Suzanne Hassett
2 Mins
March 13, 2020

COVID-19: Handling the situation as a fully remote company

Zyte (formerly Scrapinghub) is a fully distributed organization with a remote workforce spread across the globe. This structure will enable us to continue to operate at full capacity during the Coronavirus pandemic and deliver full service to our customers.

Businesses all over the world are trying to adapt to the new circumstances brought on by the Coronavirus such as being forced to implement a remote working environment while retaining productivity, a huge challenge for companies that normally don’t work remotely.

We have had a lot of queries from our customers, who are doing internal global risk assessments on their supply chains being affected by COVID-19 so want to share our continued commitment to providing our customers with ongoing services during this time while ensuring a safe environment for all of our employees.

Our internal risk models predict no more than 2% leave as a worst-case scenario, only slightly above baseline. This is likely to be offset by people deferring normal vacation leave due to travel limitations.

Zyte is at exceptionally low risk from any disruption in supplying our customers from the pandemic for two reasons:

1: Remote-first workplace

As a remote-first workplace, our teams are fully distributed. We don’t share office spaces and most of our teams work from home-office environments. With no exposure to co-workers or public transport, the infection risk is greatly reduced. This sort of remote working and social distancing practices other companies are rushing to implement have been business as usual for us since day-1. We do use some co-working spaces from time to time but have taken a step back from those in regions where COVID-19 is community spread. We occasionally have get-togethers but none are planned for the duration of the current pandemic.

2: Globally distributed workforce

As a globally distributed workforce, our risk is also reduced. Our workforce is spread across 28 countries, chiefly Europe, Asia, and South America. While some of the team in China are coming out on the other side of the Coronavirus disruption, others in South America live in countries that have yet to experience any cases at all. The geographic spread somewhat insulates us, as even a global crisis like COVID-19 impacts different regions in different ways at different times. Some of our developers located in China have already experienced significant local disruption and quarantines with no impact on their work.

“My work is not affected at all. Being able to work in a fully remote team is really a gift. I can do my work just like before, and I don't need to go out unless absolutely necessary. That makes me feel safe." - Team Member in Central China.

In terms of our own supply chain, our key input is a data center and cloud-based infrastructure. Businesses of this type are by its nature, relatively well insulated from supply chain disruption. Most of our data center services are located in the EU but we maintain relationships with multiple providers with a global footprint. Also, if the need arose, we could pivot some or all of our infrastructure to different regions.

We would like to offer support to our customers looking for advice on remote working or managing teams remotely as COVID-19 continues to disrupt business. Please reach out to your account or project manager for more information. We wish all our customers and partners a safe and uneventful experience of the pandemic.