After dramatic market reaction to virus fears on Thursday, many businesses adjusting to the “new normal” and staying open with the use of video conferencing. Yesterday, COVID-19 induced the worst drop in U.S. stock market value since 1987. It was the Dow’s fifth-worst day since the index was created in 1896. Fortunately, stocks are rallying this morning, the S&P and Dow were up 5% and the Nasdaq 5.3%.
The CDC is responding to an outbreak of respiratory disease caused by a novel (new) coronavirus that was first detected in China and which has now been detected in more than 100 locations internationally, including in the United States. The virus has been named “SARS-CoV-2” and the disease it causes has been named “coronavirus disease 2019” (abbreviated “COVID-19”).
Our firm, an Office 365 Enterprise User, employs Microsoft Teams for connecting remotely with our clients. Teams offers advanced and well-developed video conferencing features. Users can host high-resolution, 1080p calls with up to 250 attendees. This includes the ability to share screens and record calls. Users can also meet or collaborate off-site using Microsoft Teams apps for smartphones and tablets.
Our clients and colleagues do not need to have Teams installed. When we send out a meeting invite, there is a hyperlink to join which will automatically install the Teams plug-in application into their web browser. As a back-up clients are also provided the typical call-in telephone conference line as well.
In-Person Meetings Suspended
Our office has suspended in-person meetings for the next two weeks but will closely monitor guidance from the CDC to determine when it is appropriate to re-institute office meetings again.
In the meantime, video calling is an essential tool for connecting with our clients. It gives us an ability to make a visual, personal connection with the inventors, colleagues and even opposing counsels we work with. Every reasonable person has fears of where the virus will go, but at the very least, video conferencing can keep us connected for now.