As the COVID-19 coronavirus spreads, organizations are forced to adapt in real-time. Financial institutions are among those hit hardest with large numbers of their employees located in major metropolitan areas.
To reduce the risk of spreading infection, banks are beginning to split up their workforces. Citigroup, an organization of over 200,000 employees, did just that, sending thousands of their New York workers home or to redundancy sites.
Citigroup has also told employees to avoid international travel without prior approval from top executives.
Citigroup is not the only bank to take such measures. Morgan Stanley required attendees of their March 2nd technology, media and telecom conference to report on whether they visited China, Japan, Italy or South Korea recently before they could attend.
But as many organizations are realizing, dispersing employees to backup sites and home offices is proving to be a challenge. In most cases, off-site networks aren’t prepared for the volume of traffic required to sustain day-to-day operations.
High-level executives can’t afford to not be in touch. It is critical to the wellbeing of employees and the organization to ensure adequate connectivity, so that the right decisions can be made without disruption. To do so, financial services organizations must overcome the three key hurdles.
Ramping up residential and remote office bandwidth access
Most employee residences lack the bandwidth access necessary to carry on with day-to-day functions. Overcoming this challenge is not a simple one. Many homes are in remote areas or locations which are difficult to secure additional bandwidth. Furthermore, it can take a large enterprise between four and six months to get the legal paperwork in place to install new bandwidth services.
The best way to quickly gain access to upgrades is through an IT service provider who is able to bypass bandwidth upgrade delays through established relationships and service agreements in place with local cable and access providers to deliver bandwidth on demand.
The same applies to remote backup offices. With an IT provider, not only do you ensure access to additional bandwidth, but you gain access to a vast array of service providers who can advise you on everything you need to ensure you have sufficient environmentals to maintain a short-to-long-term remote office space.
Preparing for remote work with increased conference call capacity
For the foreseeable future, financial service providers are limited in their ability to send employees to meet with clients, suppliers, partners, or with each other. Therefore, increased bandwidth for conferencing services is a must.
Financial organizations should consider increasing the capacity of their undersea cable routes. By doing this, they’re able to access necessary conferencing service upgrades without experiencing a degradation in critical trading QOS that would likely occur without additional bandwidth.
Upgrading critical VPN capabilities
The average organization lacks global VPN access outside their main offices. As a consequence, they’re left scrambling to secure much-needed bandwidth between corporate offices and remote locations.
The problem is further compounded by a lengthy backlog: with Asian and European VPN access improvements delayed by at least sixty days – a number that’s expected to increase – companies should take steps immediately to upgrade their VPNs.
Fortunately, there are options. At AQUABLUE, we’re helping clients upgrade their VPN access on a daily basis. We have a vast supplier list that provides us with multiple options around the globe, allowing us to pick and choose a different service provider for each of your remote locations, if need be. This ensures you get the fastest VPN access possible, without having to rely on a single provider.
Need to get your IT infrastructure to respond to the impact of coronavirus? We can help.
Contact us today for your free consultation so we can help you right away.