Anna Nowicka | Digital transformation | 22.04.2020
By the end of 2019, multiple reports identified the main trends for building digital innovation strategies. But then one thing happened that none of the reports could foresee: the outbreak of the Sars-Cov-2 virus, which not only infected humans, but also affected myriad businesses worldwide. All this has made 2020 the right time to stop thinking about digital innovation. It is the best time to act.
What started as a local slowdown in China evolved into a global lockdown. The crisis caused by Sars-Cov-2 could end up being bigger than anything in the world post-World War II. In the Eurozone from Q4 2019 to Q2 2020, GDP had fallen as much as -10% by April 2020. Each and every day we read about plants and factories being closed, business resilience being at risk, new supply chain disruptions, companies negotiating contracts and collective dismissals. As per research, it might take up to 12 months to get back to the pre-crisis state. But none of this is for certain. What we can be sure of is that it will change the way businesses operate, and that many will have to rebuild their digital innovation
As per Gartner, “The value of digital channels, products and operations is immediately obvious to companies everywhere right now”. That is true – however not all business can be digitized to the same level. It may result in a deepening of the divide between businesses undergoing digital transformation and those that simply cannot fully undergo this process – and we must be aware that some industries would be affected anyway. However, plenty of businesses can be virtualized to a certain degree: healthcare, e-learning, fitness, sales, and banking. This may further result in a deepening of the digital divide between entire industries. Those that can function online will have an advantage and so should make the most of it.
Sars-Cov-19 helped to define the point up to which certain companies can be virtualized. Within a couple of weeks, it turned out that the barriers holding many companies back from working from home can be moved. There are many examples of companies that have successfully and surprisingly gone digital. We can also see a glimpse of light at the end of the tunnel, and there will be some lessons learned for those businesses that can be virtualized to a greater extent. Here are the first visible positive effects of digitization:
The emerging trends for 2020 turned out to be the same that could protect many businesses from the slowdown. Even if some IT projects are now being postponed, CIOs should be aware that investments in digital transformation will pay off once the pandemic is over. Here are the main trends for companies which are willing to thrive:
Ask yourself the following questions to determine which areas you need improvement in:
Running a business calls for flexibility. The coronavirus brought a plethora of negative consequences, but also showed us that we can move digital boundaries even if the physical ones remain closed. There is no need to wait to take certain measures – from now on you can start to reshape your business, consult, and search for IT partners for the future. It is highly likely that you will need them anyway, so why not be one step ahead and one step closer to a digital uprising?