With the emergence and spread of COVID-19 in the United States and, in particular, within New York State, Novaworks has been planning and preparing to ensure that this event causes minimal disruption to the services and software we provide for our clients. In that vein and in the interest of transparency, we would like to share some information about how we are currently addressing this situation and what steps your organization can take to ensure you are also prepared.
Friday, March 20. 2020
The COVID-19 response falls in line with existing disaster plans developed by Novaworks. We have been adjusting the plan as necessary due to the fluid nature of the pandemic and as we receive additional direction and guidance from federal, state and local authorities.
Does Novaworks have a continuity of operations plan or a pandemic response plan in place?
Yes. We have both a general plan with detailed procedures and policies regarding any type of disaster or disruptive event, as well as a plan that contains information on the specific challenges caused by a pandemic event. Our plans ensure that we can continue our critical business functions in the event that:
- we have an increased rate of absenteeism,
- we are instructed by local, state, or federal authorities to run using only essential personnel,
- we are instructed by local, state, or federal authorities to close non-essential businesses.
Critical functions include supporting our current customers, providing software updates, and continuing software development.
What steps or precautions have you taken to mitigate the spread of COVID-19?
The health and safety of our employees and their families is of utmost importance to us. We have taken steps to educate our staff on COVID-19 and have implemented social distancing and increased handwashing policies. We also disinfect high risk locations (such as our break room and restrooms) and commonly touched surfaces (such as light switches and door knobs) daily.
Is there any impact to your location? – Updated
Yes. Monroe County, NY, where our office is located, has declared a local state of emergency. On Friday, March 20, New York Governor Cuomo issued an executive order for non-essential businesses to close their offices to workers, effective March 22. In compliance with this order, we have closed our main office and transitioned our remaining workforce to remote work.
We have no reason to believe any of our staff is at risk or has had exposure to the virus.
We will not conduct any on-site customer training or hands-on customer training until further notice. If you require training, we will continue customer training via webinar.
Our office will remain closed until further notice.
How will support be handled in the event your office must close? – Updated
As of Friday, March 20, our main office is closed due to an executive order issued by the governor of New York. Our support technicians and account representatives began working remotely on March 16, 2020. All personnel have access to phones and e-mail as normal.
We will continue to answer our main phone line (585 424-1700) as normal during our regular office hours (9am to 6pm, Eastern). You will be able to speak with a support technician provided all lines are not busy. If our lines are busy, the main line will be answered by an automated attendant. If such is the case, you can leave a message or try calling again.
There will be no change in e-mail support. Send all questions and issues to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please be aware that we may experience some diminished sound quality when receiving calls, due to variations in the bandwidth available to some of our employees. Our phone system is operating using encrypted VOIP protocols. Thank you for your patience and understanding.
Our office will remain closed until further notice.
Do you anticipate an increase in support? – Updated
As our clients are impacted by this event, we do anticipate that there may be an increase in support volume due to questions about deploying the software remotely. Because we are located in New York, we have been forced to work remotely as of March 22. This does not directly affect our ability to answer support calls but may decrease the volume of calls we can take at one time. We kindly ask for patience if this is the case, but we do not anticipate any significant delay in our response time. As always, we will be providing the highest level of support possible.
Are you issuing additional “emergency” keys? – Updated
At this time, no. GoFiler is very easy to move from one computer to another and also can be accessed using Windows Remote Desktop. Here’s some helpful information on how you can prepare to access GoFiler remotely:
- Moving GoFiler from One Computer to Another
- Accessing GoFiler Remotely
- Using GoFiler on a Terminal Server
We will continue to assess the situation for each of our clients on an individual basis. We will be able to issue keys, reset registrations, and assist you with any software registration issues throughout this event.
At this time, we recommend that our clients review their own plans and determine the best course method of deploying their software for remote access. Our support team will be available to answer questions, as needed.
We will be holding a webinar on Tuesday, March 24 from 11:00am to 12:00pm EDT covering methods of deploying GoFiler remotely for our clients. Register here.
Will there be any disruption for registering the software or installing updates?
Our licensing servers have a number of redundant systems that make it extremely unlikely that there will be any disruption to registration or installation. We have servers located in different geographic regions with automatic fallback to ensure that, should one server become inaccessible, a user of the software would be not experience any disruption.
Will there be continuing software updates?
Yes. We plan to continue with our normal update schedule throughout this event. Updates will occur monthly or as required by SEC EDGAR changes. Please note that the normal monthly update for March occurred earlier this month so the next regularly scheduled update will be in April. The process for updating your software remains the same.
Will software renewals and purchases be impacted? – Updated
No. All billing procedures will operate normally. For sales, contact our sales department by calling the main line and asking for sales or by emailing email@example.com. You can continue to send payments via mail to our main office as normal.
New software keys will be issued as they normally are.
Do you have a point of contact to address COVID-19 concerns and questions?
Yes. Please direct these concerns and questions to Scott Theis at firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line: “ATTN: Scott Theis, COVID-19”.
This article will be updated as necessary with additional information. Last Edited: 3/20/2020.