remote work

ONE telecommunications company is planning for an increase in traffic on both their full fibre and mobile networks in Trinidad and across the Caribbean as more and more companies are allowing their employees to work from home via technology amidst the deadly COVID-19 outbreak.

Liam Donnelly, general manager of Digicel Business, made the revelation at the American Chamber of Commerce of Trinidad and Tobago (AMCHAM T&T) webinar, on Monday on Technology and Navigating the Pandemic.

Donnelly said all Digicel staff are enabled to work remotely, which includes the 140-plus call centre agents.

“We are planning for a 40 per cent increase in traffic on both our full fibre and mobile networks in Trinidad and across the Caribbean. Our core and transmission networks have sufficient capacity to handle the growth and we have engineers monitoring growth daily.”

He said Digicel has a full comprehensive plan which includes:

•Full operational plan in place to ensure customers can be connected and any faults can be addressed.

•Flexibility on payments and maintaining services over past payment due date

•Notifying customers of our support readiness and resilience

•Providing technology such as MiFi devices, Collaboration tools and Conferencing tools across current platforms

•Official commitment letter to Government and actively working with regulator & partners on giving more to our customers with no additional costs.

Also giving his input in the webinar was chief executive officer of Massy Technologies InfoCom, Ian John, who said all employers must engage in proper education and awareness on the virus to disseminate to employees.

John said with regard to technology, businesses, in preparing for any possible outbreak should consider the following:

•Support resource requirements of alternative work strategy for critical functions, investigating possible additional options of technology services

•Expand teleconferencing capabilities within corporate facilities as well as remote locations as an alternative to travel

•Initiate and be prepared to support a virtual emergency operations centre.

•Ensure phone system has capability to transfer high numbers of calls to employees (e.g., call centres) in different locations.

In terms of implementing policies and procedures in light of a possible outbreak, John said employers must develop policies and procedures that will make it safer for employees to come to work, especially regarding hygiene practices following an outbreak of the disease.

Also, limited contact with the public and/or customers and vendors through changes in receiving practices, barriers or distance.

A question was asked to the panel on whether public servants benefit from the work-from-home policy, as in the public service most of the work is manual.

AMCHAM CEO Nirad Tewarie said unfortunately not all jobs are suited for remote work, but it is something that can be worked on in time to come.

Tewarie also highlighted the fact that when this pandemic is over the world will experience a much “deeper recession” and it’s against this background, he said, T&T government must act quickly and put proper measures in place, which will be good for business and making people lives easier.

“We are going to have to attract investment, the competition for reduce resources, is going to be greater and therefore we need to start thinking not just now, but beyond as a country and as a business community interacting with the government.”


GOVERNMENT has an $18,992 balance a $7 million loan it took in 1941 under the War Loan Ordinance of 1941.

It’s one of several loans the Government has with local financial institutions which amount to close to $50 billion.

WITH restaurants opening back up in the first phase of the easing of restrictions as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, people still do not have to venture out for food as there is an app that brings deliveries right to your doorstep.

DIGICEL mobile phones are in more hands and pockets than any other telecommunications company in Trinidad and Tobago and the Caribbean. But the company is facing a battle for its survival as it deals with declining revenues, increasing finance costs and what its directors refer to as “unsustainable volumes of funded indebtedness”.

IN THE space of 23 years, 40-year-old Nirad Tewarie has moved from writing the news to being the subject of business new reporting in Trinidad and Tobago.

The CEO of AMCHAM T&T since 2014 gave an insight to the Express Business on how his journey started.

LAST week, economist and commentaror, Vanus James pointed to some key indicators that T&T should look for in planning the economy after the worst of the Covid-19 experience.

Australian shipbuilder Austal has announced the successful launch of a high-speed catamaran built for Trinidad and Tobago.

On its website on Sunday, Austal said Austal Vietnam had launched Hull 397, a 94-metre high-speed catamaran for the National Infrastructure Development Company (Nidco) from the company’s shipyard in Vung Tàu.

Constructed in 20 months, the vehicle-passenger ferry known as the APT James, is the first vessel constructed by Austal Vietnam, following the official opening of the shipyard in November 2018.