COVID-19: Interact response and guidelines
These guidelines outline our response framework to the COVID-19 (commonly known as coronavirus) outbreak.
Interact is committed to protecting the health and safety of our staff, customers and all associated partners, managing and responding to risk indicators as appropriate.
We also take our responsibility to serving our customers seriously, working to ensure business continuity and minimizing potential negative impact where it is safe and reasonable to do so.
These guidelines set out our position and response to the developing situation of COVID-19, commonly referred to as Coronavirus.
We have established a working group to closely monitor the situation and respond, where appropriate, to official guidance issued by the World Health Organization (WHO), Public Health England (PHE), Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), NHS or CDC and other trusted sources as it becomes available.
We will regularly update all employees of Interact on the situation and any necessary precautions to take as needed.
Response levels framework
We have established a four-tier escalation ladder (from phase 0 to phase 3) for response to changes or guidance that impact Interact offices.
The primary criterion for escalation is the number of community transmission events within a commute radius of any of our office locations. Response actions may change, depending on official guidance issued.
Our US offices are currently in Phase 3. The UK Interact offices are in Phase 1. These phases are detailed as follows:
Phase 0 triggers
Less than 100 instances of person-to-person virus transmission between people who are not close relative/living in the same house and outside of a hospital setting, occurring within the commuting radius of a given Interact office. Measured mortality rate remains 1% or above (10x the seasonal flu). Observed transmission rate remains above 1.5.
Phase 0 response
All Interact locations are currently classed as being at tier 0. At this stage, we are restricting all business travel to the following locations:
- Hong Kong
- South Korea
All other business operations continue as normal. Regular updates will be provided as and when that status changes.
Phase 1 triggers
More than 100 instances as above. Measured mortality rate remains 1% or above (10x the seasonal flu). Observed transmission rate remains above 1.5.
Phase 1 response
Remote working will be actively encouraged for Interact employees.
Phase 2 triggers: local containment failure
More than 1000 events as above or any government quarantine actions in the commute range of an Interact office. Measured mortality rate remains 1% or above (10x the seasonal flu). Observed transmission rate remains above 1.5.
Phase 2 actions
- Stop all inbound visitors to Interact offices
- Stop all outbound business travel
- Enforce work from home policy for Boston and London offices, as these are classed as non-business-critical locations
- Remote working for New York and Manchester locations will continue to be encouraged.
Phase 3 triggers: containment failure
More than 5000 events with an increasingly upward trend (doubling interval is 10 days of less). Measured mortality rate remains 1% or above (10x the seasonal flu). Observed transmission rate remains above 1.5.
Phase 3 actions
Mandatory work from home policy and continued work movement ban in all impacted areas.
Interact will continue to monitor and proactively respond to any changes in official guidance, updating our stated phases and/or response model as required. Additional locations for restricted business travel may be added accordingly.
As our response model indicates, we aim to continue with full-service provision for customers. If circumstances beyond our control result in an impact on business continuity that may interfere with this, we will communicate with customers to evaluate and manage the situation if or when it arises.