Update: Vodafone response to Coronavirus
At Vodafone NZ we are monitoring the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) closely and continue to prioritise the health and safety of our employees, customers and wider New Zealand. We have a Business Continuity Plan (BCP) action group set up locally, and are working closely with our international colleagues in the Vodafone Group, to respond to the impacts of COVID-19.
As of today there are eight confirmed cases of COVID-19 in New Zealand – all linked to international travel – and no confirmed cases at Vodafone NZ.
We follow all NZ Ministry of Health guidelines and have been communicating regularly with our staff, contractors and suppliers regarding travel restrictions and precautionary measures. The policies that we have put in place for the protection of our staff include the following:
- all business travel restricted until further notice
- any staff that has returned from mainland China (not including Hong Kong and Macao), Iran, Italy and South Korea prior to Friday 13 March are required to notify their line managers and self-isolate for 14 days
- any staff that has returned from any international destination (with the exception of the Pacific Islands) from midnight Friday 13 March to self-isolate for 14 days
- any staff that has been in close contact with a person confirmed with COVID-19 or in close contact with a person in self-isolation due to contact with COVID-19 (whether or not this person is displaying symptoms) within the past 14 days are required to notify their line manager and self-isolate for 14 days. Note that close contact is defined as:
- living in the same household
- having been within one meter of the person for a period of 15 minutes of more
- having spent two hours or longer in the same room or another closed space
- all staff are required to take laptops and power cords home at the end of each day
- any internal or external Vodafone meetings/events involving greater than 50 people to be cancelled or set up to operate digitally
- a dedicated Sharepoint site has been created to host up to date information and direction for staff
- the level to which office sites are cleaned has been increased to include disinfecting all surfaces every 24 hours
- hand sanitisation stations have been set up in the foyer, lifts, and high-use areas of Vodafone’s offices, and additional soap dispensers have been provided in the kitchens
We have communicated our policies with regard to self-isolation in the points above to our suppliers, vendors and anyone entering Vodafone’s offices; requesting third parties use digital means of contact over physical contact wherever possible. Our processes also require that our suppliers demonstrate that their BCPs are documented, managed and tested, and we routinely audit our key suppliers’ responses.
If required, our BCP allows for all our people to work remotely, including contact centre and engineering staff. We have recently conducted a large-scale test of these procedures and are confident in our ability to shutdown our office sites if needed without affecting the service we provide to our customers. We have also provided our business customers with a Business Continuity Checklist for reference when creating their own BCP.
We are closely monitoring device supply levels, maintaining good relationships with our vendors and suppliers, and working dynamically to mitigate any supply delays that emerge.