20 December 2021

Groundhog Year?

About this time last year, we looked back on 2020 and said, As we come to the end of 2020, we are still to find out if our attempt to isolate ourselves in a bubble, separate and distant from the rest of the world, can work. With the help of real science (vaccines) we may yet get away with it and make 2021 a year to remember. Let's hope so.”

So much for those hopes. Politicians and bureaucrats do not seem to have prepared that well for future waves. Maybe they reckoned there was no need, given the apparent success of their ‘world-leading’ elimination strategy. Last year, we also said, “It is easy to criticise the Government for […] missteps, but we must forgive them, for they knew not what they were doing.” This year, we are not quite so forgiving.

On a positive note, our colleagues at DSL were amazing. They coped with wild fluctuations in volumes of work and managed to complete jobs no more than one or two days from the KPI targets. By contrast, at least one of our major competitors is running three and a half weeks behind. Couriers are having trouble scaling up to meet demand and their delays in delivery appear to be increasing.

Another positive note is that our clients were also amazing, both in their resilience and forbearance. By that we mean that none have gone out of business, and we have not received complaints about the small delays in meeting targets. Thank you. We decided to remove the “KPIs Suspended, Best Endeavours” Covid disclaimer from our portal by the end of this month and will return to aim for the usual KPI of at least 98% on-target.

We too have learned something, so we refrain from making hopeful predictions for 2022. We do, however, note that even the worst plagues in history came to an end, usually within two years of the outbreak. What we can assure you is that we will continue to aim to keep business – yours and ours – running as best we can. We thank you for your continued support and wish you a great Christmas and a better New Year.

Daniel Silva

08 December 2021

Our Heads Are Up In The Clouds

We have just finished migrating our main servers to the cloud, hosted by Microsoft on their Azure platform. This means that our file, email, data, web, and other servers no longer live in the airconditioned storeroom opposite the office kitchen.  

This also means that we can sleep better, in the knowledge that a hoodie-wearing lowlife from Minsk or Pyongyang can’t blackmail us for some bitcoin in exchange for your data. It also means that we have a much better chance of continuing to serve your orders without interruption, and are able to easily scale up our IT systems as demand increases. 

In other IT news, we welcomed Christian Whyte to our in-house fulltime developers’ team last week. Christian will be focusing on migrating our client portal to the new .Net 6 Blazor framework. When that project is completed, you may not notice much of a change on how the site looks or works, except that it will be faster and more secure. 

Phillip Rashleigh