The world has seen various pandemics in the last century, such as influenza, H1N1, H2N2, H3N2, and many more. Though the world has fought them towards victory, it was not for free. It took hundreds of millions of people as casualties who died due to severe infections caused by these diseases. Now again, a deadly virus, known as Coronavirus or COVID-19, has emerged that is rapidly spreading throughout the world.
The rapid spread of the COVID-19 outbreak is presenting unparalleled challenges globally. There are currently over half a million people who have been infected by this fatal virus worldwide. Fortunately, around a hundred thousand people have also recovered from this disease. Currently, no country has come up with a valid solution to create a vaccination that would eradicate this disease from the world.
According to recent observations, it has been proved that the spread of this virus is directly proportional to a person’s immunity. If a person has a low immunity level, the virus will infect the most, and if a person has a high level of immunity, then he/she has lesser chances of getting infected. This is the reason why children and elderly people have more chances of getting severely infected by this virus as immunity levels in children and elderly people are quite low as compared to the people who are aged between 20 to 40.
Basic Symptoms of Coronavirus
Some of the basic symptoms of coronavirus infection are cough, fever, tiredness, and difficulty breathing. It takes around 1 to 14 days for a person to develop symptoms, which means by the time a person develops symptoms and goes to the doctor for further treatment, he/she has already spread this disease to a hundred more people who came in contact with him/her that might include children and elderly people.
The Effect on Businesses
Coronavirus has not only affected people’s health status but it has also affected people’s financial status. As the rate of spread of this virus is very fast, the countries around the globe have been locked down, which means every shop, every business, whether small or big, has been shut down except for essential businesses like hospitals, pharmacies, and grocery shops.
All big tech conferences and events such as Adobe Summit, Apple WWDC, Salesforce Connections, Aruba Networks Atmosphere 2020, Atlassian Summit 2020, Black Hat Asia 2020, CanSecWest, Cisco Live, and many more have been either got canceled, postponed, or has gone virtual just to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
As the number of confirmed coronavirus cases continues to rise, exceeding 350,000 on 23 March, entrepreneurs, businesses, and multimillionaire philanthropists are pledging their support. From Salesforce to Amazon, big names in the world of business are helping in the fight against COVID-19.
Updates on Salesforce Safety and Wellbeing Actions
Salesforce’s response to this pandemic has been tremendous. Salesforce has taken a number of steps to support not only the people who are suffering from this disease but also its employees, customers, partners, contractors, stakeholders, and small businesses.
Salesforce’s efforts include:
- Started a coronavirus aid fund, which is called the Give2SF Fund with $1.5 million from Salesforce.
- Building a COVID-19 Resource Page: Tracking the Virus Through Actionable Data.
- Donations to research into COVID-19.
- A commitment to continuing paying the hourly workers employed by its vendors.
- All the employees around the globe have been strongly encouraged to work from home. A wide-ranging initiative to communicate openly and extensively with all employees.
- Made some of their technology available for free for a period of time to help their customers and partners navigate through the crisis.
- To better support the Trailblazers during this time, Trailhead made some important updates to the Salesforce Certification program that will hopefully help ease their concerns around maintenance, exam rescheduling, and online proctored exams.
- Launched the AppExchange COVID19 Resource Center, a dedicated resource to support employee, customer, & community needs during the COVID-19 crisis with applications built by partners & Salesforce Labs, as well as informative content.
On March 11th itself, Salesforce Chairman and CEO Marc Benioff announced to support the world’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak, Salesforce is offering a COVID-19 Response Kit that offers free access to technology for coronavirus-affected health systems, emergency response teams, call centers and care management teams. Salesforce plans to provide some essential services to these healthcare systems for free for a period of six months and after six months the customers will have the option to choose whether they want to continue the services or not.
These services include:
- Salesforce Health Cloud: driven contact center solution helps companies handle increased volume via phone and chat.
- Salesforce Shield: delivers encryption, audit trails and monitoring to help organizations ensure the privacy and security of their data to meet both internal and external compliance requirements like HIPAA.
- Salesforce Community Cloud: enables organizations to proactively distribute trusted information from a personalized, self-service resource center to help inform patients, members and communities and help offset the higher call volume to contact centers during this pandemic.
- Salesforce myTrailhead: helps organizations quickly distribute the latest safety and testing protocols to enable staff and ensure certification through an on-demand, learning experience platform.
An Update on Connections and Upcoming Salesforce Events
Due to the COVID-19 situation continuing to evolve, Salesforce has decided there will be no physical event for Connections and they will instead reimagine the conference as a virtual experience that will deliver a full program of inspiring sessions and educational content.
Salesforce.org’s Higher Ed Summit as well as Salesforce World Tours and Basecamps in April will also be replaced with new virtual experiences. World Tour Toronto and World Tour London will be postponed to later in the year.
Stay Safe. Stay Strong. Stay Home.
Certainly, these steps are designed to protect the employees, customers, and partners, but we also know that the steps Salesforce has taken are helping our society. These preparations are important on an individual level but they can also have an impact on our society, such as our elderly neighbors, our hospital caretakers, and those who lack the resources or time to prepare themselves, all of whom may be counting on us during this time.
Our hearts go out to everyone impacted by the COVID-19 virus — particularly those who are sick, and their families. Let’s pray for their well being and take a pledge to stay at home until we fight this pandemic. Stay Safe. Stay Strong. Stay Home.
References: Salesforce, weforum, cloudwars