It's hard to believe, but this marks the end of the 6th week of social distancing with the occasional trip out for groceries. In some ways, I am amazed at how self-sufficient I have become. Just as many of you are, I am also starting to get restless.
I've been closely following the guidance from the White House and many Governors regarding their plans to slowly reopen states for business starting in May. While many states are approaching this differently, what is clear is there will be an attempt to begin gradually opening businesses across the country using a variety of staged approaches.
What is also evident; this won't be a one size fit all. Larger cities such as New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago will be the last to start reopening.
Just as organizations rushed to deploy workers from home and temporarily close stores and offices, they will need to start planning for the reverse now. The caveat is the return will be much more fluid and drawn out than the initial rush.
Just as importantly, many organizations will be looking at the future of their business differently compared to pre-COVID-19. Retail may never be quite the same, and some sites will stay permanently closed. The change forces the question of what does my new normal look like and does the technology I have today support the future.
In many cases, it does not.
Optus has been working strategically with many of our customers and IT leaders this last month to look forward and rethink current technology deployments. Multiple days of work has gone into investigating options, gathering pricing, and implementing technologies that will strengthen the corporate network backbone of our clients.
For those who think the return will be a seamless return to the end of February 2020, I challenge you that you're likely mistaken. The world will be forever different, and many businesses will take a long time (if ever) to return to the ways of pre-COVID-19. I also challenge you to think about this return strategically and feel free to lean on Optus for assistance on any strategies regarding your connectivity. While most companies won't deploy new technology immediately, automation and cloud-based solutions will gain favor, and you must be ready.
In the last six weeks, Optus never missed a beat; in fact, we rose to the call time and time again when our customers needed us. We love what we do and are always here to help.