7. April 2020

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“You Don’t Have to Pay, Because You Are Our Customer”

What is the biggest challenge for you and your company in the current situation?

One of our essential challenges is to provide customers, prospects, and business collaborators with our ongoing support during this crisis and try to mitigate the impact that COVID-19 has on their operations to the best of our ability. We increased our communications in Austria on all available channels to ensure our customers and partners know that we continue to deliver parts, maintain production, and supply mobile solutions wherever possible. But besides that, we quickly came to identify many more critical aspects that were urgently affecting our customers.

What did you come to find were your customers’ most critical points?

We learned that there is a lack of personal protection equipment almost everywhere. We even had customers call us directly and ask whether they could buy masks and protective suits from us no matter the price. And we also found out that people suffer from wearing the masks and gloves and that they have to put up with unpleasant side effects from the constant use of disinfectant.

And how did you respond to these findings?

Together with our application team, we thought of ways in which we could provide immediate help to all our customers, especially regarding the lack of equipment, and so the idea of a small support package emerged. We call it the COVID-19 Care Box. It contains one package of FFP2 masks, some cotton gloves of different sizes to be worn under latex or nitrile gloves for skin protection, and one bottle of hand sanitiser. We wrapped those boxes up nicely, added a card and a personalised letter, and started sending them out this week.

Have you received any feedback on the COVID-19 Care Box so far?

I would have to ask the team if we already received any feedback. We did ask our customers in the letters to send us a photo if possible, though, so we’re awaiting responses right now. There was a woman, however, a doctor, who called us – while we were preparing the boxes – because she desperately needed protective equipment for her team. When we told her we would send her protective gear for free, she couldn’t believe we didn’t want any payment. As we explained to her that she didn’t have to pay because she was our customer, she was incredibly thankful… This really reassured us in taking on this project.

How do you expect the crisis to progress?

It is difficult to say how this situation will unfold. We will continue to monitor the circumstances, both in Japan and all around the world, to gather relevant information. But most importantly, we will continue to dedicate ourselves to helping our customers in delivering the highest quality of care.

Andreas Pangratz, MBA
Management at Canon Medical Systems Gesellschaft m.b.H.


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