February 2021

I’d like to start by taking a little look back at 2020 and celebrating some of the fantastic things that took place across our business.

It’s well known that some of the hardest hit organisations throughout the Covid-19 pandemic are charities, due to the many fundraising events and volunteering opportunities that had to be cancelled. #TeamPelican recognises the importance that charities play in our wider community, and I was extremely proud to see a continued focus on fundraising throughout the year, even if this looked a little different than normal!

Here are a few of our managers raising money for Children in Need by cycling a combined total of 553 miles!

Our amazing team raised an impressive £3,000 for various charities throughout 2020, many being causes put forward and voted upon by our people. We enter 2021 with an equal passion for fundraising and I am excited to see how much we can raise for our first quarterly charity of the year, NHS Charities Together.

As much as I would like to avoid mentioning Covid-19 through this look back, it would be almost impossible not to. In March 2020, it was clear that our businesses needed to adapt (and quickly!) to ensure we did all we could to slow the spread of the virus and to protect our people.

Within weeks of the first lockdown being announced, we had moved a large proportion of our people to home working, including our Contact Centre team members who are the first point of contact for over 1.2m customers. As a business, we had never faced a challenge like this before however, I was impressed by the speed, professionalism and understanding displayed by our team as we prepared to make the move home.

A particularly proud moment of mine was the huge success of our incredible Business Support Services and IT teams who were able to source and prepare over 270 laptops, to ensure our team had everything they needed to serve our customers from home.

Our Health and Wellbeing Committee, Working Parents Network and Mental Health First Aiders, continued to navigate through the unknown, to support our people through this new way of working whilst just as importantly, having fun!

I thought I would share a word cloud produced during one of our virtual Working Parent Network gatherings, taking the time to celebrate our little ones as they adapt to home schooling. This network, ran by our people for our people, has been a guiding hand to parents throughout the pandemic, providing an opportunity to swap ideas and home-schooling challenges or just a virtual coffee and a catch up.

Our Health and Wellbeing team, working closely with our Mental Health First Aiders, continued to promote the importance of both mental and physical wellbeing, especially during a time of uncertainty and change. The activities may have looked a little different than usual, but I am very proud of these teams who continued to work incredibly hard to ensure our people were kept safe and well, as well as signposted to additional support should they need it.

As we approach the anniversary of the launch of the initial lockdown, we find ourselves in lockdown number three and our team continue to work together to ensure our customers receive the very best service, whether they are in the office, working from home or out on the roads across the region taking meter readings.

I am under no illusion that we still have challenges ahead as we travel throughout 2021, but I am also confident that as a team we will continue to adapt to whatever comes our way.