Most businesses would have sunk in the face of the challenges raised by the pandemic as recently as a decade ago. But over the years, advancements in technology have given organizations the ability to swim amid a disruption of this nature, as the cloud and other emerging technologies joined forces to become a life preserver in a sea of uncertain times.
There's no question, COVID-19 has caused an unprecedented shift in the way businesses and consumers will work and think forever. The global lockdowns and social distancing mandates have not only accelerated the adoption of remote working and virtual learning but have also pushed consumers to try online shopping, telehealth, virtual workouts, virtual tutoring, streaming entertainment, and much more out of necessity. Trends that were expected to take a decade to take hold were adopted in a matter of weeks.
Post-pandemic, workers who spent a year or more working virtually will expect greater flexibility. Whether sitting in an office, a living room, or in transit, the workforce will need to become digital. Enabling the ability to collaborate effectively from anywhere is critical to continued success.
The rapid shift to digital was required for many retail businesses to survive in 2020. More than half of all consumers intend to continue using curbside pickup and grocery-delivery services once the pandemic is over. Those unable to make the transformation are already behind; whether they catch up depends on quick action to close the gap.
During the first quarter of 2020, the number of telehealth visits increased by 50%, compared with the same period in 2019. And at the onset of the pandemic, financial services’ IT departments had to rapidly deploy work-from-home strategies while ensuring surging demands in online banking, purchases, and mobile app usages were met in a regulated industry.