Our response to COVID-19

Apr 08, 2020

We’re sure, like ourselves, your world has been somewhat turned upside down due to the COVID-19 outbreak. But business needs to continue as much as possible and you may be working from home, like all of us are at Astute. For many people, proactive recruitment is still necessary to fulfil business-critical roles or important future requirements. Clearly, this is a big challenge right now, but thanks to technologies such as video interviewing, online induction software and the ability to issue provisional job offers, we are seeing many companies embrace this opportunity to stay ahead of the curve and avoid the ‘dash for talent’ that will undoubtedly occur when the country returns to normality.

We want to make it clear to both candidates and clients, the things that we’re doing to help businesses achieve their recruitment objectives in this uncertain time and to also help those searching for roles. To assist businesses where recruitment is still essential, we have put together a selection of options to provide support which will apply to candidates that commence employment during this lockdown period.

A statement from our MD, Terry Buckel

Astute is a ‘people’ business. As we continue to closely monitor the COVID-19 outbreak, we’re focusing on keeping our clients, candidates, employees and contractors safe whilst working to keep providing our services with minimal disruption.

Following government advice, we’ve taken the appropriate measures to ensure we can offer continuous support to all our customers throughout this difficult time.

In this statement, you’ll find a summary of everything we’ve done so far. I’d like to reassure you

that we’re here to help. If you have any other questions or need anything else, please get in touch with your consultant or email callback@astutetechnical.co.uk

How we’re keeping our people safe

* In line with government advice, all our staff are working from home and using video conferencing instead of face-to-face meetings.

* We’ve suspended all business travel and are advising all staff to follow the government guidance for social distancing in their locations.

* We’re working to identify any employees who may be at higher risk because of an underlying condition and encouraging them to follow the relevant government advice.

* All our staff have access to health and wellbeing support services.

* We’ve created a process to keep our staff updated with guidance on preventing the spread of COVID-19, working remotely, managing mental health, and changes to our business practices in response to the situation.

How we’re serving our clients and contractors

* We’re staying in regular contact with our contractors and candidates so we can understand the impact of COVID-19 on their assignments and opportunities and we’re providing our contractors with appropriate guidance.

* We’re working with our clients to understand the measures they’re taking, supporting them in their implementation and, communicating these measures to our contractors.

* We’re also liaising with our clients on the use of video conferencing and other technology for interviewing, on-boarding, and other aspects of HR management.

* We’ve given our people systems and guidelines on remote working, leading remote teams, and managing communication and morale.

* Our staff are already experienced in working via video conferencing and instant


* We’ve put data protection and policies in place to keep our data secure and confidential whilst working remotely.

How we’re keeping our business running

* We’ve set up a cross-functional COVID-19 Working Party, led by our Operational Management Board, that holds twice-daily strategy meetings to plan for known and possible effects on our business operations, customers, staff and supply chain.

* We’ve re-allocated resources to ensure the continuity of our services.

* Using our crisis management arrangements, we’ve set up dedicated communication channels to spread information quickly and efficiently across all our business units.

* We’re monitoring advice from the World Health Organization and the Governments in all our locations.

* We’re continually updating our impact assessments and scenario planning across the business to keep pace with change and ensure continuity of service even in the worst-case scenarios.

How we’re ensuring the continuity of our supply chain

* We’re liaising with all our suppliers to make sure they have adequate communication measures and arrangements in place to ensure the continuity of service to Astute.

* We’re monitoring all our contractors and candidates engaged via the supply chain to make sure we understand the impact of COVID-19 on their assignments and opportunities.

* We’re liaising with our supply chain on using technology to help them continue to provide their services, including using video conferencing for interviewing and onboarding.

If you have any questions that we haven’t covered here, please get in touch with your consultant or email the business continuity team at callback@astutetechnical.co.uk.

Our response to COVID-19

Last updated April 2020