IT Support turns to Health Contagion Worries? As February turned to March, the worries we faced piled up on each other like gnats on a boar…
The frightening scenes of people being sealed in their apartments with doors welded shut as Wuhan, China took quarantine to a level unheard of before now… Then they built an entire hospital in under a week (!) to treat those who had fallen ill. Grave concerns as the Coronavirus spread to Italy and rapidly took hold in Lombardy, the ski-resorts and other northern cities. Travel bans exercised then lifted. W.H.O. refusing to declare a pandemic. Yet, the grisly scenes and numbers being reported by John Hopkins worldwide tracker becoming more and more ominous. What did become clear, was with COVID-19 the vulnerable included the elderly and anyone with diabetes, asthma or compromised lung issues…
It was probably a month before the U.S.A. lock-downs began, that we started to shift:
Nate raised the question about onsite visits: We routinely go onsite to most of our clients at least once a month to provide desktop/user support and verify the physical health of their infrastructure. Was it wise for us to take the risk of getting infected? Or, God forbid, infecting someone at our clients’?
I, along with each of our Partners, called our Client business contacts to ask if they minded us reallocating the onsite cost/hours to remote while still assuring the same level of service & support?
Thank goodness, our remote control tools make it just as easy to fix problems hands off as it is going directly to the user’s workstation.
A wholehearted “Yes!” (I hadn’t realized how personal it could get… the stories of preexisting conditions, elderly parents at risk, worries about HR liability and workman’s comp, business travel, airports. And we hadn’t even reached the annual pollen allergy season in Atlanta!
We quickly re-prioritized the new user, desktop and server deployments to get the equipment installed while we had all hands available.
By the middle of February we were pretty well squared away and had everything set for a remote-only support model. I figured all we’d encounter were the odd equipment deliveries or meetings to review roadmaps or project plans, and I could certainly assume that risk for our clients.
Boy, was I wrong!