By Zuhara Yusoff
Lloyd’s has confirmed that it will reopen its underwriting room on 1 September, with strict new rules in place and a new-look environment. However, only 45% of its staff will be allowed to return in an effort to ensure social distancing.
Clear screens around the underwriting boxes, temperature-check thermal cameras and a click-and-collect takeaway catering service are among the changes workers will see when they return to the office. Regular deep cleans, queueing and one-way systems will be implemented to limit the potential spread of the virus, said Lloyd’s chief executive John Neal.
Lloyd’s is also planning to open a virtual underwriting room – an online environment that “will combine the best features of 1 Lime Street with digital technology to create efficient, smart and collaborative ways of doing business”, said Mr Neal.
Brokers and underwriters can hold virtual meetings in private at the new digital booths and there will be a help desk on the ground floor of the building to help people struggling with the new digital system.
Lloyd’s shuttered its underwriting room on 19 March in a move that was in line with the UK government’s advice to avoid all non-essential contact to stem the spread of the pandemic. It was the first closure of physical trading in the market’s 330-year history.
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