Continuity plan rolled out
Amid fears about the coronavirus, the Guardian Group has initiated its business continuity plan as it seeks to keep employees safe, while still meeting the needs of customers.
President of Guardian Life of the Caribbean Limited, Anand Pascal, in a telephone interview with The Barbados Advocate from Trinidad earlier this week, said that they have adopted an approach where more than 60 per cent of the staff are able to work from home. He said there are approximately 500 employees and 650 agents, under his purview.
“We do have some rostering going on within our offices to man critical functions that may not be able to be easily done remotely. As in the case of Barbados, what we identified is that we needed to get access to more laptops to get more people to work from home. But we couldn’t get access to it in Barbados, so we today [Monday] are couriering across to Barbados, so staff can work remotely,” he stated.
Pascal added, “Our plan is quite comprehensive in terms of how it co-ordinates all of those underlying issues.”
The insurance executive, whose office has responsibility for nine of the 24 jurisdictions within the Guardian Group, said that at this time, given how quickly the virus can spread and the impact it can have on the health of persons, that it is imperative that persons follow the advice and direction of the public health officials in their respective countries.
“It is really critical that we make sure that the vast majorities of our population practice the directives of the public health authorities in order to minimise the risk of transmission. This unfolded very quickly from a global phenomenon, it is now beginning to unfold in the Caribbean and if we use the recent past as evidence, a lot of this is really based on the geometric progression of infections. So if you see what is happening globally, you can almost impute what might happen here in the Caribbean region,” he stated.
“Maybe if we are able to implement some of the measures required as a Caribbean region, we may be able to steer ourselves of the worst,” she said.