Preparing for recovery and survival in a post-Covid world

November 12, 2020 //By Lindsley Ruth
Preparing for recovery and survival in a post-Covid world
COVID-19 is changing the face of industry worldwide. Lindsley Ruth, CEO of Electrocomponents, offers some guidance on the challenges that face the industry and how they can be addressed.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Electrocomponents has taken swift and responsive action to support the needs of customers, suppliers and employees as well as providing assistance to communities. As a global, omni-channel business, our experience and presence in Asia meant that just as the virus was emerging in China, we were able to establish a crisis management team quickly. Then, as it spread worldwide, we rolled out business continuity plans rapidly and efficiently across the globe.

The cornerstone of our business ethos has always been to ensure we can respond swiftly to changing customer needs, although we did not have a pandemic in mind! When lockdowns restricted movement of all but essential people and goods, we were well-placed to adapt and evolve our service offerings. This was, in part, due to our early investment in eCommerce and digital platforms, now generating 63% online revenue, and partly through the nature of our business.

Customer support

One of our first priorities was to provide urgent support for our many customers in critical industry sectors, including medical and healthcare, food and beverage, utilities, logistics and the public sector, especially police and ambulance services. Thus, it was essential that we mobilised fast to ensure continuity of supply, and to meet new and urgent demands. Top of the list was to help make PPE products available to allow frontline workers to continue their work safely.

In the UK, we ring-fenced essential products to support the NHS and its contractors in the development and supply of vital medical equipment, such as ventilators and respirators, oximeters and temperature measurement systems, as well as for medical analysis and vaccine research laboratories.

With some factories shut down or with much reduced output, combined with significant international transportation limitations, some products were in short supply. But, with more than 500,000 products from 2,500 suppliers on offer, and with a global distribution network, our expert teams were able to

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