Lessons Learned from Italy’s Outbreak
This article was written by Yannis Tourcomanis, President – Continental Europe, Middle-East & Africa.
Companies will be defined by their response to COVID-19, especially during the height of the outbreak.
As such, our team in Italy has become an example of success for the whole group. Teleperformance Italy incorporated a blended approach with enhanced crisis management protocols that leveraged best practices and key learnings from Teleperformance in China. Our Central Steering Committee in EMEA applied those shared learnings, while also collaborating with local officials and community leaders on safety restrictions, requirements and policies.
Their leadership, agility, collaboration, spirit, and attitude played a critical role in keeping our employees safe, and protecting jobs. Despite the current backdrop of business disruption and market volatility, Teleperformance remains steadfastly focused on what matters most. Our people.
Employee health and safety remain our top priority -- pre-pandemic, now, and once this COVID-19 storm has passed. We’ve never wavered from our mission to ensure that employee well-being comes first. Never, not even amid these extraordinary circumstances.
It’s essential that we stay true to our larger mission, and our corporate purpose. This is the main lesson we’ve learned.
So, I couldn’t be prouder to announce that Teleperformance Italy has just received ISO 45001 re-certification for elevated employee safety, reducing workplace risk, and creating better and safer working conditions. Always an achievement, this certification carries even greater significance during this historic health crisis.
The first country in the European Union (EU) to feel the intensity of COVID- 19, Italy has been greatly impacted. Also, the first region outside of China to experience a widespread lockdown to prevent transmission, Teleperformance teams rapidly implemented employee safety and protection measures, while maintaining client operations. As a result, many employees were quickly transitioned to a work-at-home (WAHA) model, while those remaining on-site were protected through extensive health and safety measures including:
- Health screenings for those entering a Teleperformance facility.
- Frequent and regular disinfection of common areas and workstations.
- Availability of health and hygiene supplies like disinfectants and alcohol solutions.
- Ample physical distancing due to significant on-site work force reductions.
- Extensive employee communications and updates
- Employee status surveys and individual attention to those with special need.
- Employee training on health, safety, and hygiene policies
For those unfamiliar with ISO 45001, it’s an employee health and safety standard first published in March 2018 by the International Standardization Organization (ISO). It has already been adopted by nearly 60 countries worldwide, including the vast majority of EU countries.
The goal of ISO 45001 is the “reduction of occupational injuries and diseases, including promoting and protecting physical and mental health.”
These topics are of greater significance today than ever before in the 40- year history of Teleperformance. Caring for people is in our DNA, and our employees represent the very heart and soul of our company. So, prioritizing their well-being isn’t just a business imperative. It’s the right thing to do as a conscientious employer, and as a responsible global citizen.
COVID-19 has challenged all of our paradigms – both as a global community and as individuals. Nothing forces us to revisit our priorities like times of adversity, and one thing remains clear. We’re all in this together and taking care of one another has never been more important.
Please, stay safe.