Providing customers with peace of mind during unprecedented times.
With the arrival of COVID-19 in early 2020, every aspect of life as we know it has been turned upside down. From the way we attend school to the way we buy groceries, conduct our social lives, and do our jobs – it seems that nothing is the same.
Resilience – the ability to respond to adversity – hinges on how we adapt to stressful and life-altering situations. You can’t change your circumstances, but you can adjust how you plan and respond. And having a partner can make a big difference in your ability to thrive, much like having a Sherpa on your first trek through the Himalayas, or a PADI divemaster on your first dive off the Great Barrier Reef.
Sungard Availability Services (Sungard AS) serves as just such a partner to thousands of enterprises across the globe as it designs, builds and runs resilient and highly available IT environments that help customers achieve their desired business outcomes. Sungard AS has guided clients through everything from hurricanes to wildfires, domestic terrorism to epidemics for more than 40 years. And when COVID-19 hit, Sungard AS was well ahead of the crisis for its customers.
Every year, in accordance with Sungard AS’ quality management program, the data center operations (DCO) team practices and tests its pandemic response plan as part of its overall business continuity (BC) practice. The company validates personal protective equipment (PPE) and verifies that staff members – all the way up to the executive level – know their roles and responsibilities during any pandemic.
As the threat of COVID-19 began to infiltrate every aspect of life, businesses around the world wrestled with the magnitude of the situation – but Sungard AS was prepared: to ensure the safety of on-site workers, customers and third-party contractors; to maintain service to clients without disruption; and to go the extra mile for customers, the community and global organizations.
Sungard AS took a rapid and proactive approach to COVID-19, setting its pandemic response plan in motion in January. The company detailed prevention measures and safety guidelines for employees and visitors. It created a COVID-19 Resource Center and provided daily updates, customer FAQs and pandemic and customer response plans.
Due to lockdowns and restrictions, many customers couldn’t send workers to Sungard AS’ data centers to perform tasks that needed to be done in-person. Sungard AS quickly extended its operational support services to these customers at a reduced rate and waived long-term storage fees during the pandemic. Whether it was checking a piece of equipment or moving a cable, the DCO team performed many of the activities traditionally handled by customers themselves.
As social distancing limited the number of employees per facility, demand increased for Sungard AS’ workplace recovery facilities. Sungard AS remained flexible, ensuring customers had what they needed given the shifting circumstances. At its height, Sungard AS allocated 8,000 workplace recovery positions in 40 locations globally for customer use, with plenty of additional capacity remaining.
Sungard AS quickly facilitated IT infrastructure projects, such as moving workloads to the cloud, to ensure customers were able to keep operations running as they shifted to large-scale remote work. In addition, Sungard AS offered extra processing capability, which was invaluable for financial institutions needing to process PPP loans.
At every turn, Sungard AS accommodated the needs of customers without interruption as circumstances changed. Sungard AS’ preparations allowed it to offer customers reliable service and, more importantly, peace of mind. Between supporting data center infrastructure, managing business recovery strategies, and performing other day-to-day support and operations, Sungard AS put itself in the best position to serve its customers and employees during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Some examples of its accomplishments:
- Sungard AS regularly tested its pandemic plan, allowing it to maintain operations without fail when COVID-19 arrived, delivering customers the services they depend on.
- The proactive and early response enabled Sungard AS to provide additional resources to customers, including workspace, processing capacity, operational support services and more, without sacrificing day-to-day operations.
- Sungard AS went above and beyond to support customers, including donating and delivering over 15,000 N+95 masks and additional PPE to healthcare workers.
- As customers began looking toward the future of reopening offices, Sungard AS guided them in creating effective return-to-work plans to ensure workplace safety and business continuity.
For its efforts, Sungard AS’ Data Center Operations team won a Bronze award in the 2020 SVUS Sales & Customer Service Awards (@svusawards) for providing outstanding customer support throughout the pandemic. Their preparedness, hard work and flexibility allowed them to provide unparalleled customer service and support throughout the pandemic.
While we’re not completely out of the woods with respect to COVID-19, Sungard AS’ early preparations led to uncompromised services and additional customer support – in other words, a reliable guide through the highs and lows of unchartered territory. For more information on how you can prepare your business for post-COVID-19 workplace recovery, download our white paper.