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Reconnecting: emerging from lockdown

The Coronavirus pandemic (or should I say the Corona-coaster?) has certainly had its ups and downs so far and I’m not sure that it’s an experience any of us will be queuing up to go through again in a hurry - even at a safe two-meter distance. Some people are understandably nervous about the future whilst others are desperate to get back to normal. I fall into the latter category, I’m very much looking forward to being back in the office, and not just for the lighting speed internet!

I’m very lucky to be a part of a company where my colleagues are committed, dedicated and take the services that we give to our clients, occupiers, service partners, colleagues and communities very seriously. We also like communicating which is lucky because constant dialogue has been absolutely paramount to dealing with this crisis effectively. We’ve embraced Teams and Zoom and have made sure we’ve kept in touch externally as well and ensuring our teams remain connected with plenty of meetings, weekly quizzes and fun video challenges.

When the government announced we were going into lockdown it was a surreal experience; a lot of us were in shock, wandering around the local supermarket like zombies staring in disbelief at the bare shelves. And when Boris announced The Coronavirus Act was coming into force and that occupiers could defer their rent (see our article on: The Coronavirus Act 2020 and its impact on Landlords and Occupiers) just two days before Quarter Day, we knew we had our work cut out managing our relationships with both occupiers and clients, being as empathetic and as supportive as possible to both sides.

As property managers, it’s been our duty to ensure all the buildings we manage have remained accessible, serviced, safe and compliant throughout lockdown. And as we always do at Ashdown Phillips, we quickly put a team together to get prepared and ready for welcoming our occupiers back to work safely.

We’ve been keeping in touch with our clients and have spoken with as many occupiers as possible to keep them updated on any changes we’ve been implementing and to get their feedback on when they are looking to reoccupy their spaces and to give them the opportunity to ask any questions. We’ve issued guidance outlining safety measures and building specific information, ready for their return. And we’ve also worked with our top service partners to put together specifications for all key building functions such as front of house, cleaning and M&E – which we’ve shared with our clients and occupiers to be fully transparent and to ensure consistency across all buildings. Occupiers can also contact us if they would like us to organise any services on their behalf, all they have to do is email: connect@ashdownphillips.com.

I couldn’t be prouder of all of our teams who have worked flat out, communicated brilliantly and have all pulled together to get through lockdown to be ready to reconnect and welcome our occupiers back to their work spaces safely; hopefully in the not too distant future!

Emma Page, Business Operations Manager