Working Through a Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 was (and still is) unprecedented in the impact it had on businesses. It became a true test if businesses were able to adapt and survive a rapidly changing world with many unknowns.

August 8th we received a letter from one of our clients thanking us for being part of what made them successful during the 2020 pandemic. We love hearing when we make a difference for someone. It makes all the efforts we put in every day worth it. They told us that while other companies were suffering or shutting down, they were not only still operating but having one of their best years. In the letter they cited us for our proactive efforts to set them up for working from home, training their staff, providing numerous laptops and iPads, and supporting their remote staff.

They didn't even slow down as the pandemic restrictions took effect and simply shifted from the office to home. For most companies there was no "simple" about this. Even if it could be done it was clunky and expensive. An unplanned and sudden change can be very expensive. Internetek is constantly evaluating business threats, though, and saw the potential issue coming. We didn't know if it was going to truly be a major issue or fizzle out, but we planned for the worst and began preparations.

Our preparations:
Stocked laptops, mics, webcams, and desktops.
One of our internal measures is how quickly we're able to resolve a client issue. As part of the efforts we take to decrease this measure we don't wait for ordering, shipping, and delivery. We carry stock of commonly needed items so we can respond faster to new hires or misbehaving computers. Leading up to the COVID-19 shutdowns we increased our stock to three times the normal.

Worked with clients to reconfigure systems to allow remote work.
Months in advance of people working from home we coordinated with our clients to reconfigure their various systems to allow for remote work. Rather than trying to do this after everyone has already been sent home and made it an emergency, we were able to carefully plan and implement the changes. This minimized the impact to production and avoided the securiy issues other companies experienced by rolling out a half-planned solution.

Pre-built laptops with basic settings that could be quickly deployed in large numbers.
To minimize the downtime and effort even further we pre-loaded all the laptops in our stock with everything needed to work from home. When we got word that a client needed to send people home, we already had everything ready to go and just had to drop it off or ship it to homes.

Training and support for staff working from home.
Before the pandemic most had only ever worked from the office. Working from home was a new and confusing experience. We recorded training videos, hosted webinars, released articles well in advance so everyone knew what to expect if they were going to be working from home. When it came time, our phones were staffed (from home) and we were able assist anyone that needed a little bit of extra help.
Are we pleased with ourselves?  Yes, we are.