How businesses are responding to Covid-19

Member stories - Covid-19

We are sharing stories about our members’ initiatives in these challenging times. Send your stories to sbccomms@businessnz.org.nz

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Level 3 updates

BusinessNZ resources for businesses operating at Level 3.

The Ākina Foundation looks at what Alert Level 3 means for social enterprises

The Warehouse Group and Countdown are trialling drive-thru shopping.

Looking ahead to the recovery

Joanna Silver, Head of Sustainable Finance at Westpac, examines the role that social bonds could play in the recovery.

Ravensdown talks about the prize now in sight - emerging stronger than ever.

Associate Professor Grant Duncan at Massey University writes about how New Zealand's coronavirus elimination strategy has united a nation. Can that unity outlast lockdown?

Aurecon's Just Imagine series looks at The sobering lessons for climate change that Covid-19 teaches us – but is anyone listening? An earlier piece looks at When the world comes to a grinding halt, what do you do next?

Professor Ilan Noy of Victoria University of Wellington: Financial package a golden opportunity for long-term change

Auckland Council has formed a Mayoral Business Advisory Panel (COVID) to help work through the issues created by the COVID-19 lockdown and to assist the city’s transition back to normal economic activity when the lockdown is lifted.

To help NZ businesses get back on their feet, we can Buy New Zealand Made.

In early March, Stuff ran a campaign to encourage New Zealanders to support local communities by holidaying in their own backyards. A good thought once things are back to normal!

And Stuff has now launched the Forever Project, looking at how we can make a difference on climate change.

Auckland Council and Flick Electric talked to Stuff about how we can reduce our personal carbon footprint during lockdown.

New ways of working

Tech Future Lab talked to TVNZ about how people can retrain for new careers in tech.

Jason Paris, CEO of Vodafone, talked to Rod Oram about how Vodafone is moving to a digital future.

AECOM has launched a virtual public consultation tool. and looks at how coronavirus may change the future of work.

Malcolm Foo and Alexander Richter of Victoria University look at the opportunities in a digital future.

Paul Conway at BNZ writes about the importance of digital skills for productivity in the recovery.

How members are helping New Zealand

Auckland Council staff are helping Auckland City Mission make meals for homeless people.

Auckland Transport has set up 17 kilometres of temporary cycleways to enable more people to exercise safely under level 3.

Countdown will support small businesses by paying them faster and also by offering rent relief to their tenants. And it has offered instant employment to Flight Centre staff who have been made redundant.

Fonterra staff started producing hand sanitiser from their gin distillery, and sewing DIY face masks.

Meridian Energy has donated $1 million to KidsCan, matching the $1 million donated by generous New Zealanders during the 19 for 19 appeal.

Moana NZ is helping the Palmerston North community by creating thousands of ready-to-eat meals for those in need.

Suncorp New Zealand is helping children affected by domestic violence stay connected with their schools and online learning through a one-off $100,000 donation to the domestic violence charity, Shine.

Unilever is helping to protect lives and livelihoods.

Vodafone is providing families that don't have the internet at Otahuhu College access to it so kids can learn. And has helped Auckland Council to keep running in a time of extremely high pressure.

Westpac New Zealand is donating an extra $1 million to support New Zealand's rescue helicopters, due to a drop in donations during Covid-19.

WSP supported the Helen Clark Foundation to look into the impact COVID-19 is having on loneliness in New Zealand and what politicians can do about it.

Z Energy has given St John Ambulance a month of free fuel and is supporting the Student Volunteer Army through its Sharetank app. And it has partnered with EROAD to give freight drivers a free coffee.

How members can help eachother

Catapult has the Covid-19 Leadership Playbook for practical and evidence-based guidance for responding to the leadership challenges of Covid-19 and beyond, and a Discussion Guide for Virtual Meetings.

Porter Novelli has some principles for communicating through uncertain times.

Wright Communications supports the In Case Of Crisis App for internal communications.

Chapman Tripp has published a series providing guidance across many different aspects of business.

Deloitte has guidance for NZ businesses on business entitlements and tax initiatives, and is supporting Pasifika Organisations and Leaders. The global network has a guide for senior executives on resilient leadership.

EY has a number of resources around resilience and uncertainty. A good place to start is Ten better questions to ask in a crisis.

KPMG has questions and answers around the Government economic response package, a guide to business resilience, and a guide for executives and directors on the potential impacts. KPMG also hosted a webinar discussing the economic and financial reporting implications of COVID-19, with special guest Donna Purdue, Chief Economist - MBIE.

Kantar has been surveying Kiwis weekly to track the response to COVID-19, and has advice for brands - starting with "look after your staff".

Staying connected

Fujitsu can help with remote working solutions.

Golder looks at Staying Closer While We’re Apart.

Vodafone has set up a daily checkin to make sure staff are doing ok. Guide to the best apps to stay connected.

Matt Gurr at Aurecon talks about data centres: the "invisible glue" holding our society together.

Business preparedness

Z Energy's digital and strategic partners Rush Digital and Roger Dennis have created Plan-C, a free business continuity planning tool for companies with fewer than 500 employees.

Ports of Auckland and Z Energy shared their best practice preparations with Newsroom. And Z Energy spoke to Rod Oram about their crisis management lessons.

Ākina looks at what the Covid-19 outbreak and the Government economic stimulus package means for enterprises seeking to have impact during the anticipated economic downturn, and have put together a list of useful resources.

Spark's virus planning began in January - Rod Oram.

Caring for your customers

Countdown is encouraging Kiwis to only buy what they need in the short-term and has established contactless deliveriesmore information.

Contact Energy, Flick Electric, Genesis, and Meridian are working with Transpower to ensure energy supply, and are all updating their customers on how they can help if they are struggling to pay their bills.

Spark and Vodafone will not disconnect customers or small businesses who fall behind on their bills during that period.

AMP, ASB, BNZ, and Westpac on how they will keep staff and customers safe and help with financial wellbeing. AA Insurance, Asteron Life and IAG also have good information for customers. Suncorp is supporting Vero and Asteron Life insurance customers and has made $4m worth of hardship funds available to customers.

If you're helping people in self-isolation by collecting their groceries, the safest way to transfer money is by internet banking, rather than cash or sharing debit cards. BNZ has a guide for setting up one-off payments.

Z Energy will take measures to keep you safe at service stations.

Caring for each other

Dr Dougal Sutherland at Victoria University of Wellington urges New Zealanders to keep up the kindness during the second half of the Level 4 lockdown.

Businesses showing their gratitude to their essential workers include Countdown, Fonterra and Toll. Sanford are giving away premium seafood to essential workers (delivered by their new electric van!).

Massey University researchers are looking into lockdown exercise routines. Dr Sarb Johal spoke to the Ministry of Health about mental wellbeing during lockdown, and wrote about getting your head around a four-week lockdown. Dr Kirsty Ross has parenting tips during lockdown.

Dr Courtney Addison at Victoria University of Wellington on how infectious diseases affect communities.

HRNZ Strategic Partner Cornerstone OnDemand are sharing their free training on:

  • Preventing infection and control
  • Promoting self-care and managing stress
  • Helping people be productive while working from home.

The global response

The World Business Council for Sustainable Development is collecting stories on how businesses are responding to Covid-19, including advice from KPMG on the business implications.

See also: SBC and Covid-19