I’ve been relying a lot more on my home collaboration solution since Cisco made the responsible decision to close some of its campuses in northern California as a precaution to the coronavirus. And I can tell you, I am even more of a believer of how technology can improve our communications and collaboration. In fact, when we eventually come out of this, I think we’re going to see a cultural shift more in favor of working remotely that will enable even more productivity, flexibility and environmental benefits. Not to mention more benefits to our personal lives.

There’s no question, the scale and scope of the coronavirus is like none other and I want to assure Cisco partners that we’re taking immediate actions to reduce the impact to your businesses. Here’s a few examples.


We have already decided to not participate in several industry events around the globe. And, closer to our partner community, we made the incredibly difficult decision to cancel some partner-focused events and change others to virtual. In fact, I was on a virtual partner event earlier this week and was impressed at the level of engagement and value that was provided from it (the “new norm” could be the new standard).

We know these events are important for you and don’t take the decision to change them lightly, but everyone’s health and safety is of utmost importance. I want to assure you that Cisco remains committed to providing partners with the forums and information you need to succeed. Thank you for your patience as we adjust in real time to ensure our business together continues to perform and transform.

Enabling Secure, Remote Workers

My experience this week represents the significant increase in remote working happening worldwide. There is an opportunity to aid your customers in keeping employee health and safety as the top priority, while still maintaining productivity and IT security.

We have expanded Webex capabilities for both existing and new customers in all countries where it is available, not only the countries impacted by the coronavirus.

  • For existing Webex customers, we are making it easy for them to expand their subscription on a temporary basis at no additional cost.
  • For non-Webex customers looking to provide host meeting accounts to employees and require centralized administrative capabilities, we are providing free 90-day licenses available from Cisco Webex Control Hub. We have also added FedRAMP trials.
  • For individuals and small businesses that need an immediate solution to enable remote working, we’ve made enhancements to our Free Personal Account

If you haven’t seen it, check out the blog, “Cisco Webex: Supporting customers during this unprecedented time” for details. You can find all the Webex partner resources you need on our partner community page.

In addition, and to help protect organizations with an increase in remote workers, Cisco is providing extended trial license periods and expanded usage counts at no extra charge for Umbrella, Duo and AnyConnect with ASAv. Additional information can be found in this Security Offer Overview.

Gee Rittenhouse, Cisco’s SVP and GM of the Security Business Group, wrote a recent blog on this, which I encourage you to read.

Ensuring Supply Chain

Finally, I know many of you have questions about potential inventory and supply chain issues.  We continue to closely monitor the global supply chain situation. Our top priorities remain the satisfaction and support of partners and customers, as well as the health and well-being of our employees, our suppliers’ employees, and their families.

We have already activated incident management processes that are designed to enable our rapid response to unexpected events like the coronavirus outbreak. As has been widely reported, the potential impact to global supply chains could be considerable, and we are aggressively responding to minimize any impact.

Cisco operates in many regions already affected, and while facilities have resumed operations, there are additional precautions and safeguards in place to ensure both worker safety and ongoing production. As all these steps are being implemented, we are also working aggressively to reroute orders, expedite alternative component supply, and add manufacturing capabilities in other regions.

There’s no question we’re in uncharted waters with this, but I want to assure you we are taking the necessary actions to ensure safety while continuing to run our businesses and deliver on our customers’ needs. We’ve faced challenging situations before and have always come out stronger together.

I appreciate your understanding as we work through this situation and I thank you again for your patience. If you need any additional support or would like to learn from our experiences, please contact your local Cisco team. For ongoing updates, we are maintaining a page on how Cisco is supporting business continuity planning. Please bookmark that page for additional information.


Oliver Tuszik


Cisco EMEA