Despite the COVID-19 challenges to business, well over 90 per cent of UK electrical wholesalers are continuing to trade, with only a handful taking the decision to temporarily close completely, according to the Electrical Distributors’ Association (EDA) following a recent survey.
The EDA recently polled all 245 wholesaler members on their opening status, the results of which are published in the Associations’ newly created online COVID-19 Hub, which also provides a range of information, resources, and downloads for members and affiliated members.
Even with the obvious alterations needed to accommodate social distancing, most member businesses are fully operational from all branches. Swift to react to necessary constraints of COVID-19 changes, many businesses have established “keep your distance” collection services to ensure their contractor customers are supplied with essential products – many of whom are responding to critical infrastructure and emergency projects.
Margaret Fitzsimons, CEO at the EDA commented “Electrical wholesalers are an essential link in the supply chain, keeping contractors supplied with the products they need to keep the UK’s critical infrastructure safe and operational. There have been many inspirational stories of huge efforts by our members to get resources to where they are needed most, and we’ve shared as many of these as we can on our social media channels”.
“Swift to respond, our members have adapted their business operations to ensure safe working practices for their employees, customers and suppliers. In the medium to longer term, there is no doubt that both manufacturers and wholesalers will want to explore their e-commerce and data harnessing capabilities. As social distancing looks set to be with us for some time, wholesalers will be looking for how best to integrate online efficiencies with the trade counter expertise that we know is so important to contractors.”
Also planned for the EDA’s COVID-19 Hub is information on the operating status of the 80+ manufacturer affiliated members.
Margaret promoted the EDA’s COVID-19 Hub in a webinar run by the electrical contractors’ association, the ECA, earlier this week. The webinar can be viewed on YouTube here