This week, we feature a guest post from our Group Head of IT, Martin Abbott. We are grateful to Martin and his team who have done an exceptional job at ensuring the Brady systems have worked seamlessly while we’re all working from home and has enabled us to Be Close with each other and our customers.
Guest post by Martin Abbott, Group Head of IT at Brady:
The last several weeks have been the strangest in my lifetime and has affected the lives and livelihoods of everyone across the world. We are all fighting this together though, and we try to keep in our own routines as best we can in order to keep going. That may be going for that bike ride before starting the day in front of your computer or that first cup of coffee before taking on what the inbox has to throw at you.
So how have we been able to keep the lights on at Brady whilst many organisations have ceased or paused during this time? Preparation is the key for such an event. The business continuity plan that IT, HR and Legal have all been working on over the past couple of years has been integral. This plan was designed to prepare Brady for even just a small outage in a single office to a whole global lockdown. We have all had to adapt very quickly in a personal manner under these circumstances.
When I started at Brady on the 3rd April 2017, I could see two fundamental changes that needed to happen; the first was our telephony systems, they were so very different in each office and this needed to change from a supportability position. The second was having different internet firewalls across offices leading to engineers spending too much time maintaining them. By replacing our office communications and connectivity to cloud based solutions we were no longer tied to our office chairs and could easily work from anywhere in the world within reason.
Collaborative technologies have dramatically improved in recent years if not months and I’m fortunate at Brady that people here are tech hungry. We’re able to roll out new functionality swiftly and users adapt quickly to embrace the new versions of tools. Microsoft Teams is a great example of this, not only did it replace various tools for meetings but it’s also a huge leap forward for users enabling them to work on various tasks collaboratively, it’s the next best thing to be being face to face.
I feel my team has never worked as closely during a period as now and it’s because of this that we’ve been able to react and support the business needs to a great standard. We’ve certainly had our challenges such as the ability to source new equipment from our suppliers for new joiners. For us the fact that we’re hiring during this period and needing to buy equipment must be seen as a positive and we have so far been able to deliver on that.
To this end I’m extremely proud of my team’s hard work. I’m also indebted to the support of all the teams that have helped put this in place.