How the mission critical communications industry is adapting to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The full impact of COVID-19 will take years to quantify, but what it has done is highlight those industries which are the most essential to modern life.

The mission critical communications industry is one such area that has proven to be instrumental in helping to orchestrate the global response to this pandemic. Here is a look at the role it has played and the way it has adapted to account for the ever-evolving risks associated with the coronavirus.

Keeping frontline workers connected

Social distancing measures and full blown national lockdowns have been implemented in many parts of the world, yet it is still necessary for those who work in essential forms of employment to remain in place to avoid widespread woes for the rest of the population.

In particular it is emergency services workers and those in the police who have had little choice but to remain on active duty to provide assistance and support to literally billions of people in the wake of the pandemic.

Communication has been key, although of course it is still important for people who work on the frontline to take advice regarding social distancing into account where possible. Thankfully with mission critical communication devices such as radio earpieces and radio headset combos, this is far more achievable.

Frontline workers can communicate, collaborate and coordinate their efforts with large teams, operating across expansive areas and putting up a united front in the fight against this deadly virus.

This has proven particularly pertinent because local and national governments are having to reassign their frontline resources to cope with spikes in need depending on population density. Italy saw rural police assigned to urban duties, while the introduction of armed forces in certain areas has required unprecedented levels of cross-sector cooperation, at the heart of which are cutting edge communications devices.

Of course there are concerns that by moving frontline workers to flashpoints like this, their absence in other areas will be exploited. This is clearly a risk that politicians are willing to take as attempts to get the virus under control are ongoing.

Supply chain changes

Another of the biggest obstacles that the mission critical communications industry has had to encompass in the past few weeks is that of disruption to the supply chain caused by the almost staggered impact that the pandemic has had globally.

Originating in China, COVID-19’s spread initially interrupted the manufacturing industry in a way that left many thousands of businesses facing up to the prospect of product shortages.

While China may be getting back to businesses at the moment, the explosion of coronavirus cases in many European and North American regions has meant that it is not just a case of making sure that there are enough communications devices available to ship to those organisations that need them the most, but also that the process of shipping is not held up.

Advice to consumers to cut down on non-essential purchases, both online and in any bricks and mortar outlets which are still open, has lightened the load on the delivery and distribution infrastructures to a certain extent, although circumstances for getting items from suppliers to customers are far from ideal.

Then there is the need for manufacturers in the mission critical communications industry to enact their own policy changes so that employees can safely fulfil their roles without putting themselves or others at risk. As with many other industries, home working has been widely adopted, and fresh policies in factories and warehouses are being used to limit risks. As the pandemic wears on, this industry and its products will only become more vital.