The COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic has created a host of new IT challenges, but the crisis is also giving the IT industry a chance to join hands (not literally) to help keep customers up and running.
It's safe to say that most businesses didn't factor a global pandemic into their 2020 plans and predictions.
The COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak has changed the landscape of work. Many businesses have enacted mandatory work-from-home policies to protect their employees and clients, while doing their part to help flatten the curve -- another phrase that none of us had in our vocabulary when we opened our 2020 calendars, but it refers to leveling the impact on hospitals and medical facilities.
Many employees are used to working from home part-time or on occasion. It's been a major adjustment for those suddenly working full-time remote, possibly with no advance notice. And that's not even factoring in having partners also trying to work from home in the same house and children that need to figure out remote learning at the same time as schools around the globe close their doors.
For solution providers who are used to interacting with customers on a daily basis and deploying their teams for on-site repairs, business has changed drastically.
TanChes Global Management, Inc., a Sugar Land, Texas-based solution provider, has been selling disaster recovery and business continuity solutions before it was "fashionable" to have them in place, said Tanaz Choudhury, president of TanChes Global Management.
Many disasters are one-time events that have a "deadline," like a weather event, a fire, or even a disgruntled employee taking a bat to the system. But, the coronavirus pandemic doesn't have a clear end date that businesses can cling to. For TanChes right now, it's all about keeping their customers up and running during the coronavirus crisis.
"We've been really busy, but it's definitely taking a toll on our employees and our resources, because many companies didn't plan for this," Choudhury said.
In addition to customers, the health and safety of TanChes employees is the top concern for Choudhury. "There's only so much everyone can do, and they're all running a mile a minute," she said.
A Light At The End Of The Tunnel
TanChes has been rotating the employees coming into the office. With a small staff, it’s been relativity easy for the company to maneuver. The hardest part originally, said Choudhury, was collaboration and communication, because the entire team is used to working together daily.
TanChes employees have been using several different videoconferencing and collaboration tools to work together when they’re not physically in the same room. But even in light of the obstacles, such as remote working long hours, supply-chain issues, and anxious customers, everything is working smoothly, Choudhury said.
Once companies navigate their way through the coronavirus, they will be far more receptive to talking about business continuity solutions and IT in general will be taken more seriously, predicted Choudhury.
“We do see a light at the end of the tunnel,” she said. “We all have a minute to think about how we are all just humans, and we’re all in it together.”