1. What is Coronavirus COVID-19?
- Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses which may cause illness in animals or humans. In humans, several coronaviruses are known to cause respiratory infections ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases.
- COVID-19 is the infectious disease caused by the most recently discovered coronavirus. This new virus and disease were unknown before the outbreak began in Wuhan, China, in Dec 2019.
- People can catch COVID-19 from others who have the virus. The disease can spread from person to person through small droplets from the nose or mouth which are spread when a person with COVID-19 coughs or exhales.
Most people (about 80%) recover from the disease without needing special treatment. Around 1 out of every 6 people who gets COVID-19 becomes seriously ill and develops difficulty breathing. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems are more likely to develop serious illness.
You can read more about the Coronavirus disease in this Fact Sheet from the AU Government
Be informed of the latest updates in Australian Government - Department of Health and Worldwide Statistics
- Most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, tiredness, and dry cough. A smaller number of patients may have aches and pains, nasal congestion, runny nose, sore throat or diarrhea.
- If you experience any symptoms such as nausea, fever, cough or shortness of breath, seek medical advice from your doctor immediately. If you are a team member of InDebted please inform your manager and your colleagues.
2. Our Response to COVID-19
- We’re committed to the safety and wellbeing of our team and community and as part of that our leadership team have been monitoring the spread of COVID-19 globally with a particular focus in Sydney and Manila where we maintain operations.
- Best practice in these situations is not to panic but to have a plan ready, and to take proactive precautions. We are implementing the following policy as a precaution to protect everyone and maintain business continuity as the situation evolves.
We have activated our Business Continuity Plan from Friday 13th of March, which includes:
- Enabling work from home capabilities within Sydney and Manila offices which includes enabling employees with office supplies, laptop, charger and internet access;
- Coordinating global and local communications with our employees, clients and customers;
- Limiting all non-essential business travel as the following:
- We are cancelling all non-essential business travel to areas listed by the CDC as Level 1 or 2 and keeping careful watch on travel to Level 3 areas. If you need to travel to a Level 1 or 2 area, you will be asked to work from home for 14 days post-travel. If you need to travel to a Level 3 area, we highly recommend that you follow the CDC guidelines and stay away from anyone exhibiting illness, wash hands more frequently, and track your own health for 14 days post-travel.
- If you have a work-related trip planned and you are uncomfortable traveling, please speak to your manager so we can make alternate plans/accommodations. If you are required to travel for work and are not allowed to return home for some reason, the company will support you to the extent possible, including allowing you to work remotely, covering living expenses and giving paid time off if you are unable to work remotely.
- If you are planning any personal travel, please let your manager and our People team know. Any staff member planning to visit a Level 1 or 2 area will be asked to work from home for 14 days post-return. Anyone visiting a Level 3 area will be asked to be diligent about avoiding sick people and washing their hands, and to closely monitor their health upon return. Please note that if you travel for personal reasons and are unable to return home/to work, the company will do its best to accomodate you working remotely but will not be able to cover any costs or time off beyond your accrued vacation days.
On the 20th of March 2020 we implemented the following additional measures:
- Extended our work from home capabilities by ensuring that our team members were adequately trained and resourced. This included the distribution of additional training and reference material. Furthermore, all team members have been provided with additional equipment to best replicate their office setup. Where required, all team members have had their office equipment delivered to their home and InDebted has provided furniture (desks and chairs) to those that require it.
- Effective Monday the 23rd of March 2020 our office in Sydney will be officially closed until Monday the 6th of April 2020. We will continue to monitor the situation during this time and update our policy accordingly.
- Given the considerable restrictions placed upon our team members in Manila we have provided all Philippines based staff with a AUD $500 wellbeing allowance to ensure that they and their families are adequately supported during this difficult time.
- Cancelled all business related travel until further notice.
3. COVID-19 Slack Channel
- We have a slack channel dedicated to COVID-19 (#COVID-19) which allows us to update all of our team in real time with resources to support working from home and the latest news about Coronavirus COVID-19. We encourage all staff at InDebted to use this to engage with co-workers, and share your experience, find inspiration, and see how your colleagues are doing.
4. Maintaining Information Security
- Working from home is a normal element of day to day life at InDebted and is a crucial element of our Business Continuity Plan. Our infrastructure, systems, and devices are all secured and maintained to enable remote and flexible working.
- Although all crucial systems are restricted to only allow access via our VPN, staff are reminded to always use our company VPN when working remotely.
- All company policies that support our Information Security Management System and ISO27001 certification remain in place during this time. This includes our clean desk and clear screen policy which staff should ensure are adhered to at all times.
5. Supporting our Customers
- We recognise that this may be a difficult time for many of our customers. Fortunately, our focus on delivering exceptional customer experiences already ensures we are best supported to help our vulnerable customers and those experiencing financial hardship during this time.
- In line with our existing procedures all customers who need additional assistance and flexibility during this time will be supported.
- Recognising the scale and impact of this situation our operational teams have made changes to our customer communications to ensure that they understand we are here to support them during this time.
- We have modified our initial customer engagement strategy to offer all customers flexibility with their accounts through a open and flexible payment arrangement offering.
6. Your Feedback
- Your feedback, as well as your patience and understanding, will be critical during this time. Please feel free to share any and all suggestions on our company Slack Channel. If you are a client of InDebted and have further questions please contact your client success manager.