Telkom’s plan to protect employees from COVID-19

Telkom has provided information to its employees regarding how the company will deal with the COVID-19 coronavirus – which will include work-from-home protocols and free testing for all staff.

In an email sent to staff and seen by MyBroadband, Telkom CEO Sipho Maseko said the company has already formed a team to oversee Telkom Group’s response to the pandemic.

“Like other businesses across the country, we are looking at how to adapt to an ever-changing situation. We recognise that there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Therefore, I would like to encourage you to take the necessary measures to protect yourself,” said Maseko.

Limiting non-essential contact

Telkom said that the company will limit all non-essential contact with immediate effect.

It said all physical gatherings and meetings should be avoided unless absolutely necessary, including meetings with third-party contractors.

Telkom added that it has access to conference and video calling facilities, and encouraged employees to use these as a primary form of interaction.

The company is in the process of developing protocols which enable employees to work from home, or from remote locations, to reduce the contact employees have with each other.

Screening will also be implemented at all of its buildings to reduce the risk of infection of those who need to come into the office.

Other measures

Telkom said it will also make testing available to all staff.

“One of the critical ways we can contain the spread of the virus for ourselves and those dear to us, is to get tested as soon as we have been exposed to it,” said Maseko.

However, he added that the availability of screening and testing should not reduce the level to which employees practise social distancing and other preventative measures.

Finally, Telkom said that it will be paying its employees their salaries on Friday 20 March to allow them to prepare for the possibility of a lockdown.

“There is no doubt that the situation will get a lot worse before it gets better,” said Maseko.

“We are working with the government and the department of health to make sure that our decisions are based on the most updated information available.”

Maseko said Telkom employees would receive daily updates regarding the situation.

Telkom did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Now read: Telkom zero-rates educational websites due to coronavirus

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Telkom’s plan to protect employees from COVID-19