The coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19 pandemic has continued to inconvenience many Filipinos for five months now – declining economy, school closure, travel restriction, delay in delivery of services, cancellation of events that require mass gatherings, and challenge to sustaining quality healthcare system.

For many government institutions, their operations have to continue regardless of the situation and health risks. They had to shift a big percentage of their employees from an office setup to a work-from-home scheme so they could process requests, handle the influx of inquiries from stakeholders, and provide support to the government’s developmental programs.

The Philippine Air Force (PAF) faces the same challenges as with other institutions. It has formed clusters and task forces within its organization in order to address the different facets of its operations. These groups have persistently devised ways to embrace the new normal in its delivery of services which is part of its Business Continuity Plan.

While many consider this as an inconvenience, the PAF perceives it differently; the status quo it experiences has presented opportunities for the organization.

Back when there was no COVID-19, digital applications were quite trendy but now, they have become a necessity.

Similar to many businesses and other government institutions that have to rapidly respond, the PAF has also started adjusting quickly through digitization in order to provide the services that its stakeholders rely on.

In terms of handling its internal communication, the PAF has resorted to implementing a paperless and non-face-to-face transaction. Through its PAF Messaging application, all communication or documents from different PAF units and offices that require approval from higher headquarters are just a few clicks away and can be monitored or accessed anytime.

In this time of crisis, the PAF has relied so much on technology to ensure that there is continuity in conducting its Command activities.

Also, effective communication is key during this trying time and outside of it to the PAF running smoothly. In order to conduct operations without disruption, the PAF has turned to virtual teleconference to get messages across quickly and address concerns on the spot. In adherence to the guidelines on physical distancing, the PAF has applied this mechanism in the conduct of any fora.

These are only a few of the many examples of how digitization has transformed and helped the PAF in its continued operations.

Certainly, digitization in the PAF’s operations will remain. Looking forward, it is expected that this transformation will continue. Technology will also be seen to play a more profound role in making the PAF an innovative and resilient organization.