How Bentley plans to ‘come back stronger’ after the coronavirus lockdown
British luxury carmaker Bentley Motors will introduce a set of around 250 new hygiene and social distancing measures under an employee programme called ‘Come Back Stronger’ in order to implement a safe, phased return to production at the company’s headquarters in Crewe, England, from May 11. Bentley expects to restart full production from May 18.
The plan marks the biggest change to daily working life in the company’s 100 year history.
The measures are built around seven key areas – prior to leaving home, travel, entry, preparing for work, work stations, breaks, and exiting the site – and are designed to protect staff at the factory, which employs over 4,000 people and where every Bentley is hand-built.
The key process changes impact all areas, and include a redesign of the manufacturing facility itself to allow a two-metre distance between work colleagues, and one-way movement paths and traffic flows. Face masks will now be compulsory in all factory and office areas, while Bentley will maintain a work from home policy for those who are able to.
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Personal protection equipment – including face masks, gloves, goggles - will be provided as necessary, both to employees and donated to the local care sector, as well as health temperature checks for staff. There will also be an enhanced cleaning routine and clear guidance to the workforce on limiting the risk of infection on areas such as meeting governance, site access and travel.
A return to work guide, which covers all new hygiene and social distancing measures, has been shared with all Bentley employees.
Adrian Hallmark, Chairman and CEO, Bentley Motors, said: “Throughout this unprecedented crisis, the health and safety of our colleagues has, and will continue to be, paramount. These extensive new working measures will allow both our people and Bentley to come back stronger than ever and even more focussed.
“The time is now right for Bentley to begin a gradual and controlled return to production, while ensuring our sites are the safest place any of us can be. Everybody will be able to play their part to ensure we can continue Bentley’s extraordinary journey into the future of luxury, sustainable mobility."
The company is using its specialist skills to 3D print over 30,000 face-shields and supply them to the Cheshire care sector, including all care homes, the NHS and other local community services.
Simultaneously, Bentley is donating personal protective equipment such as gloves, face masks, safety glasses and seat covers. The company also extended its Bentley ‘Meals on 22 inch Wheels’ service, where its employees volunteer to deliver essential items.