We wanted to ease your concerns and share our plan/process with all of our couples that are worried by the ramifications of the global COVID19 crisis the world is currently facing.
We are currently doing our best to operate business as per usual in Melbourne. However, there are many challenges ahead for us as wedding photographers & videographers. Currently, we are operating under the advice of our local Victorian & Federal Australian government and will abide by all legal requirements related to gatherings, travel, quarantine & isolation.
Our first priority is the health and well-being of our couples, staff and the wider community. We are aware of the months/years of planning that has gone into your wedding and the stress that these uncertain times may bring for couples having to make tough decisions during what is otherwise a beautiful joyous occasion. We therefore want you to know our commitment is to honor all bookings as we would normally do, so there is no need to worry about this. When and if required, we will help facilitate changes to dates & venues due to legal restrictions to the best of our ability. We have already had to take part in this process for a limited number of bookings, so the implications of these decisions by the government have been instant. The hope is this situation stabilises and there is some clarity but rest assured that we are actively preparing for all scenarios and want to make it as smooth as possible for our couples.
Weddings present a unique situation as it is a gathering of a broad mix of the community, young and old, in close proximity with guests who are sometimes from overseas. We interact with hundreds, sometimes thousands of people a week in different locations throughout the state of Victoria. This comes with a unique set of complications for our team and job during a time like this. We are also actively monitoring the travel situation to overseas destinations where weddings are booked this year. Currently the travel advice is changing fluidly, and we will be contacting those that need to be contacted to discuss the best options in the coming week.
Our teams will be taking extra precautions at weddings to ensure our health, safety, hygiene is not compromised and will also practice social distancing when possible. Many of these precautions we will be taking are complicated by the nature of the work we do. Please do not be alarmed if you see us wearing a mask during work to provide extra protection to those around us and ourselves. We will attempt to minimise all personal contact when it is not required. There is a very real possibility that we will have to rotate our teams and any team member that is unwell will not be available to work due to self-isolation or forced isolation and hence will need to be replaced by another team member.
It is important we commit to be a morally responsible business and hence do not to wish to impact our wider community in a negative way by working with an unknown illness. Our studio is currently still in operation, however we are already feeling the effects of this crisis. Two members of our editing team will be self-isolating as they return from overseas trips as per government requirements. Orders on albums & prints are facing delays and our admin team is overall dealing with an unexpected number of tough discussions that have to be prioritised.
In the event of further changes, we are planning a “work from home” strategy to continue to finish editing work. We anticipate this disruption to our normal editing routine may create delays out of our control as some of the high intensity work of photo & video editing can only be done in a studio environment. The process of collating work done at home and then processing it at our studio will most likely add extra time. As a small business, we do not have infinite resources to deal with such a massive unexpected shift and neither do we have the capacity to replace specialised editing staff at a moment’s notice.
In short, we will continue to operate throughout but could face reduced capacity. We hope everyone will be understanding and patient in these uncertain times. The burden of making these types of decisions has fallen on us due to the lack of guidance from our State and Federal Governments. The current stance taken by them is to carry on and get on with the job, which we have no problem with doing. However, rules around isolation, gathering bans and exposure to large crowds puts us in a precarious uncertain situation that could change at any time. Thank you for the understanding.
Rukshan / Team Ferndara