May 29, 2020


Connecting People

How Telus International addressed remote work challenges

At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Telus International made use of Google Cloud — and the solutions hosted on it — to address remote work issues for its employees.

The organization, which offers connect with center and digital IT solutions and is a subsidiary of Canadian telecommunications company Telus, has about 55,000 employees all over the world. Less than 500 of its employees worked from property when the outbreak very first started off, forcing the organization to established up new alternatives to accommodate remote work. At present, extra than thirty,000 Telus International employees now work from property.

Telus International CTO Jim Radzicki reported the organization, in reaction to the crisis, was ready to execute “22 in 22.”

“We deployed 22,000 people working from property in 22 times,” he reported. “It was a pretty fast, rapid deployment for us.”

Jim Radzicki

Radzicki reported the business utilized Google Cloud to go on operations, working with these kinds of partners as Itopia, a desktop-as-a-service item and Google Cloud leading lover, and Thrio, a make contact with center-as-a-service service provider, to assure its workers ended up ready to continue to be successful at property. Telus International, he reported, experienced a preexisting partnership with Google, relocating numerous of its operations to the Google Cloud Platform (GCP) decades back.

“Fundamentally we have been a cloud business for really some time now, leveraging Google practically totally in that feeling,” he reported.

Onset of the crisis

As a world-wide business, Telus International observed the outcomes of the coronavirus as it distribute all through the earth.

“It truly started off to come about location by location,” Radzicki reported. “The very first instance I recall was the Philippines procedure, exactly where they truly reported, ‘Hey, we’re locking down.’ It was one particular of the very first ‘stay-put’ orders that was put in place.”

That order, Radzicki reported, spurred Telus International to get forward of the circumstance as much as attainable. He reported the company appeared to its partnership with Itopia to deal with remote work issues and was ready to deploy a completely configured digital desktop surroundings in 24 several hours.

“We established up the zones all around the globe — seven GCP facts facilities throughout the globe,” he reported. “We spun them up in a pretty quick period of time, just to get it up and running. We started off relocating some of the inside folks on to the method, and some of [our] consumers on to the platform.”

The overall flexibility of the cloud has verified handy in the course of the pandemic, Radzicki reported. As general performance is far better when a facts center is nearer to an employee, he reported, the skill to established up facts facilities all around the earth has been beneficial for the firm’s consumers.

In the early times, Radzicki reported, it did verify hard to assure connectivity throughout all areas of the globe. Telus International, he pointed out, operates in numerous international locations, and the high-quality of the readily available infrastructure can vary.

“We … experienced some people running these solutions off an LTE card, off their telephones,” he reported.

This kind of situations, Radzicki reported, intended standard problems with mobile networks — like service interruptions — ended up drastically heightened.

“It really is not just an inconvenience now — it can be impactful,” he reported.

Around the weeks, the organization has been ready to ameliorate some of these remote work issues by having a broader feeling of which employees have substantial-speed internet capacity at their properties.

Keeping operations, looking ahead

Despite the fact that the organization ensured employees could work from property, Radzicki reported, its endeavor was by no usually means finished.

“Now, it can be truly critical for us to basically perform effectively,” he reported. “We realized it was critical to reengage with all those employees that are working from property as effectively.”

Radzicki reported Telus International nonetheless experienced to glimpse at the interactions employees experienced in the workplace — like one particular-on-one particular discussions, coaching sessions and instruction — and ascertain how to produce them in a remote surroundings. To that conclusion, he reported, the organization has been utilizing program like Google Hangouts and Google Classroom to simulate in-individual exchanges as much as attainable.

“I consider it was a Tuesday when we sent [one particular team] property,” he reported. “By Friday, they presently experienced ‘Dress up Friday.’ They ended up sharing, more than their Google Hangouts sessions, what their property workplace was like, they experienced bow ties on — all the items that they would check out to do in the common workplace surroundings.”

There are definitely appealing issues forward, Radzicki reported.

“Planning for what the long term is going to glimpse like has surely been the extra tough circumstance to get a deal with on,” he reported. “Nobody has a crystal ball.”