As we reflect on 2020, the year had many unexpected turns that forced us (and the world) to look hard at our daily lives and address the need for change. Many of the challenges that we faced highlighted the need for digital tools to improve lives and assist with basic requirements, such as access to healthcare in a world facing a pandemic, tracking and delivering tests and vaccines, handling overwhelming demand for services and managing the process effectively.
At 365 Response, we were not alone in facing the challenge of having to completely overhaul the way our staff worked and how we interacted with each other. We were forced to make some tough decisions to close our physical offices and learn the best ways to support our teams and our customers from home.
As a technology company driving a digital revolution in the provision of transport services, we had to quickly adapt to the situation, and build in Covid-safe requirements to support our clients in continuing to provide high levels of service and care.
As a small business, we are fortunately well placed to contend with a pandemic, as we have a talented workforce who constantly strive to challenge the status quo and suggest newer, more efficient ways of working, to provide opportunities for time and cost savings. Our Chief Executive Officer and Founder, Sarah Fatchett has many years of senior-level operational experience in the Ambulance Service, where she was specifically trained to deal with pandemics. This level of preparation and valuable experience helped navigate 365 Response through 2020 and be fortunate to finish the year in a stronger position, with notable successes.
We supported the NHS and Local Authorities with buying transport
Throughout 2020, our eProcure platform was responsible for booking thousands of shifts and journey requirements for NHS and Ambulance Trusts across England and Wales. We’re proud to have assisted with urgent requirements at a time when we were needed most, consistently providing an average cover rate of 97%.
Utilising our innovative 365 Smart Platform, we have worked with some of the largest councils and transport providers to safely transport thousands of children to and from their special education needs schools. Working closely with our customers, we were able to quickly implement daily checklists to enable them to keep track of new KPIs, such as deep cleaning and essential Covid-19 safety measures. Our smart systems were able to swiftly amend schedules and requirements to account for social distancing and plan routes according to strict parameters for the passengers travelling on them.
All in all, we have facilitated thousands of journeys through our eProcure and 365 Smart Platform in 2020, with plans to significantly grow these figures throughout 2021. Our pioneering software is accessible to all Local Authorities and NHS and Ambulance Trusts, with no consultation or setup costs, as we believe every child should have the support that they need to get to and from their place of education, and every patient should be quickly and safely transported to a place of care when they need it.
We adapted with Covid-19 and we helped our customers to adapt too
In addition to the need to adapt to home working and having limited physical interactions with our team, there was a need to quickly understand the changing landscape for our clients.
In 2019, we began working with NHS England Specialised Commissioning to provide Specialist Transport Call Handling support for the delivery of critical care to sick neonates, children and adults in the East Midlands. In April of 2020, this support was extended to include Adult Critical Care. The additional service was set up in just a matter of days to support the huge increase in activity and movement of critically ill patients to specialist hospitals, as a result of Covid-19.
The eProcure Digital Marketplace Platform saw a significant increase in demand throughout 2020, due to the pressures placed on NHS organisations and Ambulance Trusts of increased volumes of patients being transported. Our teams worked hard to onboard as many compliant suppliers as possible, to ensure a vast market of providers was available to accommodate these additional needs.
Richard Morris, PTS Business Manager at North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust shared, “During Covid-19, 365 Response played an invaluable role in coordinating new ambulance providers for inspection. The pre-inspection liaison and managing the setup for successful providers took a lot of pressure from us and was very much appreciated.”
We gained wonderful new customers!
Through our hard work and determination, we have been fortunate to work with several new clients in 2020. Expanding our customer base to include large private organisations such as SAGA Holidays and National Express Accessible Transport.
We’re excited to be working with leading transport provider, National Express, to change the landscape of Home to School Transport across the West Midlands. Vinay Parmar, Managing Director, commented
“We’re really excited to be working with 365 Response on the roll-out of their Smart Platform on our services. It is a key part of our strategy to digitise operations and bring innovation to our processes, helping to create efficiencies which enable us to deliver more value for money to local authorities, as well as increased visibility and reassurance around safety and safeguarding.”
Working alongside SAGA Holidays, we’re pleased to be using our digital transport software to improve the passenger experience for holiday-makers. The team at 365 Response was particularly proud to have been selected to work on this project, having been shortlisted from a large list of global software providers.
Aaron Fox, Driver Performance Manager at SAGA commented,
“The 365 Smart Platform provides a comprehensive compliance and risk management solution which will enable us to ensure a smooth and enjoyable holiday experience from start to finish.”
We have continued to nurture relationships with our existing clients and looked at new ways of supporting them through Covid-19. Community Transport Glasgow used our 365 Smart Platform to facilitate the delivery of care packs and food supplies to communities who were isolating, and booking appointments to get elderly patients safely to and from Covid-19 testing centres.
We had the great opportunity to work with our long-time customer, Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (GMMH), to implement our 365 Smart Platform Courier Module; the Courier module enables organisations to better manage their internal logistics requirements, such as the moving of blood and samples, linens, waste etc.
Speaking of the implementation, Lyndsey Farquhar, Facilities Manager at GMMH commented, “Overall, the 365 Smart Platform is going to help us implement a completely new way of working.”
Further to our inclusion on the G Cloud 11 framework in 2019, we are pleased to share that we were accepted onto the recent G Cloud 12 framework, allowing government organisations to easily procure 365 Response solutions for transport management and wellbeing services.
We received national recognition for our work
At 365 Response we work hard to provide solutions that offer genuine benefits to our customers and we have been incredibly lucky to have received numerous rounds of funding and investment from Innovate UK. We’re proud to say that our solutions have been funded by the NHS, for the NHS, and working with the NHS.
We were recognised for our work in 2020, being shortlisted for two National GO Awards – the awards are specifically held for acknowledging excellence in public procurement. Our eProcure Digital Marketplace was shortlisted for ‘Best Service’, and our work with North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust was recognised in the Supplier Relationship Management Award category.
365 Response was praised for innovation, being voted as the number one most innovative technology company in Yorkshire & Humberside by BusinessCloud.
As 2020 drew to a close, we were thrilled to be shortlisted in the HSJ Partnership of the Year Award for our outstanding dedication to improving healthcare and effective collaboration with the NHS.
HSJ Editor, Alastair McLellan said
“We would like to congratulate 365 Response on being nominated in the category of ‘HealthTech Partnership of the Year’ ahead of the HSJ Partnership Awards 2021. We are looking forward to welcoming them to the ceremony in June, to join us in recognising the very best collaborations and innovations in the healthcare sector.”
The Business Growth Fund invested in us and we expanded our team
In September 2020 we shared the exciting news that we had received a £3 million investment by the UK’s most active growth capital investor. This investment is being used to rapidly accelerate the development of the 365 Smart Platform and to further grow our talented team.
2020 saw the introduction of many experienced and valuable members to the 365 Response Team. We introduced Duane Lawrence as our Chairman, Dean Barber as our Chief Financial Officer, Chris Ackerman as Associate Director, Luke Pelling as Associate Commercial Director and Jennie Lucas as our Subject Matter Expert for Home to School Transport, amongst many other talented appointments.
You can trust us with your data
Throughout the year – every year – we diligently work to not only meet but to exceed expectations set out by our clients and the assessors that work with us to gain ISO and Cyber Essentials certifications. As a requirement for being certified to ISO 9001 and ISO 27001 365 Response undergoes regular internal and external assessments. Once again, in 2020 we retained our certifications and we will continue to use them to demonstrate our dedication to data security and protection.
2021 will no doubt present many challenges, however, we look forward to facing these with our growing team and continuing to innovate through technology for our clients, old and new.
In the coming months, we have lots of exciting announcements for our services and our people, which we look forward to sharing as we introduce regular updates and continue to share on our social media channels. Follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter so you never miss an update.
One thing we are certain of is that we will continue to live our company values, of always learning, being brave and bold, caring about what we say and do, and doing something good every day. What good will you do today?