Covid-19 – Business Update
In line with Government policy and in the interests of the health of our staff and clients, we have decided to close the office from Monday 23 March for the foreseeable future. All staff will now work from home and all client meetings are postponed for the time being.
We outline below how we will be managing certain aspects of the business. We are also producing ongoing bulletins which can be found in the links.
How this affects our clients and how we will keep in touch
We hope that our clients will see very few adverse effects of this policy as we will endeavour to keep up communications and our usual services.
The processes we have put in place are as follows:
- Buying/selling/switching investments
Those working from home have direct and secure access to our database and can communicate with all Providers. This means that investments can be made, fund switches undertaken and investments sold in the usual way.
- Communicating with us
We wish to maintain communication with our clients. The easiest way for you to communicate with us during this time is to send us an email and if you wish us to ring you please include your phone number. We appreciate that many of you do not have access to emails, in which case simply ring the office and leave a message on the answer phone. These messages will be picked up on a daily basis and we will respond.
If you would be happy for us to communicate with you via email please let us have your up to date e mail address for our records. Please be aware that we are still very happy to communicate via post and phone as normal.
- Maintenance of the office
A member of staff (who lives in walking distance of the office) will be visiting the office on a daily basis to review post, check the answer phone and deal with any banking which is required. We will also be able to issue newsletters/bulletins from time to time.
Meetings with Carole do not need to cease, they will simply be done by telephone rather than face to face. Shelley will be running the diary in the usual way, so if you would like to talk to Carole please e mail Carole (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Shelley (email@example.com) and an appointment can be made. We are anxious that clients make full use of this because we do not want any one worrying about their financial situation.
Many of you may never have had reason to visit our website www.nichollstevens.com. We will be using this to post up to date bulletins and we are anticipating running a ‘fun corner’ to keep those on 12 weeks isolation amused – we reckon that there are at least 224 of you over the age of 70!
- Pension Schemes
The administration on all our pension schemes, including monthly premium work, will continue uninterrupted and as schemes come up for renewal we will be carrying out all the necessary work. Most of you communicate with Carol Rowson (Head of the Pensions Department) on all administration matters. Please continue to address all emails to her (firstname.lastname@example.org). If employees need individual advice please refer them to the ‘other Carole’, Carole Nicholls (email@example.com)
Two of the most important points:
We know that all our clients are really worried about the falls in the market place. Our advice remains to stay invested but we will be keeping you up to date as hopefully the markets stabilise and we will continue to send you valuations and reports to our usual time scale.
This is the most important message: we hope you all stay well. Although isolation may be boring we must all remain positive and, who knows, we may all develop new interests and hobbies. Do please all keep in touch, let us know what you are doing and we will do likewise.
Carole Nicholls March 2020
Initial Newsletter, 2nd March 2020
Our initial newsletter, sent in early March 2020, looks at investments during the period of uncertainty and market volatility at the start of March, as the Coronavirus had spread out of China and Italy were seeing a concerning levels of cases (they would enter lockdown on 9th March 2020).
Covid-19 Bulletin 1
Covid-19 Bulletin 1, distributed on 18th March 2020, covers how we will be temporarily shutting the office from the 23rd March 2020 and outlines how we plan to keep our services running as normal as possible during this tricky time.
The words of this bulletin can be found on the main body of this page, but the circulated newsletter can be found here for reference.
Covid-19 Bulletin 2
This is a more light-hearted bulletin, taking a look at industry and businesses in specific parts of the country.
Carole also puts forward the idea of the ‘Investment Race’ where we take a look at how different funds react over time to the current market volatility.
This bulletin can be found here
Covid-19 Newsletter for Employers and Employees
Our Covid-19 Newsletter for Employers and Employees, issued on the 25th March 2020, looks at the inital government proposals for financial assistance to businesses and individuals.
This newsletter can be found here.
Covid-19 Newsletter for Defined Benefit Schemes
Our Covid-19 Newsletter for Defined Benefit Schemes looks at issues facing Trustees of Defined Benefit Schemes at the current time.
This newsletter can be found here.