New York state has perhaps been the worst hit region of the US during this Coronavirus pandemic. With rising death rates – higher than many countries –Cuomo drew attention to the potential that crises possess to spur on innovation, urging us to consider not just a ‘reopening’ but a ‘reimagining’ of society, one in which technology is fully utilised for the protection of people and the economy.
‘Sometimes it takes a crisis to wake people up’
Many of the fundamental safeguards of US working life came about as a response to serious crises. The Great Chicago fire, which blazed for two days and left 100,000 homeless, was the genesis for building fire safety legislation. The famous San Francisco earthquake of 1906 destroyed more than 28,000 buildings, and directly lead to the development of ratified building standards.
For a case study of how to properly respond to a pandemic, one must look to South Korea & Taiwan. These countries – deeply affected by the SARS virus at the turn of the century – learnt from the pandemic and instituted technology to protect the health & safety of their citizens. Not only did they have sufficient PPE, but they had the groundwork in place to stop Coronavirus in its tracks. They invested in technology that enabled accurate contract tracing and record of testing, meaning their lockdown was limited and economic stability looks likely. What can the UK learn from this?
Build back better
Businesses must learn from this first wave of the pandemic. With many looking anxiously to the time when workplaces and offices reopen, it is critical that they have the tools to prevent workplace outbreaks, which would devastate workplace continuity plans. Technology is immensely powerful in stopping the spread of the infection. At Emex, our software enables teams to accurately report and trace employees who are showing signs of infection, and give them the tools to work safely in isolation. Coronavirus has been a clarion call for all to pay attention to the importance of workplace health & safety, underlining the real economic effects of a poor management system can cause. Don’t get caught out.