Post-COVID19 crisis Digital Trends that will reshape your Business in 2020
In business and entrepreneurship, the presence of uncertainty is probably the only certainty. In all likelihood, that uncertainty has grown exponentially this year. But one thing is certain, in such a time of crisis, significant importance is being given to innovations. This innovation is rendering outdated approaches extinct and causing many companies to completely rethink the way they operate.
The first stage in the COVID-19 crisis was survival. Entrepreneurs needed to cut costs, revisit forecasts, and stabilize their business. But that can only get you so far. Now, you need to be thinking beyond COVID-19.
You’re not forgetting or avoiding the practices that have saved and scaled your business so far. Instead, now you’re maintaining your crisis plan while looking for previously non-existent opportunities to gain back some traction.
Today, researchers and analysts agree that the crisis has led to emerging business opportunities. It is being said that the recovery from COVID-19 will be primarily digital.
On that note, let’s explore the latest trends in information technology and practical tips for your business to leverage during recovery.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- Tech and IT trends for Businesses in 2021 (Post COVID-19 crisis)
- How to prepare yourself and your business for a digital transition?
- Final Words
Tech and IT trends for Businesses in 2021 (Post COVID-19 crisis)
A lot of technology trends that were slow to gain traction have seen an unprecedented boost in the past year. Let’s explore a few such technology trends to be aware of going into the end of 2020.
Over the past 10 years, AI has become a consistent presence and focus for technology companies all over the world. In the past, it has been useful for incremental functionality in iPhone (Siri) and self-driving cars (Tesla). But today, it’s truly becoming a major business disruptor. This is happening not just because of its capability to accelerate and automate rule-based processes but also because it helps improve operational efficiency and reduces human error.
Entrepreneurs who want to start a business or pivot the model of their established business can use AI to build as-a-service operations. There is still plenty of room for competition in current ride-sharing, food delivery avenues that are worth exploring. AI can help take your business to new heights and help you make smarter and better decisions.
IoT – Internet of Things
The Internet of Things (IoT) assists in capturing and delivering data from an array of interconnected devices. In simpler words, IoT is a combination of sensors and data analytics systems that help businesses aggregate metrics to make more accurate decisions.
After the COVID-19 crisis, IoT is becoming the main driver of telehealth or e-health, helping physicians remotely monitor patients’ state and alert them to urgent conditions. IoT is also improving remote doctor visits. This allows patients and doctors to have more versatile check-ups, without having to meet in-person.
The advantages of IoT even extend to products and services. Businesses in the Supply chain management sector are leveraging these data sources in app development for smart inventory management, logistics, and merchandising. Today, IoT applications are commonplace in the manufacturing, agriculture, automotive, logistics, energy, and hospitality industries, to name a few.
Remote work has increased exponentially due to COVID-19. This increase in remote work is making cybersecurity one of the top priorities post-COVID-19. With the increase in the number of disparate connections to sensitive data, the potential targets for perpetrators are also increasing.
Phishing, IoT attacks, Cryptojacking, ransomware, state-sponsored attacks, and crypto-physical attacks are the top cybersecurity threats this year. Simply put, the opportunities and avenues for data breaches are increasing. Even the methods to do so are becoming more and more intricate.
Data breaches are among the greatest cybersecurity concerns in 2020. Health records, corporate intellectual property, smart cars, and connected devices are the most vulnerable targets of data breaches. Today, tech companies rely heavily on data encryption and blockchain technology for resolving cybersecurity issues. As a result, these technologies are becoming more readily available and cheaper.
5G Mobile Network
As a next-gen cellular network technology, 5G has a number of advantages over 4G. Wider coverage, greater data bandwidth, higher speed, and lower latency are just a few such advantages. This technology has the potential to transform the world as we know it. It can improve the functionality of self-driving cars, AR/VR, and even facilitate machine-to-human interactions.
5G technology is expected to be implemented by 2030. But, 2020 marks the beginning of the deployment of the 5G telecommunication network. This technology will act as a major impetus for accelerated development and the adoption of most of today’s groundbreaking technologies.
AI, IoT, 5G, all these trends will develop in synergy. 5G will fuel the development of all the other technologies and it will also create the need for sophisticated cybersecurity solutions.
Much like on-demand delivery services, freelancing marketplaces like Upwork will continue to gain popularity post-COVID19. Job cuts and budget reductions are forcing businesses to hire more freelancers. Online freelancing platforms enable businesses to tap into extensive pools of global talent and hire qualified workers.
There are plenty of ways to make the most of this emerging service by providing better service, streamlined applications, or greater job curation.
How to prepare yourself and your business for a digital transition?
1. Learn to manage a remote workforce
As a business owner, you must ensure clear and transparent communication, accurate information on risks, and safety measures taken by the company under these circumstances. Try to include your employees in the process of decision-making as you agree on the return to work dates and schedules. This will have a positive impact on employee loyalty.
Staying remote may be necessary if you are concerned about employee health and morale when returning to the office. But you must not think of remote-work as a bad situation that’ll reduce productivity. There are plenty of cost-saving, productivity, and hiring benefits associated with remote work that make it an attractive option.
A hybrid model, that involves combining both on-site and remote work, is likely the natural step ahead for most businesses. It still holds the productivity and cost benefits of remote work while allowing the opportunity for in-person interaction.
Bottom line is that remote work is here to stay. Learning how to manage a remote workforce will help your business successfully move towards digital adoption. Remote workforce monitoring solutions and apps for building employee engagement make this easier. But the earlier you embrace it, the sooner you’ll reap the benefits.
2. Expand your business beyond your core company
To meet the changing expectations of customers post-crisis, business owners have had to create new offerings or pursue new revenue streams outside of their core business. Some of these additions could simply be regular product releases or feature adjustments. While others require a willingness to shake up the entire business model.
A lot of companies are striving to create digital alternatives to their physical services. Many make use of AI tools and analytics to quickly iterate, test, and launch these new ventures.
As you make adjustments to your business, one good rule of thumb is to focus on reevaluating, improving, and rethinking your core business model. Re-analyze your business plan, forecasts, and company goals. Explore digital avenues that complement, enhance, or revitalize your current business and progress from there.
3. Analytics are Important
Companies must become data-driven in order to stay competitive. Apart from customer and market insights, business intelligence tools and solutions can also help detect weak spots in your business. AI analytics can also help you detect new business opportunities.
You must start with solutions that give you a better understanding of the health of your business. That can be automatic financials, web KPIs, machinery diagnostics, sales platforms, or anything else that gives you a better insight into your business. Subsequently, leverage these tools to better understand your market and explore new business opportunities.
So, make sure to invest in Analytics. They’re the key to making regular improvements and optimizations in your business.
4. Maintain a Startup mentality
Due to the COVID19 crisis, consumer needs have shifted quite quickly. Your business operations must also shift to meet them. Changing business practices can be extremely difficult for established businesses, or really any business that isn’t a startup. As you get more established, you become more comfortable with specific processes and that makes it harder to make adjustments.
The best strategy is to always look back to your business plan, forecasts, and company goals. Ensure that any adjustments or testing supports your overall business operations. Make sure that all technology investments are financially feasible. When you’re testing and improving, the more you can act like a startup, the more likely you are to foresee customer needs and be exactly where they need you to be.
After the COVID-19 crisis, it feels like the world will never be the same again. With changing customer spending habits, digitization, and the spread of remote work, it looks like the world, indeed, will never be the same. With more complications, simply venturing into new business areas won’t be enough for success.
Now, planning for the future has become just as important as focusing on managing your business through this crisis. Pay close attention to your customers, become data-driven, forge new partnerships, and promote workforce resilience to improve your chances of expanding your business post-crisis.
Got any questions? Let us know in the comments below or write to us and we’ll get back to you.