The Executive have proposed new changes to the Coronavirus NI Restrictions currently in place.

Since 26th December 2020, Northern Ireland has been in an extended period of lockdown due to Coronavirus, currently lasting 15 weeks without any major changes or alterations.

On the 2nd March, the Executive previously had agreed upon a 5 step plan, however faced criticism from businesses for not setting indicative dates.

Today, dates have been set by Government, providing a clear pathway out of lockdown to businesses across Northern Ireland. As Coronavirus cases are falling, it’s a welcome adjustment back to a sense of normality in our communities.

For many business owners, today’s meeting and the proposals outlined below are a welcome move by the Executive.

Whilst some industries will be restricted for the coming weeks, the proposal brought forward today highlights a future period of hope for businesses across Northern Ireland post-pandemic, and the end is well and truly in sight.

What is changing and when?

Today on the 15th April, the Executive have introduced the following changes:

  • 23rd April, close contact services will reopen, including services such as Hairdressers, Barbers, Driving Lessons, Make-up artists and tanning booths
  • 30th April, Non-Essential Retail can reopen, and self-contained tourist accommodation may host guests. Bars, restaurants and outdoor dining may also reopen.
  • 24th May, Indoor dining, restaurants, hotels and pubs may reopen their doors.

Coronavirus Lockdown Changes: What do businesses need to do to prepare?

Whilst the changes are welcome and business is resuming, it is understood that there will be restrictions within these settings.

For businesses, compliance with guidelines, effective social distancing, and safety will be key. As the lockdown is lifted, we are advising business owners to consider our 6 P’s approach to Workplace Preparedness. Have you considered the following areas?

6 Ps model created by VIable Corporate Services, outlining 6 considerations for business to prepare for Workplace Preparedness in a post-COVID Working environment
VIable Corporate Services – 6Ps Coronavirus Workplace Preparedness Model

Applying the VIable 6 P’s approach therefore, have you considered the following actions:

  • A 6-12 month transition plan as your business exits lockdown and the environment changes?
  • A risk assessment conducted, as well as COVID Working Policies and Health and Safety reviews?
  • Furlough changes and staff wellbeing as we transition again into a new working context?
  • Programme delivery and customer safety – working to ensure customers are informed and aware of guidelines via effective communication strategies?

The move by the Executive today is widely welcomed, but organisations meet the changes with organisational readiness.

Businesses must adapt again, and use resilient strategies to ensure safe and secure return to work.

The VIable team would like to take this opportunity to offer our best wishes to businesses and our partners as they reopen.

We are here to help, and if any organisation needs guidance or advisory services to support them in this period of transition, contact us below.

Contact VIable for help securing your Coronavirus Workplace Preparedness

If you want to learn more about our 6 P’s approach, and how we can help your organisations’ Workplace Preparedness post-COVID, do not hesitate to reach out.

VIable provide outsourced expertise and services across all business functions in Finance, HR, Marketing and Operations.

VIable offer high-quality services,  with a social ethos of realising the potential of our young people. We are a Professional Corporate Services truly making a difference in our Communities. As a social enterprise, we reinvest our profits into youth programming.

If your business needs back-office support in preparing to reopen, and you want to make a positive impact on your community whilst doing so, please contact us at, or free call us at 028 9600 2317, or read more about our services at