For many years a variety of organisations of all shapes and sizes, in a wide range of sectors will have been formulating and testing their disaster recovery strategies, perhaps never imagining that the disaster that would trigger their implementation would be a global pandemic such as the Covid-19 virus that is now raging across the world.

The primary aim of any disaster recovery plan is to be able to offer ‘business as usual’ with as little interruption as possible; but is ‘business as usual’ really the sole requirement of our clients (and, indeed, our staff) - or is something over and above ‘business as usual’ needed in such unprecedented circumstances?

There have been some notable cases in recent days of several large companies aiming for ‘business as usual’ at seemingly any cost, badly misjudging the mood of their customer base and the wider public and creating a massive PR fail in the process which may have far reaching consequences. On the other hand, many have been able to adapt their offering to the fast-changing circumstances, even working with competitors to meet their customers’ shifting needs.

Whilst I have been enjoying a week of annual leave, our London and Dorset teams here at Morning Data were beginning their journey of working from home on a full time basis (for the time being at least), in addition to reaching out to our clients to offer our support as they too implemented their own disaster recovery strategies.

Of course, like many other companies in our sector, we’ve all been used to being able to work from home when required; but working from home full time during a global crisis is a whole new ballgame! Thanks to Morning Data’s agile and adaptable culture, being able to support our clients and continue regular work on our NOVUS product perhaps presented less of a challenge than ensuring the physical and mental wellbeing of our staff. Happily, colleagues were swift to recognise and act on the situation (supported by a proactive management team) implementing a series of imaginative measures. A new virtual ‘pub’ (aka Teams chat channel!) “The Stumble Inn” was operational almost immediately, which has been invaluable in providing support and much needed light relief.

Once the current crisis has abated, and retrospectives carried out, many lessons will have been learned – but perhaps none as important as the value of relationship, both within an organisation and with our valued clients and partners. Personally, I’m really excited about returning to the virtual office tomorrow, working on our fantastic NOVUS product, continuing to forge relationships with clients old and new, and yes - joining in with the ‘Virtual Tea Break’!