While the pandemic has been devastating to businesses throughout the nation, we are so grateful that we are still standing. The first UK lockdown brought panic to the nation's doorstep and meant a temporary closure of the business and employees furloughed. However, a few staff members continues to work through the lockdown to ensure our customer's needs were still being met.
Caring for our customers
Laura Young, Scheduling Team Leader, has worked for OutsideClinic for almost six years and has proven herself to be a hard worker. However, nothing prepared her for what was to come after that first lockdown announcement.
"Although it was a difficult time, I'm grateful for everything I learnt during the lockdown and for everyone I got to work with. Everyone who stayed in the office worked hard and stayed so positive. I'm glad that we were able to stay and help the patients that needed us," said Laura.
While it was important for the business to temporarily close during the first lockdown, we also had many customers who needed us during this time. As a result, a small team of staff continued working as we wanted to reassure our patients that we were still there for them.
"At the beginning of the first lockdown, we still had a lot of appointments and glasses outstanding, so we needed to stay in the office to try and get these out to our patients. We also needed to be available to take any incoming calls from patients to ensure that they were getting the service that they deserved,
"Most patients were very grateful we were able to send their glasses out to them and that we were still able to answer call and queries. A few were frustrated that we were unable to visit, but most were very understanding. Mainly, they just wanted to know we were still there and that we would be back to visit them as soon as we could," said Laura.
Change for everyone
While many people in the UK were furloughed and getting to grips with the change in their daily routine, Laura and the team that continued working also had to get used to many office changes.
"I learnt a lot working through the lockdown. The main focus was to get all the glasses out to our customers and be available for any calls or queries. I learnt how to use lots of different systems whilst helping in other roles. I got to know people I would have rarely spoken to in 'normal' work life, and it was very quiet; going from 25 people in an office to three was a change," she said.
Along with the vital work that the remaining staff completed in the office, we also felt it was essential to get the office ready for the rest of the workforce, who we were keen to get back into the office as soon as it was safe to do so.
"It was bizarre knowing everyone was at home, but I felt very safe in the office. The building was prepped to welcome everyone back, and my role was to help when staff returned to work with explaining the new office rules and procedures."
While the pandemic has been devastating to businesses throughout the nation, we are so grateful that we are still standing and have the complete OutsideClinic team working again to continue helping our patients when they need us most.