Innovative South African companies adapt to COVID-19
Amazon announced last week it was hiring 100 000 new employees to cope with the increased demand in online shopping. The coronavirus has turned the world upside down in the past month as we have been introduced to the term social distancing – seen as the only way to slow down the virus.
The change has been at a dizzying pace and, while many companies have had to scramble to survive, some are seeing an increase in demand as a result of the dramatically changed working environment.
South Africa has become home to many large call centres and these are potentially very hard hit as they run contrary to social distancing guidelines. Bruce von Maltitz of 1Stream, a cloud-based call centre company, says following President Cyril Ramaphosa's declaration of a National State of Disaster on 14 March, numerous call centres are looking to allow their staff to operate from home.
Fortunately, the technology is available to do this fairly effortlessly. In this past week already, one of our clients deployed 200 seats directly from an office into people's homes. The ability to keep staff safe and productive, measuring quality and activity is very important in a distributed environment. "Fortunately, we can help with all the tools to quickly implement these type of solutions," says Von Maltitz.