Durham tech company keeps communication lively between athletic programs amidst crisis

DURHAM, N.C. (WTVD) -- Durham tech company Teamworks' whole business is based on communication and never has that been more important.

Just ask CEO Zach Maurides.

"For our customers, Teamworks is critical infrastructure for them so we need to always be ahead of the curve. Certainly, this is the first time we've had to deal with a pandemic."

A former Duke football player, Maurides' company is now the industry leader when it comes to getting college athletic departments and pro teams and their athletes on the same page. In the midst of the pandemic, they've made their service entirely free. Over 70 teams and departments have since signed up.

"We saw in this, in this moment, a call to action to really help. Particularly the universities and the professional teams who were postponing, canceling seasons, athletes that are away on spring break and returned to campus. There was such an incredible need for them to communicate. And it was really a no brainer," said Maurides.

NC Central football's operations manager, Travis Taylor, uses Teamworks app constantly.

"Everything's changing so rapidly, everything's changing so fast, day in and day out. And, you know, one of the most important parts of this is having leadership so you can have communication to our students as well."

It's been a rough road for the Eagles football team of late. Before the virus even hit, they suffered a team-wide tragedy when a freshman player was killed. A victim of gun violence. Taylor says Teamworks was immediately there, supporting them.

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"They reached out to us when they found out about our player passing and they actually came over and did some things for us and really helped us out during a tough time and you know even now with the, 'you know virus' and everything that's going on, they're reaching out constantly asking us, you know, if we need anything, how can we make things better."

All teams like to preach family. Now's the time when that has to show up, not just as sentiment but tangible reality. Transmitting a clear message to everyone in the extended team framework is a huge part of that.

"We've been communicating day in and day out in Teamworks. As soon as we get word from the administration, we will decipher it and we'll see what needs to go to students, right to students. We are sending out surveys on Teamworks to make sure people have what they need, to make sure our guys have housing, have meals and things of that sort," says Taylor.

As for Maurides, he like the rest of us is hoping these current challenges yield a stronger and more cohesive community.

"This is a moment for not just all Americans, but everyone around the world to rally together, help each other. If you have resources, if you have ability, skills, help. Ask how you can help. Get engaged. Give."
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