Telkom has recorded 57 positive coronavirus cases as of 20 June 2020, with 19 recoveries and two deaths.
Telkom said in its annual results presentation that it is putting people first and the company is, therefore, remaining on lockdown level 5.
It said it has invested in reducing the levels of exposure of Telkom staff and is focused on testing, case management, support, and counselling.
“How we act will, ultimately, determine our levels of exposure to COVID-19,” Telkom said.
Telkom’s COVID-19 response to create a safe workplace for employees Telkom includes:
- Deep cleaning buildings.
- Glass fittings for Telkom stores.
- Thermometers for buildings and frontline workers.
- Ongoing investment in quality masks, gloves and sanitisers.
How Telkom is managing increased demand
The COVID-19 pandemic is fast-tracking digital transformation in companies, where businesses need to quickly adapt or risk redundancy during the lockdown.
Telkom said it has seen a surge in fixed and mobile network traffic for its telecommunications services due to more people working from home.
The good news is that Telkom has a scalable network and enough redundancy to manage the increase in demand.
“The significant investments we have made in modernising the network, including fibre backhaul, have enabled us to carry more traffic on our network and provided a resilient system to support growing demand,” Telkom said.
Telkom’s mobile footprint capacity has been improved with the construction of new sites and increased radio capacity on existing sites.
The assignment of additional spectrum, on a temporary basis, also enabled the company to alleviate congestion in certain mobile sites.
In response to COVID-19, Telkom enhanced its broadband-led propositions across its customer segments.
“We took advantage of our existing copper network, where we launched broadband on copper services and utilised spare capacity ports to cater for individuals working from home,” Telkom said.
For the national lockdown, it scaled up its digital platforms as its stores were closed.
Telkom has also launched its business ecommerce platform, which allows business customers to purchase Telkom connectivity products online.
Telkom helping to fight COVID-19
To assist the government in its objective to contain the virus, Telkom set out many initiatives to help combat the effects of the virus on the economy and on society.
“We began developing the novel track-and-trace COVID-19 system, after partnering with the National Institute for Communicable Diseases, and donated 1,500 devices and data to the Department of Health to assist with track and trace,” Telkom said.
Telkom also zero-rated educational sites of institutions of higher learning and expanded free high school learning content through its BCXLearn platform.
The company further pledged R15 million and formed a disaster relief fund that supports the Red Cross in support of the frontline healthcare workers.
“Over and above this, we managed to convey the importance of contributing to the COVID-19 pandemic, relaying the detrimental effect it is having on communities, economies, and health systems,” Telkom said.