Covid-19 Omicron Update
15 December 2021
Covid-19 Omicron Variant Further Contingencies & Service Impacts
As UK positive case numbers continue to rise because of the Omicron variant, we are providing a further update on our contingencies and operational impacts.
Community spread of the Omicron variant has continued to increase and the Government continues to warn of further and significant increase in the days and weeks ahead, with rates potentially doubling every two to three days.
There is currently no material operational impact to services within the Circle Express network, but we will communicate any changes through the Customer Comms portal and via Account and Operational managers.
We have implemented a centralised reporting system to track staff and driver absencesacross the network which will allow us to monitor and report risks to resource as they occur.
This will allow us to track known absences resulting from Covid or self-isolation, but there may be additional cases not reported directly to us by the self-employed drivers. We will continue to monitor and report on potential operational impacts to services if they occur.
Implementation of contingencies
In order to protect front line resource, we continue to operate contingencies designed to mitigate risks of transmission in the workplace and to reflect updated Government restrictions and guidance.
We now require visitors to our sites to wear face coverings and to observe social distancing wherever possible and we ask that our customers advise their teams of this requirement.
Counter service restrictions – we are reintroducing social distancing protocols at our depots to serve customers and visiting drivers one at a time, to prevent visitors to our sites from grouping around the office counters and warehouse entrances so we can reduce risk of transmission.
Visitors will be served at office counters on the basis of ‘one in and one out’, so that they are served individually at counters. We ask that any visitor to our sites respect the 2m distance rule to other people around them, to observe social distancing protocols.
Our teams will continue to work diligently to serve visitors as quickly as possible so they can continue on their business once served, but within the process listed above. We understand that this may create some frustration on occasion as it may take longer for drivers to collect or deliver freight and we ask you for your understanding and support in implementing this protocol.
Any individual jobs delayed because of these factors will be updated as, ’Delay in collection due to Covid-19 protocols’.
We have reintroduced the ‘no contact’ collection and delivery protocols for our Sameday Courier teams – to ensure we maintain social distancing insofar as we are able for the protection of our teams and our customers.
This means that we are not able to obtain a customer signature on a mobile device or paperwork. However, we will continue to obtain the name of the recipient upon delivery and enter this as the POD and add the words ‘Covid-19’ in the signature.
The Covid-19 Contingency Project team will continue to meet as required to review service impacts, progress contingency actions and assess the effectiveness of contingency actions.
We will continue to keep customers informed of any individual job delays through the normal channels and will issue general updates on any further impacts to front line resource as they occur.
The safety and well-being of our staff, partners, contractors and customers remains our priority during this period and we will continue to work with you to maintain our services wherever possible. Further periodic updates will be issued as the situation changes.
We will endeavour to keep your business updated with any impact to service levels and estimated delivery times resulting from continuing Covid-19 contingencies and social distancing protocols on a job-by-job basis. If you have specific concerns, please do not hesitate to contact your Account Manager or local Branch team for further local information.