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NBRA Bodyshop Coronavirus Update – 24/03/2020


Published 24th March 2020

Boris Johnson’s announcement

Following the Prime Ministers announcement at 8:30 last night it is clear that the country is in a very difficult situation and everything that can be done to halt the spread of this virus must be done.

Essentially this means keeping people apart and as such the government has imposed stronger social distancing measures.

What does this mean for Bodyshops

Whilst bodyshops fall into the retail sector, “garages” are exempt from closing because we provide an essential service in keeping doctors, nurses, cleaning staff, health workers, van drivers, delivery drivers and everyone else we rely on mobile.

Therefore, bodyshops can stay open and your staff are entitled to travel to work.

Matching staffing levels

Whilst you may stay open if you choose to, claims are falling fast due to fewer people driving, that means you will soon have far more people than is necessary to operate your business. Under that situation you now have the option to “furlough” staff, essentially this means that they remain employed, but just stay at home. The government has agreed it will pay 80% of their wages up to a maximum of £2,500.

Today the NBRA will be providing you with resources to have those conversations and documentation to help you with this.

Parts

Increasingly over the past day or so, dealerships that supply parts have been closing. Whilst it is important to look after the mobility of “key workers”, without parts this will quickly become impossible and it may become necessary to “hibernate” your business. We have begun to work on some guidance for how you might do this too.

Summary

This is without doubt the most difficult time we have faced as an industry. The NBRA is working harder than ever to support its members when they need it most. Keep an eye on e-mail today for further bulletins and advice.

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