On February 28, 2020, the first COVID-19 case was recorded in New Zealand. As in much of the world, life began to change in ways nobody could have predicted.
“We moved very quickly into lockdown,” said Andrew Coster, Commissioner of the New Zealand Police (NZP).
Commissioner Coster and the NZP had a pivotal role to play in the country’s COVID-19 response and needed to rapidly transform the way they communicated and got things done.
By leveraging Webex, New Zealand Police were able to disseminate critical information and respond to incidents in real time, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
“Right away we had to rely a lot more on technology for communication,” Coster said.
NZP’s Chief Information Officer Rob Cochrane echoed the sentiment: “The pandemic challenged us to think differently. We didn’t have a choice.”
With funding from Cisco’s Country Digital Acceleration (CDA) program, the NZP force was able to thrive in a growingly uncertain environment. “Having the right support and focus from Cisco allowed us to do more than we even thought we were going to do,” Cochrane explained.
Webex empowered NZP to significantly scale their communication. In the eight months pre-pandemic, NZP estimated that it conducted approximately 130,000 minutes of Webex Meetings. “In the first four months of the pandemic we conducted nearly 900,000 minutes of [Webex] Meetings, with 100% uptime,” Cochrane reported.
Besides giving them the right solution for remote collaboration, NZP also realized that Webex made their daily morning meetings much more efficient. “We used video conferences for our daily start-up meetings to connect, and instead of wasting the better of part of 20 to 30 minutes getting organized, we do it via Webex and were done in five to seven minutes,” Coster said.
The force started to rely heavily on Webex, not just for daily meetings but to connect all day, every day, at any time. “Knowing that it is secure certainly gave me peace of mind as Chief Information Officer,” Cochrane said. “Webex was a vital piece of technology that we needed to get the job done.”
Besides providing secure, scalable, and sophisticated technology that was critical for New Zealand’s pandemic response, the Webex team offered support and partnership that really stood out to the NZP force.
“The commitment and collaboration to work with our department, to help us be the best that we can be, has truly been outstanding,” Cochrane said.
Get your free Webex account today to see how you can take your organization’s collaboration to the next level with the all-in-one solution to call, meet, message, and get work done.
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