COVID-19 and HDN Activity

16 March 2020

The continuing spread of the COVID-19 Coronavirus is extremely concerning and, in line with other organisations, has already caused significant disruption to our activity. There is potential for further disruption in the months ahead.

This update is designed to pick up some of the common questions that we have been asked in terms of HDN activity.

Of course, our approach may change in light of new information or guidance.

HDN Office

It is business as usual and the HDN office is currently open and staffed.

All staff have facilities to work from home, and it may be that that in the coming days we move to all our team working remotely. There should however be no change in the response that you receive when you contact us.

We do however share our offices with Manningham Housing Association and should they decide to close the office, the decision to keep our office open will be taken out of our hands.

We are looking to produce more content in the coming weeks, so keep an eye out on all our media channels, for blogs, articles and other activity, and ensure that you keep up-to-date on the latest issues in the housing and diversity world.

HDN Events and Workshops
We are committed to maintaining our services as effectively as possible whilst reducing the potential risk to our staff and colleagues.
At this stage we are looking at our programme of events and workshops to see if we can move towards having delivering them remotely. This will inevitably mean that we some events are postponed to a later date.

We will be contacting course leaders and mentoring associates over the next few days, so that they are aware of our approach and can be trained in the use of our software. We will seek to ensure that recordings of our remote workshops are available for people who could not join in ‘live’.

Although the situation will be kept under constant review it is unlikely that will have any face-to-face workshops or events until at least the 1st September.

Training and Consultancy

We are working with clients to agree an approach to training and consultancy programmes that we have ongoing, so that it is in line with both our approach to moving much of our delivery to remote means, as well as the client’s own COVID-19 guidance.

Current HDN Mentoring Programmes
These are the Staff Mentoring, Board Excellence and Harnessing Board Diversity Programmes.

These continue with the proviso that we will be looking to move the workshops online; most organisations have in any case introduced their own policies with regard to social distancing and restrictions on travel.

We would recommend that mentors and mentees on these programmes to continue their discussions using remote collaboration tools, and act in a manner consistent with their own employer’s advice.

We have taken the decision to postpone the Staff Mentoring Celebration Event which was due to be held on 17th June. Current expert advice is that this coincides with the peak of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Depending on events the Conference will either be held later in the year, or we will have a ‘double’ celebration in 2021.

Mentoring Programme 2020-21
Recruitment for the forthcoming 2020-21 Staff Mentoring programme will continue as usual.

The Board Excellence Programme is a rolling recruitment and we will continue to recruit on this basis.

We will however emphasise that these programmes will for the time being be held using remote tools.

If you have any questions on this note please contact any of the following;

Mushtaq Khan
Carla Olfin
Shuang Qi