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Simons Host Building Business Resilience Workshop for Local Businesses

Businesses from across Lincolnshire recently attended a workshop hosted by Simons at the head office in Lincoln and facilitated by Climate East Midlands, to find out more about increasing business resilience to severe weather. The workshop was the second in a series of workshops planned across the East Midlands, and part of Climate East Midlands' Building Business Resilience (BBR) project, funded by the Environment Agency.

Delegates from a very diverse range of businesses met at Simons Group to hear how resilience in Lincolnshire could be improved through building improvements, IT systems, HR policies and by signing up to Environmental Agency flood warning services.

Presentations were made by John Ray from the Environment Agency, Sue Whitton from the Lincolnshire Joint Emergency Management Service and Dr Rosi Fieldson, Head of Environment at Simons Group. All stressed the need for regular review and update of business continuity planning and site incident planning including having drills or exercises to see what staff do.

Rosi introduced severe weather impacts on businesses and the economy. She described how leading businesses are starting to consider the effects that climate change could have on their operations and supply chains, and manage the risks accordingly. Rosi also demonstrated how resilience to severe weather and climate change has been built-in to prolong the life of the buildings Simons construct and design, keeping temperatures comfortable, and reducing the risk of flooding.

The workshop was a mixture of presentations, discussion and interactive exercises. Some interesting topics discussed included whether having a business continuity plan would lead to a reduced insurance premium, and the dialogue needed between businesses and their insurers. One of the participants was an insurance specialist so was able to provide useful insights.

Feedback on the workshop from participants was thoroughly positive:

"Very thought provoking and a useful networking opportunity."

"Very useful. We have a Business Continuity Plan in place - workshop raised a few ideas and further thoughts."

(Referring to the Simons Group presentation): "Good to have a case study of how business is taking action"

"I will share with colleagues, publish a report internally for further discussion with a view to action."

"First class. Thanks Simons."

For further information, have a look at the following websites:

Climate East Midlands - The Regional Climate Change Partnership www.climate-em.org.uk

Business Resilience health check questionnaire based tool allows businesses to check what priority vulnerabilities they should address: http://www.businessresiliencehealthcheck.co.uk/ 

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