Empty supermarket shelves and shortages in Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) supplies have become familiar sights and news headlines during this pandemic – more so panicdemic! We all realised that panic buying could be more contagious than the COVID-19 virus itself.
With all the latest software technologies at our disposal and sophisticated business infrastructures, supply chains were disrupted and failed to deliver PPE supplies when they were needed most. At a more emotional level, our hearts melted and our eyes filled with tears when we all witnessed the heroic efforts of the healthcare workers – not just in the UK but across the globe.
Civilisation as we know it never had to endure and experience such a ‘surreal event’ at a global level before – with almost every nation on the planet affected simultaneously by it. But, it is real and the ‘normal’ as we know it will never be the same again.
But questions and uncertainty still remain: how will this ‘new normal’ look like beyond this situation and what inevitable changes will it bring?
Change is, of course, constant and a great reality of life. Looking at the weeks and months we left behind during this COVID-19 crisis, we see that this change has turned into a storm that affected the whole world – in terms of health, wealth, politics, economics, etc.
No matter how hard we try to stay safe and protect ourselves, we are affected by this change even when we follow the developments online or news bulletins at our homes. One thing is certain though – we all have to be ready for the reality of a ‘new normal’ in which we need to learn how to live and work with this virus until a sustainable medical solution is developed.
The measures taken to prevent the spread of the epidemic have caused many institutions and firms to temporarily close or to implement different working methods.
‘Digital information and communication technology’ played a huge role in enabling working from home for so many people. Even education now continues at home in many countries around the world.
The realisation is that we all must change our approach to adapt and survive. This is not a new message in the world of IT (Information Technology) and organisational change, but is perhaps more relevant than ever. Marketoonist Tom Fishburne illustrates this point beautifully in this blog.
Change can at last and must become a worthwhile positive rather than perceived to be a negative or too much hardship or cost. With the way the short term economy is headed, survival will be key to many businesses. Investment in people, time (review, training), technology may be the only means by which to achieve this.
We have been reminded once again how important it is to strengthen digital infrastructures and capabilities.
‘Digital Transformation’ has benefited countries, companies and communities in many ways for years – some useful details and findings can be found via World Economic Forum’s Digital Transformation Initiative (DTI) website: https://reports.weforum.org/digital-transformation/
Current COVID-19 outbreak did not impact some sectors and manufacturing companies that achieved ‘digital transformation’ as much as others and with some health and safety adaptions and changes, it was almost ‘business as usual’ for them.
Driven by a forward-looking vision, these companies had already achieved their digital transformation before the COVID-19 outbreak, which started unexpectedly. After taking necessary precautions and making adjustments, these firms continued their work remotely and digitally.
On the other hand, companies that do not have appropriate digital infrastructure and software platforms for remote working, have to work with disconnected infrastructures and have difficulty in trying to manage and coordinate work among their employees.
Moreover, they are still unfit for coping with the current situation and new crisis that may occur in the future – causing delay, loss of time and profit.
Software technologies exist in order to turn the crisis into an opportunity with digital transformation. This will allow companies and their employees to manage their business processes and moreover customers and suppliers through an integrated Cloud platform – remotely, efficiently and safely – for ‘immunising their business’ digitally!
In the midst of this crisis and lock-down, some companies will still not be able to make the decision for ‘digital transformation’ – stuck between uncertainty, concerns for safety and doing something for the future sustainability.
We can all learn lessons from the successful digital innovators and players, whose profits soared during this crisis and also those who benefited from digital transformation. It is of course our greatest and collective desire that this pandemic is over soon with least disruption and impact.
Fundamentally though, the number one priority for all of us currently is to think our health over our wealth, safeguard people and continue to adapt and innovate during these unprecedented and challenging times as our present and future depend on it.
If you want to discover how ZEST I/O can help your business, please get in touch with our team. We will be delighted to discuss how digital transformation can immunise your business!