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The Role of HPA In COVID Response and Recovery

NewsLine sat down (virtually!) with HPA Director Phil Kubel to hear about HPA’s role in responding to the COVID crisis.

Phil Kubel

1) As the COVID crisis hit the industry in March, how HPA was able to respond?

As the COVID crisis transitioned all of us to work from home and eliminated the possibilities of the HPA’s summer networking events, the HPA, like the entire industry, had to switch to a virtual plan. Fortunately, through our amazing volunteers the HPA has access to not only leading edge technology but some of the best minds in the industry. We quickly adapted our Networking Education Technology (NET) program from in-person events to online presentations. This opened up our programming to the entire world, and we have been able to offer it to everyone for free.

Our first presentation revisited the HPA Tech Retreat’s Supersession cloud collaboration production of The Lost Lederhosen led by HPA board member Joachim Zell. The relevancy of this is uncanny. Even though February seems like decades ago, in looking back now this case study served as a real-world foundation and roadmap for the industry during these challenging times.

The Women in Post (WIP) program, which would only have a few events in the summer, now is meeting much more frequently and has created a community for women to discuss the challenges they face and provide an educational platform for them to connect with other women leaders for advice.

In addition to these programs, the HPA is also producing weekly podcasts that take you behind the scenes with SIM’s Jesse Korosi, as well as a new video series that provides insight from industry executives hosted by Mobile TV Group’s Mark Chiolis. Under the leadership of the HPA board, the Industry Recovery Task Force (IRTF) was formed which is currently connecting industry leaders fostering the conversations of how we all return to work.

2) What needs have you seen from the community in the past few months, and what resources are available?

The community needs leadership and support. So many have suffered furloughs or layoffs and are looking for hope or inspiration as well as practical insights on how to rebuild. The HPA is doing its part by being a voice and resource for our members and the community through our many initiatives and programs. One of the first action items the HPA offered was a COVID-19 resource list to our members. We aggregated some of the best practices and articles we could find to provide a one-stop resource. We also conducted a community outreach program where we contacted all of our members to make sure their voice was being heard.

3) Do you have any recommendations for people who have been furloughed or freelancers who are between jobs?

I think we all need to keep our heads up and be as optimistic as possible. These are tough times and the industry has been forever changed, but as a community, if we come together and provide education, insight, and resources, I am confident new opportunities will present themselves.

4) How can our readers support the HPA community?

HPA relies on our members and sponsors to be sustainable and create the vibrant community that is the HPA, so during this time we encourage all of our members to continue to be active in our programs, contribute ideas, provide feedback and share our content. We need you, your thoughts, your ideas and your presence. If you are not a member and would like to join, please visit HPAonline.com today.

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