Working safely through COVID-19: Wax Lyrical | Cumbria LEP
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Working safely through COVID-19: Wax Lyrical

Wax Lyrical, Ulverston Wax Lyrical, Ulverston

2020 was envisioned to be a challenging and exciting year for Wax Lyrical but no one could have predicted just how challenging it would prove to be, not just for our business, but globally.  Whilst this unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic was creeping across the world, one of our team members suggested switching one of our production lines to manufacture hand sanitiser for the NHS as increased demand meant they were struggling to source it. What an opportunity for us to support our community and keep our business running in exceptionally difficult times!

Thanks to our community spirit and an amazing effort from all involved, we were not only able to source the equipment and materials required, we were also able to convert our production lines to manufacture a completely different product – in the space of 2 weeks! Our initial priority was to support our local NHS trust, the local care sector and pharmacies and this has now expanded to supporting a wide range of businesses across the UK. Through it all, we have maintained our business values - this has never been about profiteering for us. 

The changes we have made have involved different materials and processes in addition to the adjustments we’ve made due to the COVID-19 virus. Throughout it all, the safety of our team has remained our top priority. After assessing the risk, we put measures in place to keep our teams as safe as possible, enabled homeworking wherever we could and we are now getting used to using technology to keep in touch and keep the business operating as effectively as possible. 

We implemented social distancing at the earliest opportunity and our team members have been great at taking this seriously and reminding each other when they need to. We asked some of our team members from the factory for their opinion of the measures we’ve put in place and this is what they said:

  • Gary said that he “liked that we supplied employees with hand sanitiser for use at home and in work as well as keeping employees 2 metres away from each other by putting tape down on the factory floor”.
  • Pauline said she liked that “Wax Lyrical put posters up advising on the Corona Virus, provided a COVID-19 FAQ’s sheet and consulted all employees.”  She also said “I came up with an idea on improving the cleaning that they introduced”.
  • Steve, a member of the Health and Safety Committee from the factory said, “Wax Lyrical has provided us all the right PPE we need.”
  • Jane said “We are happy to make hand sanitiser for the NHS”.

A huge part of the success of this project has been working with our team members to make sure we continue to support them to feel safe at work. We have listened to concerns, taken action wherever appropriate, provided relevant information and equipment and, we hope, have demonstrated that we care for our team members and our community as well as ensured the retention of jobs for our people in the long term.

Wax Lyrical has been extremely fortunate to be able to work with a broad spectrum of specialist suppliers, consultants and local organisations who pulled out all stops to enable us to make this change happen. It’s quite a long list and for fear of missing anyone out and offending someone, can we just say a huge thank you to each and every person and company involved; we are so proud to be part of such an amazing community.

We have recently transformed our business to manufacture sanitiser products to support the NHS and other health services. Whilst our business remains open we have taken the following steps to ensure the health and safety of our teams and our customer.

  • We’ve introduced floor markings in production, fulfilment and office spaces to facilitate the recommended social distancing.
  • We have identified key touch points which require extra cleaning such as: door handles and keypads.
  • We have staggered shift start, end and break times for all team members.
  • We are providing wipes and hand sanitiser to all our team members on site.
  • We have limited non-essential movement between sites or areas.
  • Between shift patterns on production we’re cleaning workstations to reduce cross-contamination.

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