When the COVID-19 pandemic first hit the headlines last year, nobody could have imagined the impact it would have on the world. One year later, we still seem to have been caught unaware. There are many things we don’t yet know about the virus. But we do know that it has changed the way we view the healthcare system, education, and the commercial sector across the planet. However, the digital landscape is the area that has been most clearly affected by the pandemic.
This has led to a plethora of changes in the way adjacent sectors operate and how they are viewed by the public, as well as insiders in the industry. For example, the pandemic has resulted in the need for working from home, changing the workplace forever. The concept of curbside pickups and home deliveries also altered the way businesses operate and use digital systems.
In other words, businesses and companies have had to use technology to quickly adapt to changing circumstances. Similarly, the pandemic has changed customer needs overnight, and businesses had to act quickly to respond to those needs. This kind of fast-acting flexibility is only possible by making use of data, as well as digital resources and tech capabilities. At the same time, your organization will need a team of quick-thinking and imaginative members who can come up with innovative ideas with or without IT.
Digital Agility During COVID-19
Although businesses have been gradually upgrading their practices even before the pandemic, they were in full crisis mode in 2020. COVID has sped up the need for digital transformation. The pandemic has further amplified the demand for digital capabilities such as self-service portals, mobile communications, and eCommerce portals.
Switching to a cloud-based, scalable solution where digital, adaptive engagement and automated processes allow customer-driven interactions, guided conversations, and personalized communications will deliver the infrastructure required to manage convenient, compliant, accessible, and fast communications that are provided via the customer’s preferred channel.
As most of the population is currently working from home and businesses prefer ‘contactless’ operation, replacing use and dependence on print and in-person communication is vital. Businesses that have invested in cloud-based technologies with digital delivery can easily switch their focus to all-digital or nearly all-digital communications quickly. These companies can now focus elsewhere knowing that their communications are punctual, customized, and interactive. There are fewer issues to iron out and reduced chances of errors and issues, so customers will be more comfortable with the change.
Moreover, all sorts of businesses are adjusting to operational risks and looking for new ways to reform their business continuity plans. Altering entire businesses means that you will have to think beyond employees and clients/customers. You will also have to think about partners, upper management, investors, and third-party organizations and come up with a plan that benefits everyone with the least amount of friction.
During this time all sorts of businesses are trying to mitigate operational risks and are looking for new ways to tweak their business continuity plans. To be successful, organizations must be in a position in which business users are in control and can quickly apply changes and manage processes swiftly and easily, without absolute dependence on IT.
Although digital transformation has been on every company’s priority lately, just a couple of years ago executives of companies had a varying sense of urgency around their transformations. But right now, digital is vital. Every industry is going through sudden and possibly permanent changes and must quickly adapt to them. It is becoming clear that IT will lead the path through this time of instability. Both leaders of the business and tech sectors have to negotiate how business and IT will work together to transform and create the foundation for innovation.
IT teams are the agents of data and digital capabilities, making them the key to decentralizing innovation. They can make these capabilities available to others in the organization and begin the shift to a self-service prototype. However, moving a lot of IT to a self-service model can be difficult, although self-service isn’t impossible or even a brand-concept. In fact, many businesses have switched to this model and continue to operate successfully.
It is now imperative for businesses to be prepared with the tools and capabilities needed for the organization to be more digital-based, agile, and customer-centric. Moreover, digital agility will be a key factor after the pandemic has subsided. It will be the basis on which businesses will fade to the background or continue to grow and thrive once things get back to normal.
However, the future looks promising, as this crisis holds solutions for digital transformation that are beginning to be clearer. Need help pushing your business in the right direction? Start by getting hold of API-led connectivity solutions and usher in a new age for your organization!