Recognising businesses which support SMEs to be more resilient, helping them prepare for, respond to and recover from emergencies including natural catastrophes or cyber disruption.
Disruptions can happen at any time to businesses of any size. In 2016, the impact of one of the wettest winters on record is still being felt by thousands of small business owners in the north of England and Scotland. And in 2015, 74% of UK businesses reported a security breach, many of which cost businesses thousands of pounds in lost revenue. It has never been more important for UK businesses to engage with small to medium sized businesses on resilience by helping them to prepare, respond and recover.
The Barclays Building Stronger Business Award recognises companies that help small to medium sized businesses to prepare for, respond to and recover from emergencies. These may result from natural catastrophes such as flooding, civil unrest, economic or social upheaval, cyber disruption from crime or from modern challenges in a more digitally connected world.
Flood Response, Recovery & Resilience Programme
Responding to the major floods in the North West during the winter of 2015/16 Adler & Allan supported more than 250 small and medium sized businesses to get back on their feet. The emergency response and environmental services company won praise for advising and educating businesses and helping them reduce their reliance on reactive flood mitigation measures.
Adler & Allan provided a ‘pop-up’ advice centre in Kendal, Cumbria, which offered immediate advice and signposting for those affected by the floods. Other successful drop-in centres have sprung up across Cumbria. The company has now instigated a new system to provide a hub at any UK location affected by an emergency. Additionally they ensure a sustainable approach by promoting products like Soakbags - a lightweight and more efficient alternative to sandbags - and SOCK-it, which removes contaminants from flood water.
Aviva estimates that 60% of UK businesses have no plans in place in case of flooding. During the aftermath of the devastating floods in the North West during the winter of 2015/16, the insurance firm’s claims team were among the first businesses to support companies (and lives) to get back to normal.
Aviva linked up with British Red Cross and 100 of its expert Claim Service team members to run ‘psycho-social workshops’, supporting customers with the emotional impacts floods can cause. After Storm Desmond, drones were used to help to assess affected properties – typical of Aviva’s drive to lead the way supporting innovation in its industry. They also worked with construction companies to champion the use of more resilient materials in new developments, and reduce the environmental impact of claims.
Small Change to BIG CHANGE
In Your Face Advertising signposts SMEs to information about resilience, including cyber disruption to help their customers put appropriate plans in place.
The company also offers affordable advertising options for smaller enterprises to advertise their products and services, in part thanks to its online advertising software and the products its customers can have printed up are all environmentally sustainable thanks to being 100% recyclable.
Meanwhile as a sign of its commitment to the community, the London-based company pledges a percentage of its profits to local social projects.
Cyber and data security
Worldpay processes digital payments for more 40% of the UK high street, so its customers' resilience is crucial. The company ensures a great deal of attention is targeted at SMEs to help them with cyber and data security. Recent developments include assessing, then providing security services to smaller firms dramatically reducing the likelihood of those customers to suffering a security breach. Its infrastructure and services are aimed to be scalable and available to any customers who wish to make use of them.