The eMaint support team has worked hard to provide clients with world-class service, no matter what the circumstances, since long before the COVID-19 pandemic. During hurricanes, for example, Florida-based members of the eMaint support team have gone to safe locations and then worked remotely to ensure clients receive seamless service.
eMaint Support Team Manager Kyle Arrildt shared how the team has stayed safe in the face of hurricanes—while still helping clients keep things up and running. He has been through this process multiple times, including during Hurricane Irma in 2017.
“Once we start to hear that there’s a big one coming our way, we communicate out to our teams,” he said. In the past, team members have gone to stay in safe locations such as hotels outside of the storm’s path, the homes of relatives in other states, and more.
Though their surroundings and time zones may change, team members who have internet access are still able to work largely as normal. “We still use all our normal communication tools—Slack, emails, phone,” Arrildt explained. “Everyone takes their laptop, an extra monitor, or whatever they need to be able to work remotely.”
One of the most important parts of preparing for a hurricane is ensuring that all team members have shared their plans—whether that’s remaining at home or traveling states away. A spreadsheet with travel itineraries and multiple forms of contact information helps ensure that everyone can safely be accounted for before, during, and after a hurricane.
While people are traveling, some of their tasks can be handed off to others. Team members in other locations, including Everett, Washington, and Dublin, Ireland, have contributed extra efforts during past hurricanes to ensure clients don’t experience any service interruptions.
“We make sure that we have all of our core responsibilities accounted for,” Arridlt said.
“We do communicate with our clients,” he added. We tell them, ‘bear with us while our office is going through a hurricane—we are still here to support you.’”
After a hurricane, there are procedures in place before people are allowed to go back to the office. This includes a detailed building inspection. Once the building is declared safe, team members are free to return as soon as they safely can.
In some cases, Arrildt explained, that point “mostly depends on how soon the power is able to come back on.” In other cases, team members have had extensive damage to their homes or have been unable to travel back quickly. “That’s where it gets tricky, because you never really know what the damage is going to look like. But we work with people and help them get through it.”
In a variety of difficult times, the eMaint support team has shown the value in being creative, nimble, and dedicated.