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University business experts offer SMEs crisis recovery support

Prof Simon Bolton Edgehill May 2020 BANNER

Business experts from Edge Hill University are now offering exclusive digital-based crisis recovery sessions to the region’s SMEs.

A team from the University’s Productivity and Innovation Centre (PIC) have rapidly developed a digitally-based solution to help small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) stabilise, refocus and embed plans to alleviate the devastating effect the Covid-19 pandemic has.

The PIC team, led by Professor Simon Bolton, is committed to supporting SMEs and have identified a genuine need to provide businesses with ready to use tools to help them navigate their immediate challenges and refocus their medium term strategies at a time when many business leaders are deeply uncertain about the future. Professor Bolton said: “It is important that we continue to support SMEs during this challenging period.

“The crisis recovery sessions demonstrate our highly successful dynamic recovery framework and provide business leaders with an agile tool to enable them to plan and prioritise solutions to their key challenges. We provide one-to-one feedback to help them address their challenges and become responsive to their environment to re-establish their productivity levels and ability to grow.”

The free online sessions draw on the experts’ extensive knowledge and experience in developing the data-driven innovation practices of SMEs; they have supported 98 local SMEs in the past two years through delivering the highly regarded Innovation Sprint Programme demonstrating impressive results in increased turnover, sales retention, new technology, improved processes and productivity. Businesses were invited to sign up to the sessions during a recent PIC-led webinar which introduced the new dynamic recovery framework and confirmed that SMEs need this level of support to develop their solutions and recovery strategy. 

The main concerns of SMEs include understanding changing customer priorities and how to adapt their business model in response to the changes; the sessions aim to help them to focus on retaining and gaining new customers, improve business performance, utilise resources and explore new technology. SMEs from a variety of sectors including healthcare, law, engineering and creative & digital have taken part in the sessions so far and have welcomed the support.

Andrew Nuttall from Adlington Law attended the first of the online sessions. “The Crisis Recovery Session provided us with a great framework which we can look into further and adopt for our business. We also gained a valuable insight into how other firms have reacted and implemented strategies for their own businesses, not only engaging with their existing clients but also focusing on potential new business avenue streams by diversifying their own business through technology in their own market.”

This support is a great addition to other Initiatives and government schemes available to SMEs to assist them through the restrictions enforced upon them due to the pandemic. The next sessions will take place on Thursday 28 May and 11 June, from 11.30am-12.30pm and 1.00pm-2.00pm.

Lancashire-based SMEs can get in touch through Edge Hill University's website to find out more and to book their place  or email Steve McArdle, Business Development Coordinator, at pic@edgehill.ac.uk          


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