we are seeing a return to uptake of preventative maintenance and MOT testing rather than crisis repair which, during the depths of lockdown, became our only work. I have been heartened by the uptake of MOT testing as I had concern over the impact the MOT extension could have on road safety. It has been a genuine pleasure to see our regulars and be able to hear of their experiences over the last three months.
PPE is becoming less of an issue and our suppliers have not allowed any stock piling, meeting out highly desired supplies with a fairness that reassures accumulation is not necessary as you will be able to purchase again. This also seems to translate to my motorists and we have not had to hide our supplies from casual view for quite some time.
We were also delighted in Bridgend Council’s decision to recognise our business as retail, this has meant we have become eligible for the rates relief for the coming year, a huge help which has dramatically changed the landscape of our financial forecasting, protecting jobs and enabling us to keep our prices at the 2019 rate, which I am sure will be of great relief to our motorists who are also facing uncertainty. Bridgend Council has gone further with an offer of training and a sneeze screen, developed especially for small business. On successful completion, each business will be awarded a sticker to display in a similar way to food hygiene, to offer instantly recognisable and council backed reassurance to our consumers.
We are quietly optimistic we will survive this, a good way to start the summer.