- Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella recently sent a motivational email to company employees about how the company is helping with the COVID-19 response
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella recently sent a motivational email to company employees and also published it in a LinkedIn post. In the email, Nadella shared his deepest thanks to each employee about the creative and collaborative ways that they stepped up to support the company and customers during the crisis.
“At the start of the year (which in some ways feels so long ago), I wrote on LinkedIn about the purpose of a corporation, using Oxford professor Colin Mayer’s definition of ‘producing profitable solutions to problems of people and planet’ and how our company mission is aligned to this concept. This rings true now more than ever, as we work to address the impact of COVID-19,” wrote Nadella.
Nadella added: “We are steadfast in our mission to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more. No one company is going to solve a challenge like this alone, and it’s going to take the private and public sectors working together to turn the tide on COVID-19. Our unique role as a platform and tools provider allows us to connect the dots, bring together an ecosystem of partners, and enable organizations of all sizes to build the digital capability required to address these challenges.”
And Nadella noted that it has been clear that software “as the most malleable tool ever created, has a huge role to play across every industry and around the world. Our responsibility is to ensure that the tools we provide are up to the task.”
Nadella also acknowledged that he is proud of how the company is adopting a first responder mindset across the company and working with so many customers on the front lines, including governments, health providers, schools, food suppliers, and other commercial customers.
“There’s no doubt that the workflow of our jobs is changing fast, with many of you doing so much of your work remotely for the first time, some while also caring for children at home. I myself am learning, as I’m sharing a home office with my two teenage daughters and juggling between their eLearning schedules and my Teams meetings,” explained Nadella.
“There is no playbook for this and having that deep empathy and understanding for each other’s situations is needed now more than ever. I’ve seen countless examples of colleagues across the company stepping up to meet this challenge – both the challenge of their own circumstances and that of their customers.”
Nadella added: “We’re providing critical infrastructure for the communities where we operate, and they are counting on us. Examples abound: In healthcare, our technology is being used for telemedicine, enabling user-intuitive solutions to share data and access critical information. St. Luke’s University Health Network in Pennsylvania is using Teams to video chat with patients most vulnerable to COVID-19.”
Microsoft released a new Power Platform template last week to help customers share information and collaborate during a crisis. This template has been installed by over 2,000 customers around the world. “Swedish Hospital and other local hospitals in Seattle are using Power Apps and Power BI to manage their bed count and inventory of critical supplies and share that information with others across the region. Johns Hopkins University has created an interactive dashboard to visualize and track COVID-19 cases in real time,” stated Nadella.
All the data Microsoft collects is available via a GitHub repository, and the solution is hosted by Esri’s ArcGIS mapping and analysis software on Azure. Another Microsoft partner, Blue Yonder is taking data from public health sources like the CDC and combining it with customer data to generate critical insights on how a customer’s supply chain could be impacted during the pandemic.
The CDC also launched an assessment tool built using Microsoft’s healthbot service. With artificial intelligence, the bot suggests the next course of action like contacting a provider or managing the illness safely at home for those who do not need in-person medical care. A number of other health providers in the U.S. and Europe are also using the service for fielding over 1 million messages per day.
Educational institutions, schools, and universities around the world are tapping into Microsoft Teams for remote learning. For example, a professor at the University of Bologna in Italy shared how the school moved 90% of courses for its 80,000 students online to Teams within 3 days. And an elementary school in Japan hosted the graduation ceremony on Minecraft by building its own virtual assembly hall.
When it comes to security, Microsoft is using its AI and human intelligence capabilities to stop attacks designed to take advantage of the people who are fearing the virus. In a recent spear-phishing campaign, attackers sent emails to look like legitimate supply-chain reports related to COVID-19. And Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection identified and blocked the attack in transit and shared signals with the Microsoft Defender service to protect customers.
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