Irish businesses too windy in a storm

More than enough technology available for smooth operation of remote working

If Ophelia is to leave any positive legacy, it should be to shine a distinctly unflattering light on the lack of a proper online presence for so many companies and other organisations

If Ophelia is to leave any positive legacy, it should be to shine a distinctly unflattering light on the lack of a proper online presence for so many companies and other organisations

 

There’s nothing like a hurricane to rigorously roadtest an organisation’s crisis management structures. On Monday, for all too many businesses, crisis management amounted to little more than “close the doors”.

Business and insurance groups will spend the next couple of weeks calculating what the financial cost to the economy is both from the physical damage wrought by the storm formerly known as Hurricane Ophelia and from the loss of earnings as businesses and large parts of the apparatus of state shut down for the duration.

But companies, and a number of State agencies too, would do well to assess for the future just how efficiently they can continue serving their customers even if their bricks and mortar operation is forced to close down.

Remote working is not a new concept and, with wifi, smartphones and encrypted closed systems, there is more than sufficient technology available for its smooth operation. Media companies, among many others, use it all the time.

Dublin’s Silicon Docks may have fallen silent during the storm but Facebook, Google et al had arrangements in place and no difficulty in telling staff on Sunday night that they could work from home.

Routine operations

However, many others were apparently unable to carry out some perfectly routine operations once staff were sent home from their offices, or were advised not to come in at all.

Whether you wanted to order contact lenses, talk to your lecturer or get access to regularly available market data or a business report, the answer too often yesterday was that it could not be done because “the office/shop is closed”.

If Ophelia is to leave any positive legacy, it should be to shine a distinctly unflattering light on the lack of a proper online presence for so many companies and other organisations.

Remote working is no longer cutting edge. Being locked out of the office really should not mean an enforced day off work in this day and age. As business starts to clean up in the aftermath, many need to focus on more than merely the physical scars the storm left behind.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.