Yet another AAA video company is advising its staff to work from home amid fears over coronavirus contagion. In a message to employees today, which was obtained and reported on by Kotaku, Ubisoft’s CEO Yves Guillemot spoke of the company taking “necessary steps” to ensure staff are kept healthy and given adequate support.
While not in itself a particularly surprising takeaway, what was especially notable was the reassuring and warming tone of Guillemot’s reflected throughout his message. There’s a refreshingly personal sentiment conveyed in what could have otherwise been a cold and corporate delivery of inevitable news.
Guillemot’s message reads in full:
We are now in a pandemic, with far-reaching effects on our daily lives. At this exceptional juncture, it is essential that we take special care of ourselves and our loved ones. The health and well-being of Ubisoft team members is our primary concern, and we have taken the necessary steps to ensure that all of you are safe and get the right support through these demanding changes. In particular, we have been encouraging all of our collaborators to work from the safety of their homes since the end of last week.
Across Ubisoft, people are going above and beyond to adapt to this unprecedented event. My warm thanks go to both your local and global management teams, who have done such remarkable work in implementing the required preventative measures, in line with recommendations from national authorities and the World Health Organization. I also want to commend the proactivity of our teams who have gone to great lengths to provide us with solutions to work from home under the best possible conditions, thus ensuring the continuity of our operations.
As for the potential impact of the pandemic on our business, not only do we have sufficient cash reserves to take us through the storm, and Ubisoft’s international scope and our collaborative spirit also put us in a position to redeploy some our activities away from affected regions if needs be. Moreover, our core business – video games – enables us to offer a meaningful contribution to all those who currently seek enjoyable ways of spending their time within the confinement of their homes.
This is an unforeseen challenge that requires all of us to be even more caring, thoughtful, agile and resilient. Everyone has a role to play, and this includes taking the necessary precautions to protect ourselves and people around us. I believe we can learn a great deal from our teams in China, who have faced the same trials a few weeks before us: the experience of our Chinese friends give us hope in showing that responsible behaviour and pro-active public health measures can lead us out of the crisis.
We will continue to provide you with regular updates as we move forward. Your local managers and I are also available should you have questions or concerns. In the meantime, please take care of yourself.
Guillemot has always been big on reinforcing what he refers to as a “family atmosphere” at Ubisoft, and this perhaps is another affirmation of his commitment to that dynamic.