Airtel braces for COVID-19, as telcos gear up for the battle
The nationwide count for COVID-19 crossed 300 on March 21, even as authorities struggle to contain the outbreak that has claimed lives and affected millions of livelihoods.
In these testing times, companies are leaving no stone unturned to ensure the safety of their employees and customers alike and are doing their bit towards controlling the spread of the virus.
In a letter addressed to the public, Gopal Vittal, Chief Executive Officer, Airtel, said, “We, at Airtel, provide an essential service of keeping our customers and the country connected. There is a great responsibility on us, as connectivity providers, to do what it takes to make sure everything works in this time of stress. Therefore, we are doing everything we can to keep our employees and partners safe.”
With many employees working from home, internet networks are under strain. Airtel, which is India’s largest telecommunications service provider, is upgrading its quality of service and advancing investments to keep up with this spike in demand.
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Further, to minimize people-to-people contact, all mobile, WiFi and TV services provided by Airtel can be bought on the Airtel Thanks app or its website www.airtel.in. But in the event that you need to go to a store or call a technician home to attend to a technical bug, you can be rest assured of precautions being taken by Airtel.
“We are fully committed to ensuring that our employees and partners stay safe. For any Airtel employee that you may interact with – at an Airtel store or at your home – I want to re-assure you that we have taken all appropriate health and safety measures. We have not only stepped up sanitation and provided masks to all our field force, but are also taking proactive precautionary quarantine measures, as and where required,” Vittal added.
As more and more cities report cases and the country prepares for a lockdown, Airtel has also prepared a contingency plan in case a critical Network Operating Center or call center needs to be placed under quarantine. Employees have been grouped into smaller teams and virtual locations have been created. The same is being done for partners providing key service functions. These include tower companies, software providers, equipment vendors, and call centres.
“We have also reviewed contingency plans of all our partners to ensure that we are all coordinated and operate as a single unit. We will continue to assess the situation and take appropriate action so that you (customers) have no disruptions and can stay connected with your loved ones,” he further said.