Orange Business Services delivered teleworking in record time to ensure business continuity

COVID-19 has quickly spread across the world, adversely affecting people and businesses at an unprecedented rate. In some cases, companies have had only days to get large numbers of employees working from home. The mining industry is no exception.

Mining communities are often isolated, with workers operating in harsh, remote regions. Some have been able to continue working under limitations such as closed social spaces and heavy restrictions on fly-in, fly-out workers. However, the mining industry is also reliant on effective and predictable operations across its supply chain to minimize disruptions, which are typically handled by office-based roles.



The company has seen for itself how quickly Orange can respond in a crisis, going the extra mile to ensure business continues as normally as possible in an extraordinary situation.

 

Taking action to mobilize home working

With the virus spreading, Orange Business Services proactively offered to help this mining company mobilize its office-based workforce to work from home. At first the company did not see the urgency of the situation. But, as COVID-19 accelerated its grip, it quickly became apparent that home working would be inevitable to keep its employees safe and maintain any level of daily operations.

Orange had a very limited window to ramp up home working for the customer by 800%. The number of remote workers rose from a couple of hundred to thousands of employees, many of whom were not familiar with teleworking. In South Africa, for example, the company was only given two days’ notice before a total lockdown.

Increasing capacity

Increasing capacity quickly was key, and Orange upgraded the customer’s MPLS bandwidth in Asia Pacific within 24 hours. Orange also upgraded the Business VPN Galerie service from 200 Mbps to 1 Gbps in just 12 hours to quickly support the increased use of Microsoft Azure cloud. Business VPN Galerie provides the customer with secure access to Azure via the corporate Business VPN without traversing the public Internet. It gives users predictable performance when accessing cloud applications.

The company’s Azure cloud footprint is now primarily focused on remote access connectivity. To further support this, the Orange team also implemented Orange Business VPN Galerie in the UK and Singapore. Although this would normally be done in four weeks, it was achieved in just four days.

Employees use their corporate laptops to access Microsoft Teams for collaboration and Skype for Business voice hosted in Orange data centers. Using Zscaler Internet access, Orange has put restrictions on streaming, social media, and shadow IT videoconferencing solutions to ensure bandwidth is not impacted for key business applications.

Orange also used Zscaler to take some of the load off the Orange Flexible SSL platform by switching on private access for the 1,000-employee IT group in just five days. Zscaler and private access ensure that the IT group has access to multiple options and always has access to applications essential for running the business. Orange is providing a fully managed service for Zscaler and security for the Internet gateways.

Spotlighting flexibility

The company has changed its perceptions of Orange in this unprecedented home-working project and recognizes its flexibility and adaptability. It has seen for itself how quickly Orange can respond in a crisis, going the extra mile to ensure business continues as normally as possible in an extraordinary situation.

800% increase in working from home