The business has a range of measures to combat the pandemic's worst impacts.
Share this article
For international tech SME, Payara Services, mitigation for the COVID-19 pandemic has been fairly minimal. Since its inception in 2017, the SME has remained a remote working organisation, with employees and contractors acting as one team globally.
The utilisation of various online platforms is already standard procedure among Payara’s 29 members of staff, based in 14 different countries around the world.
Through functions such as online chat, MS Teams and company wikis, team members can communicate with both one another and clients on a daily basis and ‘meet’ virtually when required. Through digital project management tools, project deadlines are transparent and always exceeded.
Where roughly half of the company was based at Payara’s UK Headquarters in the Malvern Science Park in Worcestershire before the coronavirus outbreak, all members of staff are now following suit and working from home for the foreseeable future.
Payara’s HR Manager, Julia Millidge, says she is aware that working from home for a long period of time can have an impact on employees’ health and wellbeing. For this reason, the firm has introduced a number of engagement activities to support both the mental and physical health of all team members.
During work hours, the following initiatives have been put in place:
A new Microsoft Teams channel duped “Cabin Fever” where team members can go for support if needed, especially those who are self-isolating or have been absent due to sickness.
“Water cooler” chat – consists of a daily quiz and fun challenges for everyone to get involved with. This also serves as a place for employees to discuss alternative extra-curricular activities and events.
COVID-19 internal wiki page for employees to keep up with the latest company news and updates regarding action being taken. This includes team leader info, business continuity plan and calendars, all to provide reassurance.
“Sayonara Shots” – end-of-day sign off for all team members with a cuppa to wind up the day’s events and create a necessary work/home split.
Support volunteering events through the business’ Volunteering Hub, known as the C-19 Heart Initiative.
As well as the above, an out of work hours initiative known as “Operation Night Fish” has also been launched. Its purpose is to allow individuals or groups of employees to create and lead ‘interest groups’ such as book, film, music and gaming clubs.
It’s no surprise that technology has been greatly affected by the coronavirus outbreak.
Due to self-isolation and social distancing, more people are working from home than ever before, customer service call centres are receiving their highest ever volume of calls and the majority of society is taking advantage of online grocery shopping and delivery, resulting in the online world taking a lot of slack.
Due to the increase in traffic on many online systems, Payara has seen a clear rise in the demand for its software support services.
With this increase in business comes a number of challenges for Payara. Business travel and much of the company’s marketing activity, including both international and regional conferences and events, have been cancelled.
Payara has also had to temporarily halt its recruitment campaign and hold off on trying to fill a number of vacant roles within the business.
Despite these unforeseen and unfortunate circumstances, Payara has responded to the pandemic through the introduction of a paid volunteer scheme, allowing its staff to support the local community where possible.
Through its ‘C-19 Heart Initiative’, volunteers can carry out tasks for the elderly and disabled, such as collecting and delivering medication or shopping for essential supplies.
Payara prides itself on the team culture that it has built since its inception, having recently welcomed the whole company to its EU office in Madeira (which was opened in response to Brexit) for a team-building week earlier this year.
The relationships formed during “Payara Week” gave the firm extra momentum to enter this unprecedented situation with confidence and community spirit.