Yesterday, the World Health Organization formally classified the coronavirus (COVID-19) a global pandemic following weeks of concern about the rapidly growing health crisis, now being felt in more than 100 countries around the world. We recognize the health and safety of your employees is of paramount concern, and our thoughts are with the individuals, families and organizations being impacted.
As CEO of Lifesize, I too am deeply invested in the well-being and safety of our global team. Like many of our customers and partners, Lifesize has taken proactive measures to protect employees by instituting restricted travel policies and shifting in-person meetings and group gatherings to virtual events, changes that we are fortunately
able to easily accommodate via our video conferencing platform. Given the volatile nature of the situation, we are also encouraging all Lifesizers, as well as our customers and partners around the world, to follow the guidance provided by the World Health Organization, Center for Disease Control and other health authorities regarding how to best safeguard yourself and colleagues, minimizing the risk of exposure and further spread of the virus.
The Unexpected, Early Arrival of the Future of Work
As a 25-year veteran of the video conferencing industry, I have long believed in the power of being able to connect face to face with anyone, anywhere, at any time. Now, as large organizations, government agencies and thousands of small businesses in virtually every country ask employees to work remotely and minimize business travel, the entire video conferencing industry is experiencing an unprecedented moment where our promise to customers is being put to the test.
For the first time in history, we are collectively experiencing a global event which dictates that technology play a vital role in keeping the world working. We are seeing organizations rapidly adopt principles and policies from the oft-discussed ‘future of work’ — long before most had the opportunity to properly prepare for it.
As a technology provider that has worked closely with our industry for nearly two decades to help organizations embrace and get ready for these changes, we also know this is a moment when our technology takes on a greater purpose than that for which it was designed. In a time when so much is unknown, we are all longing for reliability, stability and connection.
That is the true promise of video, applied professionally and personally, in consumer life and for business. At its best, video helps connect people.
Coronavirus Response: Supporting Customers Through Unprecedented Change
At Lifesize, we want our customers — and any other organization struggling with these challenges — to have the ability to keep working effectively without complexity or compromise. It is our position that work is what you do, not a place you go.
We have heard directly from customers that are being asked to support hundreds of remote workers overnight. This rapid shift to remote, decentralized work comes with new questions and uncertainties, not the least of which relate to how to manage costs and ensure employees have access to tools required to remain productive and connected from their new virtual or home offices.
In response to this unprecedented need, starting immediately, Lifesize is offering free, unlimited video conferencing service to all global businesses for six months.
Organizations can provide access to an unlimited number of employees, who can host an unlimited number of video meetings with no time limits. Simultaneously, we are providing all existing Lifesize customers globally with six months of unlimited ‘oversubscription’ service to accommodate organization-wide deployments.
Let’s Keep Working Together
While there is much that we still do not know about the coronavirus and the global health crisis, we do know that we are better off working together to provide the best possible experience for our employees and our customers. As a technology vendor, our commitment is to continue doing everything we can to assist our customers and like-minded organizations that have a need for reliable, secure communications tools.
We encourage Lifesize customers to contact us with any questions or to review ways in which our platform can help keep teams productive, engaged and informed.