And the global outbreak of the new Coronavirus continues to have an effect on all aspects of world life – including technology. Amid rumors that WWDC could be canceled (Google I / O has already been), the Bloomberg reported today that Apple has taken further steps to prevent the spread of the dreaded virus.
More specifically, the Apple suspended indefinitely all travels of employees to Italy and the South Korea, two countries where COVID-19 it has spread at a more worrying frequency; Apple had already suspended all employee travel to China, considered the epicenter of the outbreak. Now, to go to any of the three countries for the company, the employee in question must have “critical business reasons,” and the trip must be approved by an Apple vice president.
To offset the constraint, Apple is encouraging its employees to prioritize virtual meetings and use the means provided by the company, such as audio or video calls. In an email distributed to employees and obtained by Bloomberg, Apple said the following:
There are many ways to continue holding your meetings and activities through calls and video. If you have planned trips, we suggest that you work with your managers to consider postponing or canceling plans that can be extended or carried out through virtual meetings.
And that is not all: the company also started to apply “Deep hygiene protocols” in their offices, stores and other spaces, according to the report. This includes comprehensive instructions for employees on how to wash their hands more efficiently, as well as recommendations for avoiding touching the faces and covering them when coughing. Alcohol-gel dispensers were installed at store entrances, too.
The company also instructed its employees to take sick leave if they suffer from any of the virus’s symptoms, especially fever and severe cough. Prevention, after all, comes first.