NZSA Covid-19 Security Update – PSPLA Level 3 Emergency Directions

The Registrar has issued an Emergency Direction covering applications for new licences and certificates (CoA) under Level 3. If you would like a copy of the Emergency Direction please email nzsa@security.org.nz.

Please note that a copy of the Emergency Direction must still be carried by those staff who have been unable to uplift their official identification badge due to the closure of NZ Post Shops.

We also note that the PSPLA will, within the near future, begin trialing the delivery of licences and certificates directly to applicants via courier delivery. Dependent on feedback and delivery success rates, this may become a permanent mechanism for deliveries.

Stay safe and keep well.

From the NZSA team.

NZSA Covid-19 Security Update – Level 3 Security Licensing, EMA tips, Workers for Industry

Security Licensing under Level 3

The Government announced yesterday that we will move to Level 3 at midnight on Monday 27th April. Whilst there will be minimal change under Level 3 for security providers, given we are recognised as Essential Service providers, this will free up the ability for security technicians and others in similar positions to attend non-essential customer sites for installation, service and maintenance requirements (subject to the ability to safely access customer sites).

The Registrar has advised that the PSPLA will extend the Emergency Direction covering Security Licenses for the duration of the Level 3 period. We expect to receive a copy of the Emergency Direction within the next day or two and will distribute a copy to all members. The Registrar has also confirmed that some leniency will continue to be applied to those seeking an extension on Temporary Licenses pending a return to normal training capacity for CoA’s.

We do note that most security trainers have indicated they will resume CoA training from next week, albeit with restricted trainee numbers to meet physical distancing guidelines specified by ITENZ. We recommend contacting your training provider to confirm training availability.

 

EMA’s 6 tips for Business in preparation for moving to Level 3 and 2

Some sound advice from the Employers and Manufacturers Association (EMA):

  1. Prepare a health and safety plan for Level 3 and Level 2 (Government will be providing templates for business use later this week).
  1. Make contact with your key suppliers and customers. Check on their ability to meet your supply requirements and any likely cash flow difficulties in paying accounts on due date.
  1. Talk to your shareholders, bank or finance company; they are there to enable you.
  1. Re-imagine your services to meet the market, take advantage of government funding to become more digital.
  1. Reorganise, re-deploy and restructure with empathy; use your networks (including Associations) to connect people.
  1. Keep yourself and your people healthy, mentally and physically; rest when you can.

 

NZSA Skills for Industry Programme

We would like to remind our members that the NZSA Skills for Industry Programme has been expanded to include placing non-MSD candidates into employment. With the current financial uncertainty facing a significant number of businesses and many workers facing displacement and redundancy, we are receiving a high level of candidate interest in security positions from a broad range of industry sectors and skill bases.

If you have a need for staff, please contact Andrea on andrea@security.org.nz or 0274 502020 and let her know your requirements.

Stay safe and keep well.

From the NZSA team.

NZSA Covid-19 Security Update – Business Support and Resilience

New support for small to medium sized businesses

This week the Government has announced a set of new relief measures for small to medium sized enterprises (SME’s) during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The new measures include:
– greater flexibility for taxpayers in respect of statutory tax deadlines
– changes to the tax loss continuity rules
– a tax loss carry-back scheme
– measures to support commercial tenants and landlords
– further business consultancy support

The Government has already introduced a wide range of measures to assist businesses through the crisis. This includes the wage subsidy scheme, the Business Finance Guarantee scheme and a package of business tax changes. Whilst these measures apply to businesses beyond just SME’s, they provide substantial benefits to the SME sector.

More information can be found on the following websites:

The Beehive
IRD

 

Business consultancy support for NZSA members

The NZSA has formalised an agreement with leading financial advisors Smetric to provide Cash Flow Management and Business Support services to our members free of charge under the Government support package for business consultancy.

Smetric will provide funded advice that covers:
– Actions to stabilise cash flow during lock-down and in following months
– Scenario planning for the business post lock-down and developing strategies
– Review of customer base to ensure retention of as many customers as possible
– Review supply chain and resource continuity
– Review operational and capacity requirements post lock-down

This will enable the business to:
– Stabilise cash flow during and post lock-down
– Prioritise risks and quick wins
– Develop a 90 day plan to execute quickly and effectively

To qualify for the free support, members must meet a clear set of criteria (including less than 50 employees, were financially sound pre Covid-19, have been negatively impacted by the virus and anticipate being able to continue trading in a viable manner) and apply though the Covid-19 Business Support application process which is administered by the Regional Business Partnership Network. Smetric will guide you through this process.

For more information on Smetric and the services provided please refer to their website.

If you wish to take up this offer, please email Warwick at Smetric warwick@smetric.co.nz and request a proposal form.

 

Resilience strategies for coping with Covid-19

We are in challenging and stressful times and it is critical that business leaders consider how our thoughts and actions might help or hinder our own resilience and that of those around us.

It is easy to get wrapped up in our own issues and to lose sight of the difficulties and pressures that your most valuable resource, your staff, may be trying to deal with.

The attached guide prepared by Dr Lucy Hone and Dr Denise Quinlan of the New Zealand Institute of Wellbeing and Resilience provides great practical strategies that may assist both yourself and your staff in coping in the days and weeks ahead. We strongly recommend making this guide available to all staff.

Visit their website for advice about coping with Covid-19 and to access the resource guide.

We also stress the following message:

If over days and weeks ahead your distress or stress symptoms are escalating, or if you feel you are not coping, help and professional support is available. If you are in self-isolation, call HEALTHLINE first on 0800 611 116.

For support with grief, anxiety, distress or mental wellbeing, you can call or text 1737 to talk with a trained counsellor for free, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

 

NZSA HR Advice Line – 0800 HR LIVE or 0800 475 483

We remind our members that they can access free HR advice through the NZSA HR Advice Line on 0800 475 483 or nzsa@livewirehr.co.nz.

Rebecca from Livewire HR (our contract provider for the service) has prepared a list of commonly asked questions and responses specific to Covid-19, to access the questions and responses click here.

Stay safe and keep well.

From the NZSA team.

Free NZSA Member Offer – Planning for lock-down exit and business continuity

Whilst many security businesses have been focused on reacting to an ever-changing environment, it is critical that business owners and leaders are developing plans that will ensure their business is positioned as well as possible as we head towards a post lock-down environment.

Recent surveys of SME’s (small and medium size enterprises) indicate that some 30% do not expect to be in business by the end of this year, and should that eventuate, it will place extreme pressure on all businesses, even those that are currently financially sound.

The NZSA is very pleased to announce that we have formalised an agreement with leading financial advisors Smetric to provide Cash flow Management and Business Support services to our members.

Smetric will provide the service to NZSA members, with less than 50 staff, utilising a government nationwide support package of $2,000 per business that can be applied to businesses who employ people, were financially sound pre Covid-19, are negatively affected by the virus, and who anticipate continuing in a viable manner and hiring people post Covid-19. Please note that Smetric only offer this service to selected associations and for businesses with less than 50 staff.

Smetric’s have a team of very experienced advisors and have worked with a number of security providers in recent years.

Smetric can provide fully funded advice that covers:

Financial review and cash flow forecasting
– Actions to stabilise cash flow during the lock-down and in following months
– Scenario planning for the business post lock-down and strategies in place
– Review of customer base to keep as many customers as possible and explore any quick win new opportunities
– Review supply chain and resource continuity risks and mitigation
– Review operational and capacity requirements post lock-down.

Outcomes
– Stabilise cash flow during and post lock-down
– Prioritise risks and quick wins
– Develop a 90-day plan to execute quickly and effectively.

Businesses have to meet a clear set of criteria and apply through the Covid-19 Business Support application process which is administered by the Regional Business Partnership Network. Smetric will guide you through this process.

For more information on Smetric and the services provided please refer to their website.

If you wish to take up this offer, please email Warwick at Smetric warwick@smetric.co.nz and request a proposal form.

Stay safe and keep well.

From the NZSA team.

NZSA Covid-19 Security Update – Essential Workers Leave Payment Scheme & PPE

The following information is provided to assist our members through this evolving situation. We would also like to clarify that the information we provide is from the latest government press releases and from contacts within government agencies. In some cases our information may be in conflict with what appears on the official Government Covid-19 website as the site is updated retrospectively every one or two days.

 

Essential Workers Leave Payment Scheme

This is a new payment introduced today and will have direct relevance to those security providers who have not met the qualification criteria for the wage subsidies (i.e. not suffered a significant revenue decline) but have staff on leave as a direct result of:

  1. Workers who are self-isolating because they have contracted the virus or have come into contact with someone who has contracted the virus (or have a dependent they need to care for who is sick or self-isolating).
  1. Workers deemed at higher risk if they contract Covid-19, and as such should self-isolate.
  1. Workers who have household members who are deemed at higher risk if they contract Covid-19.

The scheme offers the same rates as the Wage Subsidy Scheme of $585.80 per week for full-time workers and $350.00 per week for part-time workers.

Details on eligibility and submitting claims can be found on the Work and Income website.

 

PPE

Several private sector businesses and benefactors have stepped in and arranged 11 charter flights of PPE sourced from China with the first flight arriving last night. The order includes some 41 million face masks as well as gloves, gowns, eye protection and sanitiser. Delivery will be prioritised to front-line health services but volumes should be more than sufficient to meet all essential service providers.

If you urgently require PPE can you please email gary@security.org.nz with an indication of the items and volumes required and we will endeavour to secure a bulk consignment specifically for the security sector.

 

Labour Resources

For those not aware, we have expanded our MSD Skills for Industry Work Broker Programme so that we now target finding employment for those who have been displaced or made redundant through current events and not just those on a benefit with MSD.

We currently have in excess of 700 vacancies for security officers registered with us on behalf of our members. Whilst demand is largest in the main cities, vacancies are nationwide.

We are advertising and promoting our service across a wide range of channels and last week alone our team received over 100 expressions of interest from individuals seeking employment. Andrea and Napat are working very hard to follow up with these individuals, to conduct background screening to ensure suitability for the industry and to then refer them to our members for interviewing and potentially employment. As part of our process we are submitting and paying for the CoA application for the candidate (they complete the paperwork through our portal).

If you need staff and aren’t registered with us please contact Andrea on andrea@security.org.nz or on 0274 502020.

 

Wage Subsidies

There is still a lot of confusion around the ability for businesses to claim the wage subsidies and the process to be followed. The NZSA HR Advisory Service provider, Livewire HR, have provided a blog with relevant tips and information, including a template for explaining the process to your employees for their consideration.

Stay safe and keep well.

From the NZSA team.

NZSA Covid-19 Security Update – PPE & Workers for Industry

PPE

From discussion with various suppliers and government departments we believe that the supply of PPE will be an ongoing problem so encourage our members to order in volumes sufficient to meet extended time frames beyond the proposed conclusion of the lock-down and ensure that existing stocks are closely managed and forward orders placed well in advance.

 

Workers for Industry

The NZSA is working hard to find workers to meet the 500+ vacancies that we currently have recorded on behalf of our members. We have job listings with all major employment sites, including with MSD, and have been in contact with multiple industry associations asking that they refer employees faced with redundancy to our website.

We are also actively promoting security industry employment opportunities via Facebook and LinkedIn and request the support of our members in promoting our postings to their wider social and business networks.

Stay safe and keep well.

From the NZSA team.

NZSA Covid-19 Security Update – Essential Services, Wage Subsidy & PPE

Please find detailed below latest information provided by government agencies. We note that latest guidance may differ from earlier communications and that members need to be aware of policy updates.

 

Essential Services

Security Services are defined as essential services however latest guidance states “Undertaking routine maintenance and supply of non essential resources would not constitute essential service, however providers can maintain and sustain a minimum capability to respond to urgent requests for supplies and/or repairs to key infrastructure. For any businesses that are designated as essential, or asked to maintain and sustain a minimum capacity, it is expected that strict protocols are in place for health and safety measures and contact tracing”.

Our interpretation is that guard, patrol and monitoring services are not impacted however approved security technician duties exclude routine maintenance and non essential installations.

 

Employer Wage Subsidy

Changes to the Wage Subsidy were introduced on the 27th March and included the removal of the Leave Payment Scheme. The rationale for this was that the scheme was originally set up when few people were in self isolation and was no longer fit for purpose.

This has however left a significant void in that funding to cover the wage cost of staff either in self isolation or directly impacted by Covid-19 is only available to businesses who have experienced at least a 30% drop in income.

Government has advised that is is aware of the issue and is working on arrangements for those in essential work who require sick leave due to Covid-19 and will be announcing further measures to cover this in coming days.

We are aware that this impacts onto many of our members and will provide an update as soon as it is available.

We also remind members who have experienced a significant drop in work volumes that financial support is readily available and full details, including claim forms, are available on the MSD website.

 

PPE

Members will be aware from the press coverage that this is a continuing area of frustration with incoming supplies being prioritised toward front-line health care workers.

The new government agency being overseen by previous Air NZ CEO Rob Ffyfe is setting up a website detailing suppliers of PPE and current stock levels and encouraging essential service providers to place orders on a controlled supply basis. It was indicated the site would be up and running by today however details are not available at the time of this communication. Again we will relay details to our members on receipt.

Stay safe and keep well.

From the NZSA team.

NZSA Security Business Update

Whilst our recent focus has correctly been on navigating the ever changing and rapidly evolving Covid-19 landscape, we also need to be mindful that normal business matters cannot be ignored, particularly around legislative compliance and ensuring continuation of critical administrative functions.

 

Increase in Minimum Wage

The minimum wage increases to $18.90 effective 1st April 2020.

 

Statutory Holiday Entitlements

The following Statutory Holidays fall during April:

– Good Friday                     Friday 10th April

– Easter Monday                 Monday 13th April

– Anzac Day                        Saturday 25th April

– Anzac Day observance    Monday 27th April

Southland Anniversary Day is also observed on Tuesday 14th April.

Employers must ensure compliance with all entitlements for staff working on those days or who are normally rostered to work on those days.

If you have any questions or concerns about payroll or HR matters, please remember that NZSA members can receive free expert advice by contacting our HR Advisory Service:

Phone:       HR LIVE (0800 475 483)

Email:        nzsa@livewirehr.co.nz

 

Launch of Integrity Line Service for Members

The launch of the NZSA Integrity Line service originally targeted for the 1st April will be slightly delayed but we expect to have a full overview of the service, and template staff letters and posters, ready for delivery to our members within the next few weeks.

We appreciate that the timing may not be ideal for some of our members but for those who have lost work this may be an opportunity to focus on the business rather than working in it, and the Integrity Line service would provide a good news story for employees given that it is focused on the safety and welfare of staff.

 

NZSA Membership Invoices

Over the next week we will be issuing our invoices for the 2020/2021 membership year. Again we appreciate that the timing is not ideal, however we also recognise the importance of maintaining core functions and ensuring individual business financial viability.

Please note that we are happy for the invoices to be paid by monthly instalment or to arrange deferred payment where necessary and request that you contact Tacia with your invoice number on nzsa@security.org.nz or 0273 817724 to discuss options.

We would also like to suggest to all non NZSA members receiving our communications that this may be a good time to assess the value of membership. The application forms are available on our website and at this time we do not require the statutory declaration to be JP witnessed.

Stay safe and keep well.

From the NZSA team.