With expertise in design, printing, packaging and manufacturing, vendors and suppliers throughout the office products industry have been doing their bit to help the NHS and frontline workers during lockdown. Contributions range from the donation of equipment to the manufacture of much needed PPE equipment. Here is a small but representative sample of recent initiatives.
*DisplayMode, a provider of retail and point of sale displays, started making face shields for frontline workers on a not-for-profit basis to avoid having to furlough staff. It started out producing 10,000 masks a week, and within two weeks had increased production to 100,000 and cut the cost per unit from £5 to £2.
*Binding specialist Renz responded to a 75% collapse in orders in a similar fashion, using its expertise and spare manufacturing capacity to produce a lightweight Protective Face Shield now certified by ECS GmbH, the European Certification Service.
*Graphic display specialist Leach has partially offset a dip in orders from its museum, exhibition and leisure sector customers by launching a range of social distancing window, floor and wall graphics. Hundreds of stock visuals can be bought through a dedicated virtual shop at https://weareleachsocialdistancing.com/.
*Print service provider Carly Press has been using spare capacity on its presses to print free ‘self isolation’ stickers for local residents to display outside their homes.
*Y Soft Corporation has been using its be3D eDee 3D printers to produce 500 protective face shields per day, which it is donating to a number of hospitals, including three in the UK – University Hospital Bristol, Devon Partnership NHS Trust and UHCW NHS Trust.
*When Yorkshire technology firm Vapour learnt that its Head of Cloud, Craig Holmes, was using money from a cancelled cruise to 3D print face guards for key workers, it stepped in and offered to pay all material and distribution costs.
*Antalis Packaging responded to a call from ‘Help NHS Heroes’ by supplying 1,000 boxes, tape and tape dispensers to a pop-up tent at the Lister Hospital in Stevenage. The boxes are being used to provide food and essential supplies to key workers who are unable to get to the shops.
*Premier Paper supplied South Wales printer Lexon with enough 470mic gloss clear Viprint to produce 10,000 protective visors that the printer is donating to NHS workers. It also teamed up with Semaphore Display to say a big thank you to the NHS through a graphic installation at the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff made from Rijet 100 vinyl.
*Welltek has donated a Neurosonic wave mattress and neuron activation pod (N.A.P.) to the staff wellness centre at Whipps Cross Hospital in North London. Together, they deliver a 10-minute programme of sensory tissue stimulation that is claimed to improve sleep quality, reduce migraine problems and relieve stress.
*Mobile and IoT management solutions provider SOTI has become a corporate partner of the Lifelines4LovedOnes initiative set up by authorised Samsung repair and service partner TMT First. Lifelines4LovedOnes refurbishes used tablets and smartphones and donates them to NHS hospitals and care homes so that COVID-19 patients can make video calls to friends and family. Free licences for SOTI’s enterprise mobility management software will enable devices to be secured and managed remotely.