Steadfast in Uncertain Times: How NERA Is Responding

16 April 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic is forcing dramatic shifts in how businesses operate and how individuals live their lives. No organization and no individual is spared. While the outbreak and the economic fallout will be a challenge for us all, NERA Economic Consulting is well positioned to weather the uncertainty.

Aligned with the global management consultancy Oliver Wyman Group within the Fortune 500 firm Marsh & McLennan Companies, NERA is in a strong financial position and has the technological infrastructure necessary to enable us to work remotely, provide the social distance necessary for our offices to address the health care crisis, and continue providing the thoughtful, independent economic, financial, and quantitative analysis our clients around the world need.

Together, we have taken important steps to ensure we can continue to deliver outstanding analysis and support to our clients and protect the well-being of our colleagues.

Beginning earlier this year, employees working in offices in areas impacted by the pandemic were instructed to work remotely. Today, virtually the entire firm is working remotely. To support this effort, we:

  • Immediately increased the bandwidth, VPN licenses, and infrastructure capacity so that every employee could securely and easily access firm resources and collaborate with their colleagues and clients. This augmented our existing computing infrastructure that was designed to support colleagues around the world with high-speed connectivity and secure access to our networks through VPN access sites across the globe.
  • Worked with vendors to overcome systemic issues within the vendor systems to manage our transition to computer-based telephones, video conferencing, and remote collaboration.
  • Pre-approved the purchase of equipment and material such as keyboards, headsets, and monitors to ensure all staff are equipped to remain productive in their home office environment.
  • Provided live and on-demand training sessions to ensure everyone was familiar with remote networking resources and technologies.
  • Ensured global desktop access to research resources and a dedicated team of information professionals. 
  • Provided professional training to ensure consultants are able to conduct effective virtual depositions and presentations.  

The current global crisis is more than merely a business and technical challenge. Recognizing this could be a difficult personal time for many of our colleagues, we:

  • Benefit from a multi-million-dollar Marsh & McLennan Companies grant program to assist colleagues who may be in financial distress.
  • Pre-approved transportation expenses for colleagues who deemed it necessary to come into their respective offices, including car services and parking costs, and for meal delivery while in the office.
  • Established benefits to assist with the cost of emergency dependent care for children and other family members.
  • Pre-authorized travel expenses for colleagues to return home from work travel as soon as the global nature of the pandemic became apparent.
  • Pre-approved expenses allowing colleagues to account for time spent preparing their home offices or assisting with dependent or child care.

About NERA

NERA Economic Consulting (www.nera.com) is a global firm of experts dedicated to applying economic, finance, and quantitative principles to complex business and legal challenges. For over half a century, NERA's economists have been creating strategies, studies, reports, expert testimony, and policy recommendations for government authorities and the world's leading law firms and corporations. We bring academic rigor, objectivity, and real world industry experience to bear on issues arising from competition, regulation, public policy, strategy, finance, and litigation.

NERA's clients value our ability to apply and communicate state-of-the-art approaches clearly and convincingly, our commitment to deliver unbiased findings, and our reputation for quality and independence. Our clients rely on the integrity and skills of our unparalleled team of economists and other experts backed by the resources and reliability of one of the world's largest economic consultancies. With its main office in New York City, NERA serves clients from more than 25 offices across North America, Europe, and Asia Pacific.