The Year Like No Other: Crisis Response & Business Continuity in 2020

Jun 24, 2021 1:00 PM ET

As featured in the Keysight Technologies 2020 Corporate Social Responsibility R…

The magnitude of global disruption in 2020 tested the strength and adaptability of businesses and communities all over the world. As the COVID-19 pandemic spread, societal impacts from weather-related disasters, wildfires, and political unrest also took place. Keysight was not immune to these events. However, the company’s corporate mission of accelerating innovation to connect and secure the world, coupled with our CSR vision to help build a better planet, exemplify how Keysight’s strategic value is especially relevant during crises. Past incidents — such as the 2017 Tubbs fire near Keysight headquarters — also affirmed the company’s strong business continuity approach while providing invaluable learnings for navigating 2020. As a result, Keysight’s prior preparation and experience positioned the company to quickly mobilize in 2020 to continue delivering to customers and business commitments, while supporting the safety and security of employees, their families, and the broader community.


Fiscal year 2020 brought upwards of 13 wildfires close to Keysight locations. This resulted in impacts to multiple Keysight communities in the U.S. including some employees evacuating their homes and multiple days of poor air quality. In addition, some Keysight California offices and employee homes were impacted by planned power outages intended to minimize the potential of new fires during high wind and dry conditions.

Following the company’s crisis management approach, Keysight supported employees and their families through employee relief centers that provided emergency supplies — including personal care items, clothing, food, and water — as well as access to mental health support services, IT connectivity, charging stations for personal devices, financial assistance, and referrals for temporary housing.

Keysight continues to mitigate wildfire risk impact to its sites through landscape maintenance and vegetation management to minimize available natural fuels, adding fire breaks around site properties, the addition of an on-site fire team for our headquarters office, and other efforts.


Keysight began monitoring the coronavirus in early January of 2020, engaging our Global Crisis Management Team and setting response prioritization around three stakeholders: the health and safety of employees and their families; support for customers providing critical infrastructure and essential services; and helping local communities fight the pandemic.

Below exemplify our 2020 efforts.

Employees & Their Families

  • Ahead of government regulations and requirements, halted domestic and international travel, asked employees to work from home if possible, and temporarily closed many locations
  • During site closures, continued to pay employees and contractors regardless of work location, and implemented a regular employee communications cadence
  • When closures lifted, implemented rigorous safety procedures and protocols, including free personal protective equipment, for employees working at manufacturing and service sites to support essential customers
  • Preserved full pay for employees, while senior vice presidents took a temporary 50% and CEO 100% base pay cut to keep the company strong and protect jobs
  • No employees were laid-off due to COVID-19


  • When closures lifted, ramped production capability at key sites to support essential infrastructure and key customers, such as medical equipment providers
  • Implemented strict safety, health, and sanitation protocols for hardware support services
  • Provided complimentary software trials to customers working from home, helping them stay productive
  • Engaged with customers as part of their supply chain to ensure alignment to required customer pandemic protocols
  • Closely monitored supply chain to align to pandemic protocols
  • Shifted to virtual demonstrations, events, and services for our solutions


  • Donated personal protective equipment and janitorial supplies to charitable relief, healthcare, and emergency responder organizations around the world
  • Made over $1 million in contributions to nonprofits
  • Increased total amount of company match for employee donations, as well as individual cap for company match
  • Initiated engagements with online mentorship programs and university relations to continue support for science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education in lieu of in-person volunteer engagements

Looking forward, Keysight continues to actively monitor the COVID-19 situation as it evolves and will take additional steps as necessary to protect employees, customers, shareholders, and local communities throughout the dynamic and ongoing impact of this pandemic.

Learn more about Keysight's progress in our 2020 Corporate Social Responsibility Report