Community Fibre Case Study

David Moran, Delivery Manager at Community Fibre

What is your role in maintaining the network and supporting customers during COVID-19?

As a Delivery Manager, I am the field-based management of the past, present and future work in borough and council areas of London. I liaise between residents, housing associations and our contractors to ensure any work we do is carried out safely and to the highest standard.

Has your role changed since the lockdown? If so, how?

Whilst much of my work is business as usual, I have adapted to government guidelines of maintaining distance and wearing PPE as required. Coronavirus also presents fresh lines of enquiry from residents, which I am happy to address, whilst meetings between Community Fibre teams, councils or housing associations are held over video conferencing.

Why do you think it is important that you continue to work during COVID-19?

I believe coronavirus has identified more than ever that London and the wider UK requires full fibre broadband, with much of the nation now working and schooling from home. With so many high bandwidth demands, often with multiple simultaneous users, poor performing old copper technology can really hinder people's ability to do the things they need to do. With our full fibre network, we are playing a key role in bringing the internet speed needed.

What do you find most difficult about working during the lockdown?

The onsite engagement with residents and contractors is the most challenging. Maintaining social distancing presents a host of challenges whilst residents expectedly have a host of questions aimed at what we provide.

Can you tell us about your proudest moment while working during the lockdown?

I am proud to say since the pandemic began, myself and three others on my team have been providing a food delivery service for a charity called FoodCycle with the use of our Community Fibre vehicles. Many of the residents we deliver food to are elderly or medically vulnerable, so assisting those in need in this troubled time is a real honour.

Has the response you receive from the public changed since the lockdown?

Yes. Whilst the vast majority of the public are supportive and appreciate that we are carrying out our work, we have unfortunately had an increase of queries from residents approaching us with questions related to 5G conspiracy theories, because of videos they have seen on social media. We are now putting signs up where we are working so the public is aware of what we are doing and why.