How the Sustain and Grow Grant has helped us and could help you
We were delighted this year to qualify for a local government funded grant, to enable our business to recover, thrive and grow after the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. We thought it would be helpful to encourage other SMEs to seek the support of a similar nature, by telling a little of our journey this year.
Compassionate, but costly decisions
The last two years have been unprecedented for everyone, and every business has had to make tough decisions. During the height of the Pandemic in Spring of 2020, 70% of our clients didn’t require their office cleaning. Thankfully many of our clients are now back with us and we firstly thank them for their custom and loyalty.
During the time of the Pandemic, we sought to be proactive and offer varied support, such as information, deep cleaning, flexible cleaning options and of course keeping our staff safe by various health and safety measures, along with PPE. All of this impacted our business financially. During this time, we learnt through the local Worcestershire County Council of “Here 2 Help” business support grants.
Making the most of an opportunity
One of these grants was the Sustain and Grow Grant. We met the initial qualifying criteria and after a lengthy and detailed application process, including some sterling work from our management team in collating quotes and expenditure costs, our application was successful. The grant funded 50% towards the cost of our project.
During what was a very difficult time for the whole nation, we hoped that making the most of the opportunity that the Sustain and Grow Grant was providing would allow us to achieve a positive outcome for our staff out of a tragic national event.
What did our project include?
- To gain Safe Contractor Accreditation, enabling us to win business through larger tenders, entering new markets that only recognise this accreditation.
- To improve our website experience for users.
- To consolidate our brand.
- To raise the profile of our business and ultimately provide employment for more local people.
We are nearing the end of this project and would like to say thank you to all those companies that have helped us along the way. Our ethos was to use other local SME’s to ensure our local economy felt the benefits.
We want to thank Wendy and Emma, members of the project team at Worcestershire County Council. Who answered many questions at the commencement of the application and communicated throughout the process.
We want to acknowledge the ongoing help and support of Lucid Computer Solutions for sourcing hardware and helping with installing new IT.
Many thanks to the team at Twogether Digital who have worked tirelessly and seamlessly together to improve our brand, website and presence on Google.
Finally watch this space, as coming soon on our website, we will reveal a new promotional video produced by videographer Hope Drew Marketing Creative.
We have seen the benefits of much of this work throughout our business already.
1. Greater brand awareness
Work on our website, e-newsletter, telemarketing lead generation and digital content has increased our brand reach. Our brand awareness is greater, with more companies finding us online. We have built some great relationships throughout the business community.
2. Increased enquiry rate
There has been a big increase in our enquiry rate. The Search Engine Optimisation work and Google Ads campaign doubled our enquiry rate. We are starting to see an increase in markets targeted by Julia and her team.
3. Larger contracts
The enquiries we are getting are converting into larger contracts, because the companies finding us online are larger companies or because strong existing relationships are developing over time.
4. Improved flexibility
The new hardware and IT facilities have improved the processes in our office and allowed our team to work in a more flexible way.
There is still a long way to go before our country and our economy recovers fully from the ravages of the last couple of years. Healing from the emotional and mental strain people have felt will require much more time. Our hope for business owners is that they are able to use our experience to develop their own positive outcomes from this experience.
If you need a cleaning company that has Safe Contractor Status, please contact us for more information. We will be delighted to take your call.