Pronto Update - Bangkok Flooding and our Business Continuity Planning

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As you may be aware, Thailand and much of Asia is experiencing serious flooding due to a year of heavy rains. The Pronto Marketing offices are in Bangkok, Thailand and because we could be impacted by flooding over the next few days I wanted to bring you up to date on the situation at hand.

First a bit of background and context: Bangkok is located in the Chao Phraya River delta, near where the Chao Phraya flows into the Gulf of Thailand. Due to heavy rains over the past months, there has been flooding in much of Thailand to the north of Bangkok – close to 400 people have died and thousands are in relief centers as a result.

There is a massive system of dams, diversions, canals and other methods to control the water that flows into the Bangkok metro area. This year these systems are at capacity, and while outlying areas have been allowed to flood, the amount of water backed up is just too much. As a result the government is slowly letting more water flow through Bangkok’s canals and the Chao Phraya that all flow through the heart of Bangkok to drain this river system into the sea. As a result we’re seeing more and more flooding in Bangkok proper, which is expected to get worse over the next days, and perhaps weeks. The river in Bangkok is also impacted by tides – so there are some “perfect storm” scenarios; however, the more likely scenario would be 1-3 feet of floodwater in many areas, but nothing catastrophic.  At this point, no one really knows. Bangkok is a sprawling metro of close to 3,000 square miles and over 14,000,000 people, so while the situation will not be universal across the entire city, some areas could be hit very badly.

What does this mean for Pronto and your services with us?

100% of our critical business infrastructure is outside of Thailand. All of our business systems are cloud-based, and our hosting infrastructure is located outside of Thailand in major data centers in North America and Europe.  Our offices are on the 6th floor of a very secure, modern building. As a result we will not have any interruption with, or damage to our infrastructure, or any direct damage to our offices.

Because we’re a cloud-based operation we can work from anywhere and we are making sure that 100% of our team is ready to work remotely over the next weeks if need be.  If we could not access our offices for days, or even weeks, it would have little or no impact on our operations or ability to service our clients.

We are preparing a safe location outside of Bangkok for staff members that want proactively relocate at this time – and the remaining team has an evacuation plan if necessary. This way we have a good work environment and a safe place to stay for the duration of this situation. Some staff members have or will go stay with family outside of Bangkok and work from home. We feel good about our contingency planning and our ability to function normally.

While we hope you would notice no interruption or change in our service levels over the next two weeks, it is possible we might be a little slower on non-urgent requests should most of us have to leave Bangkok as we settle into alternative work places. But again, we’re cloud-based and we’re making sure everyone on the team is ready to work remotely and communicate as a team effectively, regardless of location.

The Pronto team is amazing – the way they pull together and take care of each other is fantastic. I’m quite confident that should events turn to the worst, everyone will step up and make us all proud of them. The Pronto team has already done one fundraiser for flood victims, and we’ll continue to make sure that we remember those less fortunate than ourselves. So far most of us have avoided any problems, and the few team members who have had to leave flooded areas are safe with family. Hopefully this is the story a week from now.

To summarize:

  • Pronto infrastructure – both our business and your Web hosting are 100% safe and will not be impacted in any way.
  • We have contingency plans in place to ensure the safety of the Pronto team and our ability to function as a business.
  • We expect our service levels to remain normal, with perhaps some short-term impact in terms of turn-around time.

If you have any concerns please let me know. If there’s any change that could impact you, we’ll communicate that. Our Facebook page is a great place to keep up with events and the team. I encourage you to visit and like our Facebook page.

Regards,

Derek

 

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    Cohen Barnes

    Appreciate the information Derek and my best to all of you and your families during this tough time.  Take care of yourselves!