In the light of the recent measures taken in order to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus pandemic, we at Fabrit Global have taken the appropriate measures too.
But before I share our approach to this crisis, I would like to take a moment to reflect on how much technology helps us in this situation. 30 years ago, it wouldn’t have been possible for so many people to work remotely, because the lack of infrastructure flexibility and… well, probably their jobs didn’t even exist back then.
And even now… how many teams or companies can afford to work fully remotely?
We always encouraged our team to work around their personal activities, rather than let the work dictate their lives. Each team member is responsible for their own schedule and they are free to set their own working schedule that best fits them.
We have been working remotely, but never like this. I will have to admit that this is a challenge even for us. We had our entire team working from outside the office when we were doing week-long teambuildings, but we never had the entire team working separately. I wonder how larger companies are handling this situation. I guess they are still figuring this out as we speak…
Anyway, without further ado, here are the top highlights from Fabrit during these critical times!
Everyone Works Remotely Until Further Notice
Starting Monday, 16th March, the entire Fabrit Global team works remotely.
Our entire team of developers is based in Romania and on Monday the President declared a State of Emergency for at least one month and urged companies to allow, where possible, remote work for their employees.
We are fortunate to work in an industry that is highly flexible and we have the advantage of being an agile compact team, but what about giant companies that have a lot of systems and procedures in place? How can they handle this situation?
The overall safety of a nation (not just our team) is more important than having everyone in the same place. So everyone is working remotely, until the whole crisis gets better.
I believe companies will need, if they haven’t already started, to think of ways that would allow their employees to work from home, in the end to adopt workplaces of the future.
Communication With Clients and Deliverables
Our clients are based worldwide: from the UK, US, to Malaysia and Australia. So we already have the practice of communicating remotely with them.
The communication with our clients won’t be affected. We keep in touch with them as usual via email, Skype or phone calls. Deliverables are also on track, as scheduled.
Even if we work pretty much as usual, we are still dependent on client’s feedback and response. If any of our clients is seriously affected by the coronavirus crisis, our work can be impacted too.
But we’re doing everything we can to be there for our clients by being flexible and highly responsive.
Internal communication has to be more efficient than ever during these times.
I will leave below a few tools we use for our internal communication and to keep track of our work, hoping that you could find some inspiration:
- Slack – for internal communication about projects and not only
- Google Drive and Azure – luckily, our entire infrastructure is already into the cloud and easily accessible from everywhere
- Zoom and Skype – for daily stand-us and client meetings
- Asana and Azure Boards – for projects planning and progress tracking
- Clockify – for timesheet control
I would repeat myself by saying that we are lucky because we were already using all these tools. So far, we didn’t feel the need to adopt anything else but a comprehensive list of tools to help you in this situation can be found here: https://techagainstcoronavirus.com/
It helped a lot that we already had all our files stored in a cloud and the team was used to communicating through these channels.
Companies that refused to adopt a more digital working environment, are definitely feeling the impact now. As I always say, technology should be embraced as soon as possible, otherwise, you would be left behind.
Keeping a Working Routine in Place
There’s no secret that working from home has its perks but also some drawbacks. It can be difficult to separate work from personal time and it’s up to every single one of us now to set the boundaries.
In order to keep a working routine in place, each team member reports each morning the status of his work. Internal meetings are set between team members accordingly, in order to support each other.
Let’s Also Talk About Security
Working from home for an entire company comes with lots of problems as well, especially for your IT department. Office laptops, VPNs, firewalls and restricted IP addresses are just a few ways we handle this concern in Fabrit.
We all need to be aware of cybersecurity concerns.
Do you have VPN setup? Do you have laptops for everyone or are your colleagues using their own PCs? Make sure they all know the right procedures while connecting to the company’s network, like the website they are accessing, if they have secure Wi-Fi routers, if they are aware of phishing emails or if they are using any insecure applications.
Keep Morale Up
There’s no point hiding it: this entire situation is stressful and we all worry about the outcome.
We try to stay positive and based on the many jokes and funny videos I see on our Slack channels, I would say the team keeps its spirits up.
Last, But not Least
We are fully aware all these measures ask for a common effort from both me and Andrei as the leaders of the company, but from our team too – who have been more than supportive and efficient.
Last but not least, I would like to use this opportunity to encourage other fellow business owners to try to adapt as much as possible. We know the economy will have to suffer due to this situation and it’s up to us to bring our contribution to make this impact minimal. I hope you found some inspiration here about how to handle this situation.