Coronavirus (COVID-19)

This page will be reviewed regularly to share UK government and sector advice relating to Coronavirus. It was last reviewed on 1 April.

Other AIM Coronavirus resources on e.g. Finance, HR and 1-1 advice can be accessed here.

The primary concern is to ensure the well-being of our members, their staff, volunteers and visitors and we are aware that the situation with Coronavirus or COVID-19 is evolving, so for the very latest information, do check the guidance available on Public Health England and NHS websites.

Medical Advice for individuals and workplaces

The NHS Coronavirus pages contain the very latest advice and guidance, including preventative measures and responses to common questions.

Public Health England have produced useful guidance for workplaces looking to advise their staff in relation to coronavirus.

The NCVO has produced a summary page of advice and guidance on its webpages.

AIM Advocacy

AIM is working hard with sector partners to push funders and government to provide the support independent museums will need during the difficult times ahead.

We are in regular discussion with DCMS and Arts Council England, amongst others, to make the case for that support, highlighting

  • that limited cash reserves threaten the survival of independent museums;
  • that those museums need grants not loans;
  • that the repurposing of existing funds is required now;
  • that collections are at risk;
  • that the sector is important to placemaking, and to the UK as a whole

This is reflected in this joint statement from National Museums Directors’ Council, Museums Association, Heritage Alliance, National Trust and AIM.

AIM is also working with colleagues at Charity Finance Group (CFG) to advocate for the sector – we were co-signatories to this letter to the Chancellor on 10 March. 

A summary of the support announced by the Chancellor on 20 March and what it means for AIM members can be found here.

Supporting your organisation 

What can you do to mitigate the organisational impact of Coronavirus? AIM has consulted with a range of members and partners on the collation of business continuity advice.

A practical guide for charity finance professionals 

AIM partners, Charity Finance Group (CFG) have put together a practical guide for charity finance professionals covering business continuity planning, cashflow management and insurance.

Read the resources

Business resilience checklist

Are you facing immediate issues? The following checklist may help members consider their current situation and plan for not just the present, but any challenging times.

1. Make sure your Board is fully aware of your situation and any foreseen challenges, early.

2. Keep communications open – ensure your staff, volunteers and any trade union are appraised of the situation.

3. Prepare a worst-case scenario cash flow and update it regularly. Depending on the financial stresses in your organisation, consider updating it weekly.

4. Have an early conversation with your bank to see what support it might provide – overdraft facilities, for example.

5. Talk to any significant grant providers (e.g. ACE, your Local Authority) early. See if grants can be paid earlier than planned but remember to have regard to cash flow later.

6. Talk with your most significant creditors and see what can be done to stage or even delay payments.

7. Identify your non-fixed costs. Can you reduce, delay, or even consider stopping them? Can you delay projects or similarly non-essential spending? Review the need for any new recruitment. Could it be delayed?

8. Step-up your credit control processes. Make sure that you are on top of any money that you are owed and watch for signs of financial distress from your significant debtors. Consider asking for upfront payments and / or larger deposits e.g. for any group or corporate bookings.

9. Draw on experienced financial expertise to assist in your understanding of the situation.

10. Be clear about your immediate liquidity. Avoid getting into a spiral of decline, especially if this is a short-term problem. And be ready for when things improve, too.

Useful links

NHS Advice

Public Health England Advice

AIM Coronavirus Resources 

NCVO Coronavirus response advice

CFG Finance Advice

Charity Tax Group’s summary of current business support measures 

Museums Association overview

Mind’s Wellness Action Plans

CIPD Advice for UK employers

Free Employment Law Advice For Business Owners and Employers

Free NCVO e-learning for charities

Your input 

AIM is currently talking to DCMS and other sector bodies, gathering intelligence and advocating for appropriate support for museums. If you have specific issues you would like us to be aware of contact us on info@aim-museums.co.uk