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Drowned but not out!

Powerminster Gleeson Services, the Sheffield-based building services and facilities management firm, was able to operate a business-as-usual service for clients within hours of last week’s floods, thanks to a robust business continuity plan and some quick thinking by its management.
Drowned but not out!
The ground floor of the company's headquarters at Don Road in the Brightside Lane area of Sheffield was flooded on Monday June 25, with all power, phone and internet connections to the building completely wiped out.

Staff took refuge on the first floor until the floodwaters subsided, with only vending machine snacks and drinks to keep them going.

They were, however, able to power one light and a small TV with a temporary generator that a colleague had fortunately just brought back from site.

Many of those stranded were able to leave the building at 4am when the flood waters subsided but for those whose route home involved going through flooded areas, the best option was to stay in the building overnight.

Powerminster Gleeson Services management team had moved all staff and computer equipment upstairs when it became obvious the flood waters were rising and the team used the time they spent stranded to plan the company's next steps.

By Tuesday morning, all clients had been informed, the company's field operatives had swapped their hand-held computers for a manual system and the company's main telephone line had been re-directed to its Bradford office.

By Wednesday morning power had been restored thanks to an emergency generator and by Friday the mains power was up and running again.

Martyn Horton, managing director of Powerminster Gleeson Services, commented, 'Floods on this scale is not something we had envisaged. However, we have a robust business continuity plan in the event of our head office building being put out of action. I am pleased with the way in which the team pulled together to ensure minimum disruption to our clients. Like so many others, we must now begin the clean-up operation and our teams are also helping some of our neighbours to address the challenges of the damage caused.'
5 July 2007

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