In figures released by the Humber LEP, just over 2,000 businesses contacted its local business advisers last week alone.
The LEP’s Humber Business Growth Hub has 18 full-time advisers based within local authorities across the East Riding, Hull, North Lincolnshire, and at e-Factor Group in North East Lincolnshire. Business advisers specialising in finance, ICT, supply chain and general business support have all been providing information, advice and guidance to businesses over the telephone, email and (where possible) video calls.
The figures underline a real and urgent need for businesses to obtain the support they need in order to navigate this unprecedented and extremely challenging situation.
In addition to advice, the Humber Business Growth Hub is offering grants for SMEs affected by coronavirus as illustrated below:
ICT grants: support the purchase of ICT equipment and software to enable staff home working.
Business Growth Grants: support the costs of working with a consultant or specialist on Covid-19 response, for example HR consultants on managing workforces, supply chain consultants on managing suppliers and supply chain, or contingency planning specialists on creating and implementing contingency plans.
Access to Finance Grants: supports the cost of working with an accountant or financial advisor to manage business finances, cash flow, and prepare applications for grant and loan schemes.
Businesses are also finding help via the Growth Hub’s dedicated coronavirus business support webpage, which has details of all the support available from the Government and other organisations. More than 3,000 businesses visited the site over the past week.
The region’s economic response is being co-ordinated through the Humber Economic Resilience Group, which continues to convene weekly – discussing the most pressing issues for the business community here in the Humber, working on solutions to lessen the economic impact on the Humber as far as possible and gathering the latest business intelligence to feed back to the Government.
Businesses who are in need of support are being urged to visit the Humber Growth Hub’s coronavirus website here: www.humbergrowthhub.org/covid-19/ or email [email protected] with any inquiries or with request for support to help deal with the impact of Covid-19.
The Growth Hub’s manager Jon Brunton said: “We’re really pleased to have already engaged with and supported over 2,000 businesses in the Humber, both through our business adviser team and through our dedicated web pages.
“We want all businesses across the Humber to know about the support that is available to them throughout this undoubtedly difficult time and urge them to get in touch with the Growth Hub.
“We can help provide grants for homeworking and specialist advisory services, we have many web resources available, and we are currently finalising several webinars which will cover a variety of topics to helps businesses through this unprecedented period. Even if we can’t support you with your specific issue, we can still help signpost you to further support.”