According to NYU’s Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy, in 2011 31 percent of New York residents paid 50 percent or more of their income in rent and utilities.
Yesterday Symantec announced a special collaboration with the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA), the nation’s largest public housing authority, to provide discounted Norton security software, specialist training and internships to more than 400,000 eligible NYCHA residents (see the flyer, below, that's been posted in the residences). A long-time customer of Symantec products, the NYCHA is committed to increasing opportunities for low- and moderate-income New Yorkers by providing safe, affordable housing and facilitating access to social and community services.
At Symantec, we strive to serve as a trusted advisor to our customers and continually engage them to understand their interests and needs. About a year ago, in a meeting with senior executives of the NYCHA, we discussed how Symantec could provide additional value to the organization and better support its strategic objectives. The key need that surfaced was increasing and improving opportunities for their residents. At this time, we realized there was an opportunity to create a holistic relationship, supporting NYCHA both as an IT enterprise and enhancing the value they provide for residents.
We left the meeting inspired and brainstormed ways to open up opportunities for NYCHA residents, leveraging our products, intellectual capital and brand value. Out of this we identified the three core areas for collaboration:
Protecting NYCHA residents’ information and identities:
Symantec will provide Norton AntiVirus and security products at a 40 percent discount to over 400,000 eligible NYCHA residents with proof of residency. Additionally, Norton Family software will be provided to residents free of charge.
Improving the skills and job readiness of NYCHA residents:
Symantec will offer specialist certification credentials for several security products as a means to validate participants’ technical skills, knowledge and competence. All certification exams follow training programs and measure technical knowledge of core elements such as installation, configuration, product administration, day-to-day maintenance and troubleshooting.
Providing access and inclusion to Symantec’s internships and education programs:
By offering residents access to our internship and education programs, we are providing a unique opportunity to strengthen their skills and credentials with one of the world’s largest software companies.
Through this partnership we’ve enhanced our customer relationship with NYCHA, developing a tailored program that strengthens both NYCHA’s business and ours. At the same time, we are delivering on our commitment to building strong community relationships, and creating positive social impact. In this sense we are truly creating shared value.
We’ve already received great feedback from NYCHA, and both Symantec and NYCHA are excited and inspired about this collaboration. It has taken our relationship with NYCHA to a new level, it has opened our eyes to new possibilities, and it has set a new bar in how we go out and reach new markets. Across our business, there are many opportunities to leverage similar synergies and we look forward to pursuing more of these in the future.
Gigi Schumm is Vice President and General Manager of Symantec’s Public Sector organization.