COVID 19 info

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak show home visits are by appointment only.

Sales staff are working and will endeavour to answer all enquiries. However, regrettably we may be slower than normal in getting back to you. Contact details for each of our developments can be found here. 

We are saddened and sorry that for some customers we will not be in a position to hand over their home on the date they expected. At this this time enquiries from these customers are our priority.

We hope you and your family are safe.


Text Alert Request


COVID-19 updates from Chief Executive, Innes Smith

16.10.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 46

Dear All,

This week we have seen the Test & Protect process working in practice and I am keen to share some of the learning from that experience with you all.  This will ensure you keep yourself safe and help minimise unnecessary business interruption, to allow you to continue to work and earn, when it’s safe to do so.

When someone tests positive for coronavirus, the aim of Test & Protect is to identify anyone that has spent significant time with that person, where they have been face to face without social distancing for more than 15 minutes.  The contact tracers will help that person decide who they need to contact, based on how long they spent with each other and how physically close they were.  Anyone contacted by Test & Protect must self-isolate for 14 days and should not go back to work until you have had a telephone ‘return to work’ completed by your manager.

Our aim therefore, to stop the spread of this nasty virus and protect your ability to earn a living, must be to ensure wherever possible that you are leaving two metres between yourself and colleagues.  Where jobs require you to be closer, please minimise this time to less than 15 minutes and ensure suitable face coverings are worn.  I acknowledge that on a construction site there will be instances where certain tasks mean that this is difficult.  However following these simple rules the best we can will make it much easier to identify those that should be traced if you are faced with the unfortunate position of testing positive.  It will also help reduce the number of instances of unnecessary self-isolation, ensuring only those where the risk of spread was likely are contacted by Test & Protect. 

It might feel safe to be close to colleagues who you work with every day but that familiarity can lead to complacency.  Please be alert with this, make sensible choices when it comes to undertaking tasks, travel and how you spend your lunch, and speak to your line manager or HR if you have any concerns about your ability to do any of this.  This goes for those working onsite as well as those visiting any of our offices.

In addition, to further support the Scottish Government Strategy for Test & Protect, from Monday it will be compulsory for anyone coming into our sites and offices with a mobile phone, company or personal, to have the Test & Protect App downloaded.  This will include sub-contractors.  

Take care

Innes

09.10.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 45

Dear All,

The restrictions announced by the First Minister this week remind us just how serious this all is.  Our lives will unfortunately not return to any kind of normality in the foreseeable future.  

We are very pleased that we are able to continue to work safely on our sites to deliver the homes for our customers and protect the continuity of our business.  

A change we must adapt to however, relates to the use of face coverings.  Please note that from Monday 12 October:  

  • If for any reason you require to visit one of the offices, face coverings must be worn in communal settings such as enclosed corridors, staff kitchens and toilets.  
  • These rules will also apply to our site offices and welfare facilities (canteens, toilets and drying room areas).  
  • Face coverings will now be mandatory for all Sales Executives, when not behind the protective screens, and customers will be advised that face coverings must be worn whilst visiting our Sales & Marketing suites.

Please also remember to register your attendance at any of our offices by emailing the relevant ‘Test & Protect’ internal email address.  Plus, I’d urge you all again to ensure you have downloaded the NHS Test and Protect App.  This is compulsory for those with company mobile phones.  The introduction of these additional control measures will assist us in helping to restrict the spread of the virus.  

Remember, if you are struggling emotionally or practically with any of this, please reach out to your line manager or HR and please do utilise the resources I have highlighted previously if you need or want additional independent support.  

Take Care  

Innes

02.10.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 44

Dear All,

Not surprisingly the First Minister allowed no further easing of restrictions when she addressed Parliament yesterday.  We’ve all just got to hope that the restrictions in place at the moment are effective at reducing the rate of spread.

With employees based across the country I’m aware that each of our experiences with this will be different.  However, no matter where we are, we cannot be complacent.  Please keep yourselves safe and do all you can to stop the spread of this virus. 

This week Sandy, Michelle and I presented the Group’s results.  Slightly different this year than the annual trip to London, we presented via Zoom from the boardroom in Elgin.  The good news we had to share was received very positively by investors.  The company is in a great place to deliver growth in the years to come and, as I said earlier this week, I want to thank you all for the part you have played in our success.

This is the last month of furlough with the UK Government Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme coming to an end on 31 October.  This will also mean the end of my weekly Covid-19 Updates which I had committed to do whilst staff were furloughed.  I am pleased to say however that our staff newsletter ‘On Site’ is now in production again and this will allow us to share news and achievements across the business.

Take care

Innes

25.09.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 43

Dear All,

I am sure each of you has been following the government announcements carefully this week.

Stricter rules in place mean we all need to adjust again to keep this virus under control.  Whilst Nicola Sturgeon remains committed to reviewing the position every three weeks, it’s likely that we will be living our lives in a restricted way over the winter months, and this will inevitably mean a continuation of home based working where possible.

Continuing my message from last week on wellbeing, I wanted to draw your attention to our Employee Assistance Programmes.  These programmes are an employee benefit offering you information, guidance and/or counselling on emotional and practical challenges.  I would encourage anyone looking for additional support to engage with these free services.  I will arrange for HR to cascade the appropriate information to you.  Again, this advice is for those patient employees who remain on furlough as well as those active in our work places.

Turning to positive news from the Scottish Government today, a second year of the First Home Fund is to run from April 2021 to March 2022.  This will greatly assist First Time Buyers with up to £25,000 available towards their purchase and, with a price cap of £250,000, will support sales across our developments.  This year’s fund is due to close to new applications next week and we will be putting a strong message out to customers to move fast to secure their new home for completion this winter.

Take care

Innes

18.09.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 42

Dear All,

As part of the Scottish Government’s Test & Protect Strategy, an app has been launched by NHS Scotland.  I want all employees who have a company mobile phone to download and activate this app today.

The ‘Protect Scotland’ app is a free, mobile phone app designed to help us protect each other, reduce the spread of coronavirus and avoid further lockdowns.  The app will alert you if you have been in close contact with another app user who tests positive for coronavirus. Further information can be found here.

As well as insisting employees who have a company mobile phone (which has capability for applications) download the app, we will also strongly encourage subcontractors and visitors to our sites/offices to do the same.  This is all about keeping our business going and ensuring we are doing all we can to keep the virus at bay.  

Over the coming weeks we will also be exploring other resources that can offer support to employees whilst the restrictions continue.  For example, colleagues in SHEQ this week highlighted ‘Breathing Space’ which is a confidential phone line for anyone feeling low, anxious or depressed.  Please find more details here.  Whilst your line managers and HR are always available to offer support, independent tools and/or organisations can provide additional guidance on how to help manage your wellbeing.  

This advice is for those patient employees who remain on furlough as well as those active in our work places.

Take care

Innes

16.09.2020 - Test and Protect Reminder

Good afternoon,

I hope you are all keeping well.

Further to our ongoing communications regarding Test and Protect, we are very keen to keep this guidance fresh in all our minds. 

Our guidance sheet for employees is detailed below. 

To reiterate, in any of these circumstances your Manager will discuss with you your ability to work from home, otherwise self-isolation continues to be treated as sickness absence.

Managers should ensure they let a member of the HR team know as soon as someone reports a COVID related absence.

Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact HR (contact details below).

Many thanks and take care.

Heather

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Self-isolation guidance for Employees

The main symptoms of coronavirus are a new continuous cough, fever or loss of, or change in, sense of smell or taste. 

What should I do if I become unwell with Coronavirus symptoms at work? 

Ø  Notify your Manager that you feel unwell and leave work to self-isolate straight away. Wear a face covering on route (available from your Site Manager or the H&S dept.) and avoid public transport. 

Ø  Visit www.nhsinform.scot to arrange to get tested. If you can’t get online, call 0800 028 2816.

Ø  Until you have been tested and told if it safe to leave home, you should not come to work.

What happens if I test positive for Coronavirus?

Ø  Please contact a member of HR to discuss your result.

Ø  You need to continue to self-isolate for 10 days from the time your symptoms started.

Ø  NHS contact tracers will interview you and get in touch with people you have been in close contact with, and tell them they must self-isolate for 14 days.

Ø  If you feel well enough after 10 days, and have not had a high temperature for 48 hours (without taking any medicines to treat a high temperature) you can return to work*. 

What if the test is negative?

Ø  Please contact HR to discuss your return to work*.

I have been informed by an NHS contact tracer that I have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive. What should I do? 

Ø  If you are contacted at work please notify your Manager and leave work to self-isolate straight away for 14 days.

Ø  You may be asked to work from home if you are able to and are not unwell.

Ø  If you develop symptoms within the 14 days, you must stay at home for 10 days from the day your symptoms began. You should do this even if it takes you over the 14-day isolation period.

Ø  Towards the end of the 14 day period (or extended period due to developing symptoms), please contact HR to discuss your return to work*.

I live with someone who has symptoms or who has tested positive. 

Ø  Please follow advice above for those who have been told by the NHS they have been in close contact with someone who has coronavirus and self-isolate immediately.

Ø  If the person with symptoms tests negative, everyone in your household can end isolation and you can return to work.*

In all circumstances, please request a Self-Isolation note from NHS inform and email HR through a copy as soon as possible. 

*Before you return to work you should contact HR who will arrange a “return to work” telephone interview for you and your Manager. You should not return to work before this time

IMPORTANT HR CONTACT DETAILS

Cara Dent | HR Administrator (Elgin) | cara.dent@springfield.co.uk | 07880 341 184

Sarah Cantlay | HR Administrator (Elgin) | sarah.cantlay@springfield.co.uk | 07921 224 436

Diane Kemp | Senior HR Advisor (Elgin) | diane@springfield.co.uk | 07495 178 262

Yvonne Harper | HR Administrator (Larbert) | yvonne.harper@springfield.co.uk | 07384 825 716

Marc Dickson | HR Administrator (Larbert) | marc.dickson@springfield.co.uk | 07712 573 628

Jaide Johnston | Senior HR Advisor (Larbert) | jaide.johnston@springfield.co.uk | 07794 050 194

11.09.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 41

Dear All,

A week on from the Health & Safety address from SHEQ Group Director Ken Millar, and the message delivered seems even more valid.  The tightening of restrictions by the First Minister yesterday demonstrates that unfortunately this virus is not going away and we all need to continue to do our bit to minimise its spread. 

During her speech, Nicola Sturgeon confirmed that working from home remains the “default position” but also said that planning has begun on guidance for a phased return to offices “when the time is right”. 

If you have any particular support needs to allow you to continue to work effectively from home, please raise them with your line manager.  Please also ensure you claim the £26 tax free allowance that you are entitled to within your monthly expenses.  This allowance is for expenses directly related to working at home and it will continue to be available until the Scottish Government confirm we can start working from offices again.

With a high proportion of our employees now back working, my thanks goes to those remaining on furlough.  I truly appreciate your patience. 

Take Care 

Innes

04.09.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 40

Dear All,

This week, to remind you of the continued importance of health & safety across our operations, I am inviting our Group SHEQ Director Ken Millar to address you:  

Colleagues,

We are now starting to see more activity taking place across the Group, however we still have a global pandemic that we need to ensure we are doing everything within our control to manage. 

Recent restrictions imposed on Aberdeen and certain areas within Greater Glasgow, are a timely reminder that this virus is still out there. We have also had notification that a sub-contractor on one of our sites tested positive for COVID-19 this week and the Scottish Government’s Track and Trace process has now kicked in.  

It is great to see such a large proportion of our employees back from furlough and it is clear that there is a desire for normality to return.  However we must remember that Scottish Government guidance is for remote working to be the default position for those who can do so.  Our offices will remain closed until we get the green light from the Scottish Government.  There may be circumstances where working from home is not an option, and you should have that discussion with your line manager. 

The SHEQ Team is currently working on what control measures will need to be in place for the offices to be reoccupied when the time is right.  We will keep you updated with progress on this.  In the meantime if you need to visit the offices to collect something or access printers, please ensure that social distancing is maintained whilst you are there and that you use the hand sanitiser that is available.   

Whilst COVID-19 is a risk that we now need to contain, all other risks that were in place pre COVID-19 still exist and need to be managed.  I wish to remind you in particular of the importance of following health & safety protocols in place to help prevent incidents on site. It is upon us all to make sure we continue to manage the risks we will encounter on a daily basis.

Everything we are currently doing is designed to protect the Health & Safety of our workforce, our sub-contractors, our customers and anyone else that may be affected by our operations. With regards to COVID-19, we include all of your families in this. It is imperative that we abide by guidance and utilise control measures to do our bit to stop the spread of this virus.  

 If you have any questions or are unsure about anything, please in the first instance speak to your Line Manager, or contact a member of the Health & Safety Team at any time. 

Stay Safe.

Regards 

Ken Millar

Group SHEQ Director

Take care

 Innes

28.08.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 39

Dear All,

I am pleased to report that we are well and truly on our way back to fully functioning with 90% of employees having now returned to work.  For those remaining on furlough, we hope that this progress offers you some light towards the end of the tunnel.  Please continue to engage with your managers, particularly where those who are shielding have any particular concerns that we could help with. 

The wellbeing of our workforce has always been a critical consideration for Springfield – and it has been our first priority throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Myself and Sandy are enormously proud of the way our workforce responded to the lockdown and continue to be proud of how well you have all transitioned as the business strengthens itself for the future.

I was delighted to hear about two employee recognitions awarded this week.  Alan Brown at Dalmarnock and Callum Farrance at Ballingry were both recognised for going above and beyond in their work for the Partnerships business.  

Returning to the importance of wellbeing, gyms in Scotland will reopen on Monday.  We hope that you will take the opportunity to continue any fitness drives you may have commenced during lockdown into the winter months.  For anyone not already taking advantage of this employee benefit, please arrange a visit to Moray Sports Centre or Bannatyne’s to sign up for membership.

Keep up the great work and please take care

Innes

21.08.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 38

Dear All,

Yesterday marked another three week review of the Scottish Government Guidance on Covid-19.  With not too much movement in the steady progress already made in Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon advised that we need to remain in phase 3.

There was some good news on the earlier than planned re-opening of gyms, swimming pools and indoor sports courts from the end of August, meaning that we can soon take advantage again of our corporate memberships.  Bingo fans will also be pleased to note it’s return from Monday!

A similar pattern of steady progress is being mirrored in our business, with sales levels returning to a healthy but more normalised level following the surge of pent up demand when we re-opened late June.  We are proud to be able to offer home buyers the types of homes and developments that are being aspired to in a post-covid environment.  With an LBTT holiday in place and First Home Fund and Help to Buy available, the strong message to potential customers is that now is a great time to buy. 

We do not yet know when we will return to office based working but will keep this under review and will offer plenty of notice of the intentions.  In the meantime if there is anything you need to support you in working from home effectively, please do discuss this with your line manager.

I continue to send the same message to employees who remain on furlough – sincere thanks for your patience and please do get in touch if there’s anything that you wish to discuss.

Take Care

Innes

14.08.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 37

Dear All, 

For the parents amongst us I hope you have had a great week, waving the kids back off to school at long last.  It feels like we can begin to get some normality in our routines again.

This week I held the first, formal Group Directors session since February (albeit on a virtual basis) and was pleased by the optimism being shared on the good, steady progress being made across the Group.  I was also particularly pleased to note that all Springfield Partnership directly employed staff are now out of furlough.  A strong signal for the Group moving forward. 

Whilst we all need to remain cautious about coronavirus and the ripple effect it has had across so many sectors of society, I am extremely confident that Springfield will be in a good position to overcome challenges in a post-covid environment

For those remaining patient employees who are still on furlough, I continue to send you thanks and encourage you to engage with your managers if there’s anything at all that you wish to discuss.

Take Care 

Innes

10.08.2020 - Test and Protect Update

Hi all,

I hope you and your families are well.

Further to our recent communications regarding Test and Protect, we are again keen to remind you of the guidance and highlight that the 7 day self-isolation period has now been increased to a 10 day self-isolation period.             

Our updated guidance sheet for employees is detailed below. 

To reiterate, in any of these circumstances your Manager will discuss with you your ability to work from home, otherwise self-isolation continues to be treated as sickness absence. 

Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact HR (contact details below).

Many thanks and take care.

 Heather

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Self-isolation guidance for Employees

The main symptoms of coronavirus are a new continuous cough, fever or loss of, or change in, sense of smell or taste.

What should I do if I become unwell with Coronavirus symptoms at work?

• Notify your Manager that you feel unwell and leave work to self-isolate straight away. Wear a face covering on route (available from your Site Manager or the H&S dept.) and avoid public transport. 

• Visit www.nhsinform.scot to arrange to get tested. If you can’t get online, call 0800 028 2816.

• Until you have been tested and told if it safe to leave home, you should not come to work.

What happens if I test positive for Coronavirus?

• Please contact a member of HR to discuss your result.

• You need to continue to self-isolate for 10 days from the time your symptoms started.

• NHS contact tracers will interview you and get in touch with people you have been in close contact with, and tell them they must self-isolate for 14 days.

• If you feel well enough after 10 days, and have not had a high temperature for 48 hours (without taking any medicines to treat a high temperature) you can return to work*. 

What if the test is negative?

• Please contact HR to discuss your return to work*.

I have been informed by an NHS contact tracer that I have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive. What should I do?

• If you are contacted at work please notify your Manager and leave work to self-isolate straight away for 14 days.

• You may be asked to work from home if you are able to and are not unwell.

• If you develop symptoms within the 14 days, you must stay at home for 10 days from the day your symptoms began. You should do this even if it takes you over the 14-day isolation period.

• Towards the end of the 14 day period (or extended period due to developing symptoms), please contact HR to discuss your return to work*.

I live with someone who has symptoms or who has tested positive.

• Please follow advice above for those who have been told by the NHS they have been in close contact with someone who has coronavirus and self-isolate immediately.

• If the person with symptoms tests negative, everyone in your household can end isolation and you can return to work.* 

In all circumstances, please request a Self-Isolation note from NHS inform and email HR through a copy as soon as possible.

*Before you return to work you should contact HR who will arrange a “return to work” telephone interview for you and your Manager. You should not return to work before this time. 

 IMPORTANT HR CONTACT DETAILS

Cara Dent | HR Administrator (Elgin) | cara.dent@springfield.co.uk | 07880 341 184

Sarah Cantlay | HR Administrator (Elgin) | sarah.cantlay@springfield.co.uk | 07921 224 43             

Diane Kemp | Senior HR Advisor (Elgin) | diane@springfield.co.uk | 07495 178 262

Yvonne Harper | HR Administrator (Larbert) | yvonne.harper@springfield.co.uk | 07384 825 716

Marc Dickson | HR Administrator (Larbert) | marc.dickson@springfield.co.uk | 07712 573 628

Jaide Johnston | Senior HR Advisor (Larbert) | jaide.johnston@springfield.co.uk | 07794 050 194

07.08.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 36

Dear All,

I have mentioned previously the need for us all to remain vigilant to play our part in keeping rates of coronavirus infection down.  

Following a spike in cases in Aberdeen this week, the First Minister has put the city back into lock-down.  The cluster of positive cases is believed to have stemmed from one pub.  Now all residents in the Aberdeen City local authority area once again face restrictions until the rate of infection is brought back under control.

The health & safety of our staff, customers, subbies and suppliers must remain our priority and that is why we continue to operate under a restrictive environment, guided closely by government policy. 

For those on furlough, whilst I am sure it must be frustrating, I hope the situation in Aberdeen helps you to understand why we cannot accelerate too fast.  For those back working, I deeply encourage you to not be complacent about the risks we continue to face.  Please refresh yourself with the measures we have put in place to protect the health of you and others and contact your manager or HR if in any doubt.

Take care 

Innes

31.07.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 35

Dear All, 

Nicola Sturgeon announced yesterday that whilst progress is being made, Scotland’s efforts against this Pandemic have not yet gone far enough to allow a move into the next Phase.  

According to the new Route Map published, our offices will need to remain closed, with us continuing to be home based until at least 11 September.  On a brighter note, I am sure the confirmation on the schools returning full time in August will be welcomed by a number of you.

There’s no doubt that the pandemic forced us into a very difficult period and we continue to review how we work as we come out the other side.  As a business, we have adapted tremendously well to the new virtual world we find ourselves in.  In fact yesterday, we hosted our first online site launch at Gartcosh using a new ‘hold’ facility for customers to secure plots on our website.  Today, I am pleased to announce some new internal appointments which have been made to drive our business forward in this post-covid environment.

Heading up consolidated functions in Central Private:

·         Regional Sales Director – Liz Cleghorn (from Dawn Homes)

·         Regional Commercial Director – Paul McKay (from Walker Group)

·         Regional Land Director – Campbell Whyte (from Dawn Homes)

 In addition, in Central Partnerships Kevin Rooney’s role will now be Partnerships Operations Director.

While I congratulate these four individuals, I wish to thank everyone else for their patience and understanding at what continues to be a challenging time. 

Take care and keep in touch

Innes

24.07.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 34

Dear All,

There has now been a week without any Covid-19 deaths in Scotland.  This is a really positive sign that the action taken in Scotland to reduce the rate of infection is working.

Slowly but surely we have been returning to work to enable us to deliver a quality service for our customers.  

After several months of closure, we have reopened to three weeks of strong reservations, which is encouraging. We do however need to be realistic about challenges that could still come our way, as organisations across Scotland take stock of the impact that the pandemic has had.  It is crucial that we are well-positioned to succeed in this post-covid environment.

Again, I thank everyone for their patience and understanding as time progresses.  In return we will be patient and understanding if there is anything that we can help you with.

Take care and keep in touch

Innes

17.07.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 33

Dear All,

March 23rd was the date that lockdown began and everything we had planned ahead had to be reviewed.  Our sites, factory and offices were immediately closed and we had to Furlough the majority of our staff.

16 weeks on from that date and we are still trying to plan ahead with the best information we can obtain.  The last two weeks have seen strong sales and it is encouraging to see continued customer confidence.  We have obviously lost three months of business and we are still some way away from operating at full capacity.

This week saw the announcement that we are moving to phase 4 of the construction restart plan.  This will have a number of impacts on site and our Site Managers and Health and Safety teams will keep you up to date on these.  It’s important that you understand what measures are in place to protect the health of you and others.

We are also pleased to announce that we are now able to recommence our After Sales Service.  The operation of this service will be led by the Scottish Government guidance in place to ensure best practice and to keep our staff and customers safe.  We will soon be contacting customers, updating the website and encouraging them to make us aware of any issues.  This will then give us the opportunity to program works going forward.  We thank our customers for their patience as we work our way through the requests we were unable to attend to during lockdown.  The Springfield Group has always prided itself on having a strong, dedicated After Sales team and we look forward to resolving any problems that customers have, to enable them to live happily in a house they love.

Looking forward we will continue to bring people out of Furlough and, as always, I thank you for your patience.  The pandemic has forced us into a very difficult period and it remains crucial that we continue to review how we work, to ensure that we are in the best possible position to build on our Group’s success long into the future.  

Please do not hesitate to contact us if there are any issues you would like to discuss or if there is anything we can help you with.

Take Care

Innes

10.07.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 32

Dear All

I hope you and your family are well.

Our first week of sales last week gave us a record number of reservations.  This was great to see because it demonstrates the high levels of pent up demand and helps fill me with optimism for what lies ahead.   

Additionally the Scottish Government has announced an increase of the threshold for Stamp Duty (LBTT) to £250k and a further £50m for the First Home Fund.  This positive news should assist our customers and give them confidence that now is a good time to buy. 

We will be asking more people back from Furlough this week.  I welcome back those returning and send my thanks again to those who continue to wait patiently as we increase our activity.

As infections continue to reduce, we are seeing more and more things open up. Please remember that the virus is still out there and we have a responsibility to follow advice and be safe.

Take Care

Innes

08.07.2020 - COVID-19 Trading Update

Dear All

Following a record breaking week of reservations with the reopening of our sales offices on 29 June, I am pleased to share with you a Trading Update that was issued to the market earlier today.

We trust that this release will be picked up by local press to help reinforce the message about pent up demand and give home buyers that extra boost to snap up a new Springfield home.

Click here to read the Trading Update.

Take Care 

Innes

03.07.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 31

Dear All,

I hope you and your families are all well. 

This week we saw the lifting of restrictions that enabled us to welcome eager home buyers back into our show homes and further increase activity on our sites.  This allows us to get our patient customers into their new homes and also to meet the high, pent-up demand from home buyers to secure sales for the future.

These positive moves mean that we can continue to take more employees out of Furlough.  

We have to be realistic though, we are still operating under a restrictive environment and it is not, and should not, be business as usual.  We only need to look at Leicester to see what could happen if we don’t keep on top of this.  I understand that there are a lot of uncertainties and I want to reassure you that we will do all we can to ensure we act in the best interests of the company, its staff, customers, subbies and suppliers.  

As usual we will be in touch when we need you to come out of Furlough or if there is anything that affects how we operate.  We are expecting an update on the “return to construction phase plan” next Friday and this may change our working practices to less than 2m.  

If anyone has any questions or concerns, please contact your Manager or Human Resources and we will do all we can to help.

Until then we look forward to delivering a strong week of sales and please stay safe out there.

Take Care

Innes

01.07.2020 - Test and Protect Reminder

Hi All,

I hope you and your families are all well.

Further to our update last month, we are keen to remind everyone about the Scottish Government Test and Protect strategy to limit the community spread of COVID-19 going forward.

Our guidance sheet for employees is detailed again below.

To reiterate, in any of these circumstances your Manager will discuss with you your ability to work from home, otherwise self-isolation continues to be treated as sickness absence.

Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact HR (contact details below).

Many thanks and take care.

Heather

 


Coronavirus (COVID-19): Self-isolation guidance for Employees

The main symptoms of coronavirus are a new continuous cough, fever or loss of, or change in, sense of smell or taste.

What should I do if I become unwell with Coronavirus symptoms at work?

Notify your Manager that you feel unwell and leave work to self-isolate straight away. Wear a face covering on route (available from your Site Manager or the H&S dept.) and avoid public transport. 
Visit www.nhsinform.scot to arrange to get tested. If you can’t get online, call 0800 028 2816
Until you have been tested and told if it safe to leave home, you should not come to work.

What happens if I test positive for Coronavirus?

Please contact a member of HR to discuss your result.
You need to continue to self-isolate for 7 days from the time your symptoms started.
NHS contact tracers will interview you and get in touch with people you have been in close contact with, and tell them they must self-isolate for 14 days.
If you feel well enough after 7 days, and have not had a high temperature for 48 hours (without taking any medicines to treat a high temperature) you can return to work*. 

What if the test is negative?

Please contact HR to discuss your return to work*.

I have been informed by an NHS contact tracer that I have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive. What should I do?

If you are contacted at work please notify your Manager and leave work to self-isolate straight away for 14 days.
You may be asked to work from home if you are able to and are not unwell.
If you develop symptoms within the 14 days, you must stay at home for 7 days from the day your symptoms began. You should do this even if it takes you over the 14-day isolation period.
Towards the end of the 14 day period (or extended period due to developing symptoms), please contact HR to discuss your return to work*.

I live with someone who has symptoms or who has tested positive.

Please follow advice above for those who have been told by the NHS they have been in close contact with someone who has coronavirus and self-isolate immediately.
If the person with symptoms tests negative, everyone in your household can end isolation and you can return to work.*

In all circumstances, please request a Self-Isolation note from NHS inform and email HR through a copy as soon as possible.

*Before you return to work you should contact HR who will arrange a “return to work” telephone interview for you and your Manager. You should not return to work before this time. 

IMPORTANT HR CONTACT DETAILS 
Cara Dent | HR Administrator (Elgin) 
cara.dent@springfield.co.uk |  07880 341 184
Diane Kemp | Senior HR Advisor (Elgin) 
diane@springfield.co.uk |  07495 178 262
Yvonne Harper | HR Administrator (Larbert)
yvonne.harper@springfield.co.uk | 07384 825 716
Jaide Johnston | Senior HR Advisor (Larbert) 
jaide.johnston@springfield.co.uk | 07794 050 194

26.06.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 30

Dear All,

I hope everyone is taking care and staying safe.  With the latest report stating that there were only 5 new confirmed cases of Covid-19 across Scotland yesterday, you would now have to be very unlucky to catch it.  However, we can’t be complacent and need to focus on making sure that we continue to follow the guidance.  The last thing we want is people to get sick on our sites or for our sites to be closed down.  Above all keep washing your hands and keep your distance from folks, if you have any doubts ask a manager.

On Monday the sales offices are open for business again and we already have a high number of customers booked in, let’s all hope that we get the positive sales that England did.  Construction continues to ramp up and it’s important that we deliver quality homes quickly to our patient customers.  

We will continue to bring people out of Furlough as we get through this.  For those of you still on Furlough I thank you for your patience and understand how frustrated you will be.  

Whilst I will have less to say on these weekly updates I still intend to continue with them as long as people are on Furlough.  You deserve to know what is happening with your business and I will keep you, sub-contractors, suppliers and customers informed.

Have a good weekend.

Innes

24.06.2020 - Working From Home

Dear All,

As offices remain closed, those affected continue working from home where you possibly can.

According to new Government guidance Springfield Group can now pay those working from home £26 a month tax free to assist with expenses directly relating to working at home.

This can be claimed for the months of April, May and June and will continue to be payable whilst the Scottish Government COVID-19 guidance is for offices to remain closed and work from home where possible.

If you work full time (amount should be calculated pro rata for part time employees or if you work a blend of office and home), you can claim this amount through an expenses form and please ensure your manager approves this before submitting to payroll@springfield.co.uk by the 10th of each month for the previous month.

We hope this helps and take care.

Heather

 

19.06.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 29

Dear All

Another week passes and again the infection rates have moved in the right direction.  This has enabled the Scottish Government to move to the next phase.  This means that from 29th June we will be able to sell homes from our sales areas.  Our Show Homes will be open again, with new safety measures in place as well as our fluffed up cushions – everywhere we look. 

We have been back on sites for three weeks now, with the first couple of weeks being used to make the sites safe, and we are now tentatively starting construction again. The activities will increase week by week and as they do more staff will return to work from furlough. Please be patient with us, we can’t take everyone back at once.

We now need to focus on getting our patient customers into their new homes. There are some who have sold their existing house, who are currently without a home and are desperate to move in. Let’s help those people as quickly as we safely can.

This has been a long three months and we are almost getting to the finishing line.  We need to make sure when we return, we do this safely and remain vigilant about the virus. We want a permanent return to work and now that we will be able to sell homes again, we can give our customers the Springfield Group quality product once more!

Take care

Innes

 

17.06.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 28

Dear All

Sadly I have to announce that yesterday we had discussions with our Central Scaffolding team where we informed them that a number of jobs were at risk.

As we restart our business, our priority is the health and safety of our employees and the wider community.  Initially, we will be working at reduced capacity as we introduce new safe working practices to ensure social distancing. It’s imperative we continue to keep the spread of the virus down.  We need to focus on working safely and getting customers moved into the hundreds of homes which were already under construction before lockdown. Additionally future works have also been delayed by the impact of Covid 19.  Unfortunately, all this means we do not require the scaffolding resource we had in place prior to lockdown.

We still see a strong sales market and demand is higher than the restricted supply we can build in the short term.  Clearly we would want to fully satisfy this demand but of more importance is the compliance with the safety guidelines to keep everyone healthy.

During the scaffolders’ consultation period we will be exploring every means to avoid compulsory redundancies to minimise the number of employees affected.

I thank you for your support and understanding in these difficult times.

Take Care

Innes Smith

 

12.06.2020 - Test and Protect Update

Hi All,

I hope you and your families are all well.

The Scottish Government announced the Test and Protect strategy to limit the community spread of COVID-19 going forward.

As we start our steady return to work, we are keen that you are aware of the steps you should take in relation to this strategy to best protect yourself and others.

As such, we have produced a guidance sheet for employees below.

In any of these circumstances your Manager will discuss with you your ability to work from home, otherwise self-isolation continues to be treated as sickness absence.

Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact HR (contact details below).

Many thanks and take care.

Heather


Coronavirus (COVID-19): Self-isolation guidance for Employees

The main symptoms of coronavirus are a new continuous cough, fever or loss of, or change in, sense of smell or taste.

What should I do if I become unwell with Coronavirus symptoms at work?

Notify your Manager that you feel unwell and leave work to self-isolate straight away. Wear a face covering on route (available from your Site Manager or the H&S dept.) and avoid public transport. 
Visit www.nhsinform.scot to arrange to get tested. If you can’t get online, call 0800 028 2816.
Until you have been tested and told if it safe to leave home, you should not come to work.

What happens if I test positive for Coronavirus?

Please contact a member of HR to discuss your result.
You need to continue to self-isolate for 7 days from the time your symptoms started.
NHS contact tracers will interview you and get in touch with people you have been in close contact with, and tell them they must self-isolate for 14 days.
If you feel well enough after 7 days, and have not had a high temperature for 48 hours (without taking any medicines to treat a high temperature) you can return to work*. 

What if the test is negative?

Please contact HR to discuss your return to work*.

I have been informed by an NHS contact tracer that I have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive. What should I do?

If you are contacted at work please notify your Manager and leave work to self-isolate straight away for 14 days.
You may be asked to work from home if you are able to and are not unwell.
If you develop symptoms within the 14 days, you must stay at home for 7 days from the day your symptoms began. You should do this even if it takes you over the 14-day isolation period.
Towards the end of the 14 day period (or extended period due to developing symptoms), please contact HR to discuss your return to work*.

I live with someone who has symptoms or who has tested positive.

Please follow advice above for those who have been told by the NHS they have been in close contact with someone who has coronavirus and self-isolate immediately.
If the person with symptoms tests negative, everyone in your household can end isolation and you can return to work.*

In all circumstances, please request a Self-Isolation note from NHS inform and email HR through a copy as soon as possible.

*Before you return to work you should contact HR who will arrange a “return to work” telephone interview for you and your Manager. You should not return to work before this time. 

IMPORTANT HR CONTACT DETAILS
Cara Dent | HR Administrator (Elgin)
cara.dent@springfield.co.uk |  07880 341 184
Diane Kemp | Senior HR Advisor (Elgin)
diane@springfield.co.uk |  07495 178 262
Yvonne Harper | HR Administrator (Larbert)
yvonne.harper@springfield.co.uk | 07384 825 716
Jaide Johnston | Senior HR Advisor (Larbert)
jaide.johnston@springfield.co.uk | 07794 050 194

11.06.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 27

Hi All,

WE ARE BACK! 

Today Scottish Government announced that we are to enter phase 2 of the construction plan to return to work.  This means we are allowed a “soft” start to our sites and will have to run them at reduced capacity.  We are allowed to build houses again!  Our immediate focus will be on houses that have customers waiting for them and are largely complete.  It’s time we started handing over our great product to our customers who are ready to move in.

Over the last two weeks our Site Managers and H&S have been working to ensure our sites are as safe as they can be.  Over the next couple of days, we will be in touch to ask some of you back.  If you are not one of these people please be patient, it’s important we get this return right and don’t endanger anyone.

This is clearly great news after all we have been through and we are only able to do this as we all have been successful in driving the infection rates down.

Some office staff will be asked back, although the offices are not allowed to be “open” until August.  Work from home will be required.  Show homes are not allowed to open yet but we are hopeful this will happen soon.  We are expecting a lot of calls from customers on the back of today’s announcement so we will be bringing more sales support out of furlough.

After sales is still a no-go area unless it is an emergency, so we need to manage our customers’ expectations for now, although I do expect this to change soon.  

It’s not possible in an email to go through every aspect of starting up again. In short, right now we are focusing on getting the sites and factory up and running.  If you don’t hear from us this week, please wait and we will contact you soon.

I know our suppliers and subbies read this as well so again I thank you too for your patience and look forward to working with you again.

It’s been a long fight to get here and there are still many issues to overcome.  There are also many unknowns so it’s important we adhere to all the new rules.  Keep your distance and wash your hands, remember this and remind anyone that forgets.

Welcome back, time to deliver Springfield Group houses again.

Take care,

Innes

05.06.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 26

Hi All,

Good news from the sites and factory.  We are well on the way to making all the necessary changes to ensure you can operate in as safe an environment as possible.

Fingers crossed we get information from Scottish Government giving us some form of go ahead in the next week.

Meantime I wish you and your families well, it won’t be long before we are back to some form of normality!

Take care

Innes

28.05.2020 - COVID-19 Action Plan Update 25

Dear All,

Hope you are keeping well and get the chance to responsibly enjoy the new freedoms that are being given back to you.

Today we are starting the road back to recovery.  Site managers and others are having (virtual) meetings with MDs and H&S to plan what we are going to do next week to make our sites safe.

I have complete faith in our staff to operate safely and trust them to get our sites and work areas set up accordingly.  We still await the go ahead from Scot Govt for actual housebuilding and then following that an opening of sales and finally some return to office work.  We will be in touch when we can get you back.  Thank you for your patience.

Infection rates are down and everything is trending in the right direction for me to believe that we are seeing the start of a slow and steady return.  I have been made aware that our customers, suppliers and subbies read this, so my message to everyone who reads this, is that we miss you and want to get back to working with you as soon as it is safe to do so.

In the meantime enjoy the sun.

Take Care

Innes

27.05.2020 - Allocation of Holidays

Dear All,

I hope you and your families are all keeping well.

We clarified some time ago that you could use holidays during this furlough period and that this would boost your pay because holidays taken during furlough are paid at 100% of you salary.  We continue to encourage you to do this.  

As a company, we need to be able to manage holiday entitlement effectively when we get back to work so that as many of us as possible can have future holiday requests approved whilst still being able to meet our programme requirements. To help us achieve this for 2020 we need to avoid a buildup of unused holiday which would need to be taken once we are back at work. For this reason, all of the remaining core team have been using holidays over the last few weeks.

For those that remain on furlough, we now think that it is fair to ask employees to have used at least 1 week of holiday (excluding public holidays) before the end of June. You can request particular dates for holiday in June by contacting HR. If you wish to do so, please contact Diane, Jaide or Yvonne by no later than Friday 5th June.

If we have not heard from you by this date, we are now giving you notice that we will process holidays for you which commence on 22nd June 2020 to ensure you have used at least 1 week of holiday by the end of June.To reiterate, you will receive 100% of your salary for holidays taken during furlough.

For example:

  • If you are full time and have yet to use any of your holidays (excluding public holidays), we will process 5 days holidays for you from 22nd June to 26th June.
  • If you have already had 3 days holidays this year, we will process 2 days holidays for you from 22nd June to 23rdJune.

Part time employees should use their part time equivalent to 1 week i.e. 3 days holidays if you work a 3 day week.

New starts that have not yet accrued 1 week of holiday will be dealt with on an individual basis.  

Finally, requests for more than 1 week of holiday during furlough will also be considered. 

Thank you for your cooperation and stay safe.

Heather