What a strange few months for the world. When planning new business goals for 2020, we don’t think any business took into consideration that a global health pandemic would top their list of priorities. March 2020 saw the world close down and slow down, businesses spiralled into the world of the unknown – everyone went digital pretty much overnight. Most of us had to battle the new working from home landscape which now included the never-ending pile of dishes, childcare and Zoom fatigue.

‘Obviously, this situation has hit a lot of people and businesses really hard….so we’re extremely grateful that about 80% of our work is currently unaffected,’ says Chris, CEO of Citrus Suite. For Citrus Suite, it was about keeping to business as usual as much as possible, asking themselves how do they pivot their business to tackle these new, pressing real world problems.

Citrus have been even more determined to help clients and businesses adapt to unexpected ways of working with a variety of new digital ideas rapidly taking shape in just a short turnaround. It’s all about maintaining the same level of integrity Citrus Suite work by and providing valuable solutions during a time of uncertainty, especially for Liverpool’s precious hospitality and entertainment industries.

So, how have Citrus faced a global pandemic? Not ones to blow their own trumpet, the team have been working hard behind the scenes, reacting instinctively to a world faced with lockdown.

‘There were a few projects related to events that were cancelled but hopefully they will pick back up when the events are rearranged,’ says Chris. Citrus had built software and apps for events and conferences which unfortunately could no longer be launched as planned, however, they saw this as an opportunity to adapt their business offerings, helping these conferences turn digital. The team worked proficiently to turn one of the session tracks scheduled at a US-based scientific conference, into a virtual session. With great success, there were over 1,200 registrants and over 850 people online at one time all streaming the live content.

VIRTUAL YOGA

Another successful and swift turnaround was for the popular annual festival hosted by Iyengar Yoga as Citrus were able to build and manage the web platform with an aggregate of over 10,000 session attendees across just one weekend. It was their first fully managed virtual convention with over 650 delegates from 26 countries and a true testament to Citrus’s hard-working web team – it included 12 hours each day of managing webinars, films, breakout sessions, networking, marketplace and more! 

MOBILE HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Patchwork Health is just one of the many projects that Citrus have helped to develop in the mobile tech space. Back in 2017/2018, Citrus built the system foundations for what is today known as Patchwork Health (previously Locum Tap) – a centralised strategy for a set of NHS hospitals which allows greater flexibility and empowerment to healthcare workers and employers and primarily manages safe staffing levels. As of 26th March 2020,  the team behind Patchwork opened up their platform, already used to book millions of hours worth of shifts, to help the NHS cope with the demands of the current crisis.

HOSPITALITY & ENTERTAINMENT SECTORS

One of the most pressing issues we face during this pandemic is the protection of our hospitality and entertainment sectors. Being forced to shut to the public and cease trading was a difficult decision for most businesses. Now, as lockdown is easing, Citrus wants to be sure they can offer digital solutions to local businesses so they can smoothly transition into new ways of trading.

Just a few projects taking off are:

MySafeSpaces. Our simple web-based tool is to help restaurants, pubs and other venues adhere to best practice on Test & Trace. The web app enables a hassle free way of capturing customers information with a simple QR code and online form.

MyFoodSpaces is another initiative which offers a new way for the hospitality industry to manage social distancing. Using a simple QR code, customers can easily order their food and drink via a web app at their tables, freeing up staff to focus on delivering great service, all while at a safe distance.

MySafeSpaces has already been successfully implemented in a Baltic Triangle hotspot, Love Lane Brewery.

‘Citrus Suite came to our rescue with MySafeSpaces and had it ready to go in 2 days. It’s a simple but effective solution that allows venues like us to securely gather Covid-19 track and trace details via a QR code…the app even links to our online food ordering system. A big thanks to the Citrus team!’ Becky – Marketing & Events Manager at Love Lane.

SOUND CITY

There are so many amazing initiatives happening all over Liverpool during this time – it’s inspiring to see how inventive people can be in times of a crisis. Take SoundCity for example, who Citrus lent a small helping hand to their new subscription streaming service, ‘Guest House.’ Born out of SoundCity’s passion for supporting the amazing talent in the music industry, Guest House allows people to still connect with the artists they love even during the lockdown.

It’s an amazing opportunity for artists to continue to make and share their music and allows for much needed income as the subscription fees are given directly to the artists.

It’s empowering to see how the Liverpool city region has dealt with such a crisis and the level of collaboration between businesses to help each other in a time of need is what truly sets the city apart.

It’s been a busy few months for Citrus and it’s a position they’re very thankful to be in. They’ve been continuing to do what they do best; providing digital solutions for customers that inform, engage and empower and they’re passionate about making sure they continue the good work. Get in touch today!

Guest blog post by Katie May

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