Episerver COVID-19 Plan, Processes, and Policies

With our cloud-first initiatives and robust plans, processes, and policies, Episerver does not foresee any impact of the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak in our ability to continue to serve and support customers, partners, and organizations. Still, we are planning for the unexpected. Below you will find some of our most important efforts, continuously updated.

UPDATE (May 13, 2020 at 12:30 p.m. ET)

UPDATE (March 26, 2020 at 12:30 p.m. ET)

UPDATE (March 12, 2020 at 12:30 p.m. ET)

Episerver's COVID-19 response: Background

 

UPDATE (May 13, 2020 at 12:30 p.m. ET): Globally, governments are actively updating their COVID-19 policies as the situation develops. This means that countries, states and cities that have undergone lock-down measures are starting to look at relaxing some of those measures to gradually enable more physical accessibility while staying protected. Episerver continues to monitor events globally, as well as in the specific regions that we operate in, to take sensible, measured steps in responding to these government relaxations. As we take these steps, we will remain diligent to protect the health and safety of our employees, customers and partners. We have been fortunate as a company to have seen relatively little impact to the health of the majority of our employees, but it has only heightened our awareness and resolve to adapting our measures further to protect against the increase in cases and additional risks throughout these relaxation processes. 

Business Readiness: Episerver continues to report that there has been no material degradation of service availability since the institution of the work from home policy and throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Our work with Microsoft in particular during the exponential increased load on the EMEA Microsoft Infrastructure has enabled us to continue to limit their impact on Episerver's customers and partners globally. 

Work-from-Home Policy: In compliance with local regulations, Episerver's company policy is to expect all employees to work from home/remotely for the foreseeable future, and no earlier than the end of May 2020, and to encourage all employees to follow local guidelines at all times. That said, we are taking steps currently to execute a "soft re-opening" of our offices in some regions where local regulations allow for it - where risk analysis has returned favourable results and where local employees have agreed that the timing is right to re-open parts of the office. 

We are happy to announce that the first of these steps will be taken in our Hanoi office on 18 May 2020, where citywide 249 of 288 COVID-19 cases have seen individuals recovered (and only 17 new imported cases). However, in "softly re-opening" an office, this means that our own internal COVID-19 policies and measures have been enacted and education to staff has occurred (including, but not limited to social distancing, office reconfiguration, PPE equipment ordered and available, signage posted, cleaning regimens enhanced, travel arrangements made, staggered scheduling of staff, etc.) prior to doors being opened. In all cases, employees will have the option to continue to work from home for any reason for the foreseeable future. This "soft-re-opening" will only affect employees who decide that it is the right time to re-enter an office setting. 

We will continue to reassess, monitor and take the advice of local governments as to which offices qualify for a soft re-opening as well as be prepared to shut down an office completely (again) if there is any increased risk to our employees and staff. 

Travel suspension: all current Episerver travel is suspended/rescheduled through May 2020 at the earliest. We will review on a month by month basis on whether to extend or not. 

In-Person Event Cancellations: Episerver is continuing to suspend all participation at in-person marketing events until further notice. Preparations have been, and are being, made to host digital events in lieu of live events. 

Customer meetings: All previously scheduled in-person meetings will be conducted virtually, and we will continue this practice until further notice. 

Community: We continue to provision both public and internal resources to keep all Episerver employees, customers and partners as well informed of the developing situation as possible. Internally, Episerver has enacted dozens of novel and creative digital-only events to keep communication, morale and mental health at the forefront of importance and concern. Externally, we proactively packaged services that are free to use for our customers, partners and potential business associates to ensure that we support our customers any way we can, including services to help customers make their content more relevant, and free training for anyone that needs it. We continue to offer our assistance and guidance to ensure that we can enable our customers and partners to come back stronger.

UPDATE (March 26, 2020 at 12:30 p.m. ET): As the spread of COVID-19 continues with countries, states and cities taking lock-down measures, we at Episerver remain vigilant and adaptable to the situtaion at hand. While no employee has tested positive for COVID-19 yet, we are aware and are adapting to protect against the increase in cases and additional global risks. 

Business Readiness: Episerver is happy to report that there have been no material degradation of service availability since the institution of the work from home policy. We are working with Microsoft during the exponential increased load on the EMEA Microsoft infrastructure to limit their impact on Episervers customers. 

Work-from-Home Policy: Almost all employees are working from home/remotely until at least April 17, 2020, complying with all local regulations, and encouraging all employees to follow local guidelines. Our offices in New York, London, Sydney, Minneapolis, Chicago, Copenhagen, Utrecht and Helsinki have officially closed, with all employees working remotely. We will reassess nearer the date, and take the advice of local governments as to how long the policy should be adhered to. 

Travel suspension: All current Episerver travel is suspended/rescheduled through April 17, 2020 at the earliest. We will review closer to the date whether to extend or not. 

In-Person Event Cancellations: Episerver is continuing to suspend all participation at in-person marketing events until further notice. Preparations have been, and are being, made to host digital events in lieu of live events. 

Customer meetings: All previously scheduled in-person meetings will be conducted virtually.

Community: We have provisioned resources both publicly and internally to keep all Episerver employees, customers and partners as well informed of the developing situation as possible. Internally, Episerver is trying to foster a remote-based comradery through novel and creative digital-only events to keep communication, morale and mental health at the forefront of importance and concern. Externally, we are proactively reaching out to our customers, partners and business associates to ensure that we always adhere to our customer-centric ethos, as well as offering our assistance and guidance to ensure that we can enable our customers to do the best they can in such trying times.

UPDATE (March 12, 2020 at 12:30 p.m. ET): Episerver continues to monitor COVID-19 developments and will provide real-time updates to this page as needed. Now classified as a worldwide pandemic by the World Health Organization, Episerver has taken additional measures to protect our employees, customers, partners and communities through the enforcement of COVID-19 best practices.

  • Business Readiness: Unlike many industries, Episerver is fortunate our business can be conducted remotely. Episerver has already taken vigorous precautionary steps to test our business readiness, to prepare for the unexpected and keep our customers’ businesses moving.
  • Work-from-Home Policy: It is strongly recommended for all employees globally to work from home through March 27, 2020. IT has and will continue to work diligently with all departments and regions to support telecommuting logistics.
  • Travel Suspension: All current Episerver travel is suspended/rescheduled through March 27, 2020.
  • In-Person Event Cancellations: Episerver is suspending all participation at in-person marketing events until further notice. Preparations are being made to schedule digital events in lieu of live events.
  • Customer Meetings: All previously scheduled in-person meetings will be conducted virtually.
  • Community: Episerver employees, customers and partners can make a difference in this pandemic to limit exposure to others in the coming weeks. We must all take strong and decisive action to protect those around us, staying vigilant together.

----------

(Previously published information below, March 6, 2020.)

Episerver's COVID-19 response: Background

COVID-19 (widely known as “corona virus”) was first reported on December 31, 2019 in Wuhan, the capital city of China’s Hubei province. With person-to-person transmission, reported cases grew exponentially — as of February 26, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported more than 80,000 confirmed cases, of which approximately 2,500 are outside of China. Exposure to the disease onset ranges from 2 to 14 days, although other reports have stated this could possibly extend to a month. Symptoms have similarities to influenza or the common cold — fever, dry cough, and shortness of breath. Complications include pneumonia, respiratory distress, and kidney failure.

As of March 6, 2020, while the spread of COVID-19 has diminished in China, its growth in other parts of the globe, including Western Europe and the United States, has increased. Episerver has responded through continuous communication with employees, agents and business partners to ensure not just education on the matter, but also reinforcement of our business continuity plans, disaster recovery plans, and incident management. While we do not foresee any impact to Episerver’s ability to continue to serve and support customers, partners and organizations – because of our cloud-first initiatives and robust plans, processes and policies – we are still planning for the unexpected.

What is clear is that businesses need a secure, stable and scalable digital experience platform, whose tested BCP, disaster recovery, incident management, and ISO 27001 compliance is core to delivering that experience, more so than ever before.

Overview of Episerver policies

Despite the media reports and concern, we at Episerver are being vigilant while not panicking. Here are some of the highlights of Episerver plans, processes, and policies as a response to the outbreak of COVID-19:

  • BCP Planning: Through our ISO-27001 certification, Episerver has a continuously tested business continuity plan (“BCP”). This BCP includes support of pandemic situations, as well as linked to some processes stated below. This BCP is also broken out through all internal organizations, so each department has clear steps and guidance on how to respond when the BCP is activated.
  • Adoption of WHO COVID-19 best practices: We have not only distributed WHO guidelines to all employees but have also implemented all suggested changes. You can find more here.
  • Office Closure Testing: As part of our annual ISO certification testing, and BCP testing, Episerver has undergone office closure tests across all locations globally. The mandate of the testing is to simulate a circumstance where one or numerous offices would need to be vacated. While still continuously being focused on customer-centricity, we want to ensure that such events do not prevent us from supporting our customers nor impede their ability to service and support their customers. This testing also ensures we can and will always enable our customers to successfully drive their digital experiences seamlessly under any condition.
  • Work-from-Home Policy: Being a cloud company, our resources and infrastructure are planned to be available under any condition. This ethos extends to how our internal systems, processes and personnel are deployed, using cloud technologies throughout, enabling our ability to support customers regardless of the location of ourselves or our customers. As part of our annual BCP testing, we are continuously testing and confirming the ability of all employees to work from home, as needed. Critical infrastructure and support undergo routine testing of re-routing and remote support as well.
  • Employee Travel Risk Mitigation: We have postponed all non-essential travel in the near term, utilizing our teleconferencing technology platforms to supplement these activities. Further, we have banned all travel to any “hot spot” regions as defined by the WHO. Essential travel still requires the consent of the employee participating in such travel, as the health and wellbeing of our employees are of utmost importance.
  • Employee Health Risk Mitigation: As part of continuous communication and education of our workforce, we have increased access in all offices to cleaning supplies, face masks and hand-sanitizer.
    • Any employee who has reported or are seen to have any COVID-19 symptoms are requested to self-quarantine for a minimum of 14 days.
    • We are coordinating COVID-19 screenings for our employees, as needed.
    • We have rigorous physical cleaning of our offices and company spaces including wipe-downs for all office surfaces and facilities. We have increased frequency of physical cleaning and usage of appropriate disinfectant agents for doorknobs, lecterns, escalator handrails, trash receptacles, water stations, elevator bottoms, chairs, registration tables, and bathrooms.
    • We have displayed additional health advisories in all offices, including reminders of keeping personal hygiene high, provide notices on hand washing (e.g., wash all hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds) and minimizing physical contact.
    • We have a “No Hand-Shake” policy at the office or any event until further notice. The use of fist bumps, elbow bumps, virtual hugs, waves, and other mechanisms will replace the handshake at the moment. We have also asked for social distancing (i.e., stand a minimum of 3 feet away from people).
    • We are testing our emergency preparedness in each office, including adherence to all local health and safety considerations.
  • Marketing Events: For any low-risk marketing events we attend or host during the outbreak, we have mandated processes for employees, attendees, and support staff to follow. This includes:
    • We ask that all attendees and exhibitors evaluate their own health and that of those they are in close contact with. They must report to any Epi staff or event organizer if they feel unwell, and anyone they have come in contact with.
    • We will offer temperature screenings. Medical personnel will interview and quarantine the person if necessary.
    • There will be an isolation holding room with local event authorities on hand to assist as needed.
    • In regard to rigorous physical cleaning of the venue, we will require wipe-downs for all microphones and speaker monitors. Event staff will increase their frequency of physical cleaning and usage of appropriate disinfectant agents for doorknobs, lecterns, escalator handrails, trash receptacles, water stations, elevator bottoms, chairs, registration tables, and bathrooms.
    • We will display additional health advisories at any event, including reminders of keeping personal hygiene high, providing notices on hand washing and also minimizing physical contact.
    • We are re-enforcing with our event venues the necessity of extra diligence as related to food preparation and serving.
    • We will increase medical personnel and security on-site.
  • Continuous Monitoring: Led by our human resources department (“HR”), we at Episerver are continuously monitoring the situation to determine any additional steps and needs required. Our information technology (“IT”) department is taking the lead on BCP (physical location and infrastructure) testing, as well as ensuring the Work-From-Home policy is adhered to, workable, secure, and efficient.
    • We have logs and are tracking travel locations, duration and anomalies, for both personal and business travel of all employees. 
    • We are building a profile of all employees who have (in the last 60 days) travelled through the countries of China, Italy, UK, UAE, Iran, South Korea, and Hong Kong.

Conclusion

As of the publication date of this statement (March 6, 2020), we at Episerver have had no cases of COVID-19 nor any employees showing or reporting similar symptoms, and thus have not needed to take more extensive measures (e.g., office closures) However, we must continue to be vigilant throughout, and expect the unexpected. We are aware that there are many circumstances beyond our control, however we will be prepared to react, mitigate, and minimize impact as needed.

While we hope that this outbreak ends soon and does not cause long-term closure of our offices, our planning and processes are built for circumstances and situations that would extend for long periods of time.

Through our ISO Certification, BCP implementation, disaster recovery plans, incident management policies, and overall emergency preparedness, we at Episerver believe we have a tested plan to adequately respond to COVID-19, natural disasters, and acts of God that may occur.

Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact your customer success manager, Episerver support personnel, or compliance@episerver.com.