With the number of deaths now approaching 2,000 and the number of people infected currently sitting at more than 71,000, coronavirus looks set to remain a global health crisis for the foreseeable future. This Global Health Emergency, as confirmed by the World Health Organisation, has seen many displaced or contained in China and across the globe.
Governments and health officials around the world — particularly those in the Far East — are wrestling with ways of slowing the spread of the virus while retaining some sense of normality for their citizens.
Travel restrictions — whether dictated as a legal requirement, advised by governments or self-imposed by individuals — have already been key to preventing an even greater number of infections. But prolonged periods of immobilisation, isolation or quarantine for large numbers of people will have inevitable consequences for government agencies, businesses, educational institutions and other organisations. It's already predicted that there will be a negative effect on the sale of goods from China with trade bodies recommending that suppliers have procurement contingencies in place.
Any organisation that is dependent on gathering a large number of people in one place will already be seeing the impact of travel restrictions related to coronavirus. Again, that’s particularly true in the Far East, but also applies to international business events and training worldwide. The challenging nature of a global health crisis was witnessed recently after GMSA cancelled Mobile World Congress 2020 amid travel concerns surrounding the Covid-19 outbreak.
Against that backdrop, there’s a need for organisations to move much of their learning, meeting and conferencing online to reduce the need for people to gather in colleges, exhibition halls and conference centres, as well as limiting their need to travel by aeroplane or public transport to attend such events.
Coronavirus contingency planning
Some of our clients realised very soon after the outbreak of coronavirus was initially reported that it was going to have huge consequences for their operations, and were quick to get in touch with us to start contingency planning.
For some of those with an existing eLearning platform, the process has been about increasing the number of services that they are able to provide remotely via the platform. Lectures, seminars, meetings and conferences that would previously have taken place in person are being moved to eLearning environments.
For others, who were largely dependent on ‘real world’ meet-ups, there has been a scramble to plan, develop and launch an online equivalent in order to minimise disruption to the services they provide.
Due to our partnerships with some of the leading remote learning and blended learning platforms, we can quickly develop a bespoke LMS platform for our global clients or develop a number of changes to an existing LMS to allow remote learning. In a fast moving situation like the Coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak, that flexibility and speed is very useful.
Keeping organisations operational
By improving or tweaking eLearning provisions, our clients have been able to:
- Avoid contributing to the spread of coronavirus.
- Ensure the continuation of courses, conferences and other events in the face of travel restrictions.
- Reach people who would otherwise be too worried about travelling to events in person.
- Put in place platforms and processes that will streamline their activities throughout the coronavirus outbreak and beyond.
That has helped to minimise disruption to international commerce; avoid unnecessary hardship to those enrolled at educational institutions impacted by coronavirus; and preserve the job security of people employed by organisations that would otherwise face a severe financial effect from coronavirus. We provide a way for organisations to deliver training and education in a way that fits their structure and most importantly the world around them.
Our thoughts continue to be with those affected around the world.