COVID and Digital Transformation: Impact on Businesses

According to studies, the pandemic has resulted in a 20% increase in total internet usage, owing to factors such as increased demand for videoconferencing and entertainment streaming services. The trend of remote working is likely to continue in the future and, when used effectively, can provide positive opportunities.

COVID has brought a drastic change in the way business was done before 2020. To remain competitive in this new business and economic environment, new strategies and practices are required. Our findings indicate that executives are paying attention: the majority of respondents recognize technology’s strategic importance as a critical component of the business, not just a source of cost efficiencies. Respondents from companies that have successfully responded to the crisis report a range of technology capabilities that others do not, most notably filling gaps for technology talent during the crisis, the use of more advanced technologies, and the speed with which they experiment and innovate.

Why has the internet proven to be so resilient?

The answer to this question is straightforward:Beginning with its Advanced Research Projects Agency Network days, when the United States military was its first user, the internet was designed from the start to withstand both anticipated and unanticipated stresses. As a result, the network had to be as resistant to attacks and downtime as possible. In some ways, it was ahead of its time because, unlike traditional communication channels at the time, it was not prone to single points of failure, bringing the entire system down.

Today, we readily appreciate the internet’s ability to facilitate globalization. Even if users in one country experience server problems, they can remain connected; servers or data centres in other locations are immediately available to take over if that country’s systems fail.

How can businesses use the internet effectively right now?

The internet has played a significant role in keeping our businesses and personal lives running during the global pandemic. It is a testament to the efforts of many companies to ensure its stability and reliability. Businesses with a strong online presence recognize the internet’s importance and effectiveness.

Even so, as early adopters become accustomed to the network’s ease of connectivity, it’s important not to overlook the work that goes on behind the scenes. Furthermore, latecomers must recognize that moving forward necessitates a shift to an online business model in order to thrive. The digital transformation will not occur overnight; however, while the less tech-savvy catch-up, today’s practical business owners and managers can be confident that the infrastructure they require will not fail them.

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Here are a few core principles of Digital Transformation:

  • Adhere to a clearly defined vision that is centred on the needs of the customers and is shared by the entire team.
  • The C-suite must take the lead in ensuring that the path to that vision balances the needs of the company, its employees, its shareholders, and the larger community, as well for deciding which considerations should be incorporated into every business decision.
  • Have the necessary infrastructure, technology, resources, and expertise in-house, through partners, or acquired.
  • Transform internal as well as external processes and practices.
  • Create a supportive environment and culture of continuous innovation with the goal of revolutionizing the customer experience and unlocking new business opportunities and models.

What can we expect in the future?

While Covid-19 will continue to change the way we use and rely on the internet, the prevalence of digital technologies and connected devices will help organizations stay afloat, an unthinkable feat 20 years ago. Many businesses will likely continue to operate remotely in the post-Covid-19 era in order to reduce real estate costs and increase productivity. After all, why would a company require employees to commute for hours when they could be doing something more productive with their time?

The trend of remote work began long before the pandemic, but Covid-19 has accelerated it significantly. The work-from-home model creates numerous opportunities for economic growth, global talent recruitment, job creation, and, ultimately, increased human prosperity and well-being. However, the inherent risk of this model is that those who cannot access the internet (currently, roughly half of the world’s population) will be even more disenfranchised than before, and the issue of universal internet access will become even more pressing than it is now.

There is little chance that we will ever return to doing business the old-fashioned way after 2020. Whether we like it or not, the Great Reset is real, and it is taking place right now in front of our eyes. Let us ensure that it results in a better, happier, and more equitable world for all.

Increased technology investment and prioritization

Businesses were compelled to prioritize the implementation of this technology. Before the onset of the COVID crises, more than half of businesses believed that a lack of prioritization was the primary reason for the failure to implement digital transformations and capabilities. When Covid-19 forced organizations to prioritize these changes, they were able to do so at breakneck speed.

Paying attention to employee and customer technology experiences

Companies were forced to think carefully about the employee experience using digital capabilities because employees were forced to work nearly entirely from home for the duration of their local shutdown. They couldn’t expect employees to simply’ make do’ with what they had. As companies across industries adapt to virtual work, employees’ online experiences directly impact their job satisfaction.

With many businesses struggling to navigate the difficult environment created by the pandemic, no one wants to deal with the high turnover resulting from low employee satisfaction and the costs associated with hiring regular new employees.

‘Spring cleaning’ of technology to restructure investments

This push for digital transformation has also resulted in many organizations beginning to think for investment in the ‘spring cleaning’ process. The pandemic’s reliance on technology, on the other hand, has forced people to reconsider their technology investments and how they align with what they need to effectively run a digitally-focused business.

Brands must first carefully consider which software and capabilities they have invested in. Examine whether there are many overlapping costs and investments, as well as redundancies in capabilities. Examine why the companies invested in multiple technologies to see if there is a justification for the various services. Look for ways to reduce investments while still meeting the needs of the various departments.

Automation to enhance the customer experience and create contactless services

As customers have increasingly requested contactless services, brands have seen a significant push toward automation, which has improved their ability to provide this experience for customers. The fewer processes that employees must handle, the easier it is for brands to create positive, safe customer experiences. Automation has enormous potential for brands, assisting in the management of everything from inventory to email subscription lists. 

Seeing technology as a means of thriving and innovating

Before the pandemic, many businesses saw technology as a way to save money and eliminate waste. When data can be analyzed and emails can be sent automatically when triggered, for example, it frees up the sales and marketing teams to focus on tasks that automation and technology cannot handle. Prior to the pandemic, nearly half of businesses reported that one of their top three digital priorities was using technology to reduce company costs.

Increased cybersecurity investment

Cyber security has become an important part of the digital transformation. Organizational cybersecurity priorities have shifted as a result of the pandemic. They have shifted their focus from providing assistance during routine tasks and maintaining internal networks to empowering the remote workforce. Those in charge of cybersecurity have quickly shifted their work and emphasis, utilizingvirtual private networks (VPN) capabilities and working to educate and protect employees from scams and attacks that threaten remote workers.

Signing Off

COVID has set new horizons for digital transformation. It is more than a necessity than being a requirement for businesses of all sizes. In such a scenario, it is essential to select your digital transformation partner wisely. With proven industry experience, the expert team of Transmogrify ensures you have the right strategy, implementation, and management of your IT infrastructure.