Welcome to our Business Update Bulletin, I hope you don’t mind us stealing a few minutes of your time to tell you what we’ve been up to for these last few crazy months. From a personal perspective, I can honestly say this has been the biggest challenge I’ve ever faced as a business leader, but it’s also been one of the most rewarding, as I can say with certainty that I’ve never been prouder of the amazing team of excellent people we are privileged to have working at NIS.
It’s been a roller coaster time for everyone, but we are now clearly focused on our own “Operation Bounceback” and ensuring that for us the legacy of COVID19 is a stronger and more agile business than we have ever had before, and I’m excited about the enormous opportunities that lie ahead.
Excellence in Engineering and Manufacturing #Poweredbypride
So what have we been doing, and more importantly why?
At the very early stages of the pandemic we identified 3 primary principles:
- To Protect the health and wellbeing of our people and their families.
- To Protect our Business and keep it operational
- To Protect our NHS resources and support the nations efforts to take whatever measures are necessary to get through the pandemic.
To Protect the health and wellbeing of our people and their families.
Before the pandemic the vast majority of our teams were based on the NIS site with very few people ever working from home, so it was a huge challenge for us to establish remote working arrangements, However, within a week of lockdown we had managed to get our entire engineering, project and business support teams set up and running with all of the associated risk assessments, IT services and equipment, a fantastic effort by all involved.
Obviously, we haven’t yet found a way to manufacture from home, so this was a completely different challenge! We took an operational pause to allow the director team to understand which of our many projects were deemed “essential” and to then transform the facilities into a COVID secure workplace to allow us to bring back a small team of manufacturing experts to allow our critical Nuclear Defence projects to proceed.
To keep our teams connected and keep everyone updated of the constantly changing situation , a daily ‘Team NIS’ communication was introduced by the MD, and within one week of the formal lockdown a ‘Working From Home Bulletin’ was published with a key focus on the lighter side of Lockdown Life.
Once the government guidelines were introduced for manufacturing businesses we were delighted to be able to confirm that the temporary arrangements that we’d put in place were easily converted into the required COVID secure requirements, which was no mean feat when you consider our SHEQ Manager had only started with us on the Monday following Lockdown!
You can meet Jordan and view our COVID secure facility here.
As long as protecting our physical health, we have also put a huge amount of effort into the protection of our mental health and wellbeing. We appointed a Welfare Co-Ordinator to ensure everyone had regular welfare checks, and we had an action-packed week recognising Mental Health Awareness week. This received a fantastic response with much sharing of vital information, team coffee mornings and lunches, a free time donated to everyone in the business to go and do something that was good for their soul!
To Protect our Business and keep it operational
Whilst several clients understandably put a temporary pause on some of our projects, others were deemed critical and with a level of flexibility, whilst working within our new boundaries, we have continued to deliver against our critical commitments throughout lockdown. and we are delighted to have been recognised for our endeavours:
”….Wanted to highlight the significance of your support and focus to AWE during this unprecedented time, Your efforts have been greatly appreciated by myself and the rest of the AWE leadership; thank you.”
To Protect our NHS resources and support the nations efforts to take whatever measures are necessary to get through the pandemic.
Recognising our capability could support the NHS, we were proud to see the products we have manufactured start making their way to Key Workers on the frontline. Taking their own initiative, several of our engineers explored the possibility of utilising the NIS 3D printer (and some of their personal ones) and started producing protective visors for Key Workers. A large number of these have now been distributed to Buckshaw Village Care Home, St Barnabas & St Pauls CofE School Blackburn and Eachstep Blackburn, a specialist Dementia care service, as well as more making their way to a cause close to the heart of a member of our Calleva Park team.
We have now gifted free of charge 7 intubation shield boxes, based on a design from The Manufacturing Technology Centre to local NHS sources at Furness General Hospital, Royal Lancaster Infirmary, Whiston Hospital and Countess Of Chester Hospital, with a further 3 to be gifted shortly.
We are hoping to be adding to our team of #excellentpeople over the coming months so please keep an eye on our careers page and Linkedin page for forthcoming vacancies or drop your CV to firstname.lastname@example.org