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Creating an adaptable business

Added 18 May 2020 by GFORCE

For many businesses, recent weeks have been some of the most challenging in history. Coronavirus changed normal operations across the globe virtually overnight and company leaders were left with difficult decisions to make in a short space of time. Here, Simon Ward, group sales director for GFORCE Sportswear, explains how businesses can put themselves in the best possible position to survive such unprecedented times and what the team behind GFORCE Sportswear have been doing over recent weeks to adapt and remain operational.

There’s no doubt this has been an incredibly hard time for everyone both personally but also for educational institutions, businesses and, in turn, the wider economy.

So, how can businesses such as ours survive this major kind of upheaval and change? The key is being adaptable. Those that use their experience, customer knowledge, and make the best of the creative and innovative minds of their team will be better placed to stand the test of time.

We had to scan the marketplace of our whole company and make some very quick decisions about our key priorities and where our focus would be, based on customer demand.

One of the businesses in our group, Grahame Gardner Ltd, is a UK national healthcare uniform provider to the NHS and private healthcare. As a contracted medical uniform supplier to the NHS and a provider to NHS Supply Chain on the textile framework, Grahame Gardner has been confirmed as an essential business. It has been as part of this wider group of businesses that GFORCE Sportswear remains open and operational.  As a result of the COVID-19 crisis our GFORCE team have diversified and focused their efforts where it’s been needed most - working in conjunction with our healthcare customers to ensure that uniforms and protective garments are delivered to frontline staff as quickly and efficiently as possible.

The entire group has endeavoured to support and assist in response to the current international pandemic in a variety of ways, adapting our usual business operation to where it is needed. We have switched production to meet high level demand for workwear and diversified by sourcing and supplying new PPE products including bespoke face masks and recyclable visors as well as producing new anti-bacterial hand sanitisers, and broader range of disposable PPE items.

Overtime has come into play to ensure on-time deliveries to the frontline and we have made new supply routes quickly operational to shorten lead times. As a family company with a history in Leicester of over 110 years, we have continued to make donations and support our local community in whatever way we can.

So, despite us working collectively across our wider group to ensure Grahame Gardner can support in this national crisis, it is important to say that business is open as usual for our GFORCE Sportswear customers and just this week we have seen a slow return to the reopening of golf and tennis clubs, basketball courts and angling in the UK. Physical education and team sports is an incredibly important part of the society we know, and love and we are really proud to be part of that supplying high quality sportswear to individuals and teams. We recognise it has been a very difficult time for everyone but with a glimmer of light at the end of tunnel, we want to reassure all our loyal customers that our business is strong and we are here for you, as soon as you need us.

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