COVID-19 has accelerated digital transformation and technological adoption in a number of sectors.
Though the crisis has massively disrupted supply chains, productivity, consumption, and financial markets, those very same disruptions have compelled companies around the globe to rethink the way they operate.
Every industry has been affected differently by the crisis, but there is one common denominator that enables companies to maintain continuous business operations: digital technology.
5 Digital Transformation Trends Being Accelerated by COVID-19
Digital transformation – leveraging digital technology to enhance organizational performance and operations – has been gradually transforming the economy for the past several decades.
Yet with the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic, digital transformation has taken an exponential leap forward.
Accenture, for instance, chose to compress three years of transformation into three months. And Microsoft’s Satya Nadella claimed that the rapid adoption of Microsoft’s remote working tools represented “two years’ worth of digital transformation in two months.”
COVID-19, in other words, is the “great accelerator” of our time.
As I mentioned in my previous article on disruptive technology, it is crucial for companies to pivot now for tomorrow’s digital economy.
Here are five technologies and trends to pay close attention to, since they will become defining characteristics of the post-COVID era:
Fintech. Digital wallets, contactless payments, challenger banks, commissionless stock platforms, and other innovative financial sectors have grown significantly during 2020.
Robotics. During the pandemic, robots have been used to clean streets, pack meat, perform surgery, care for the elderly, enforce social distancing, and much more.
Remote working. Almost overnight, enterprises around the world became virtual workplaces, which drove the adoption of tools such as remote working software, remote training software, video conferencing tools, and cloud computing.
Cloud computing. Without cloud computing, remote working and software-as-a-service (SaaS) would be impossible, so it is unsurprising that cloud computing grew significantly this year.
Automation. Software- and AI-based automation has been on the horizon for years, but, as a result of the crisis, many companies are implementing automation tools far more rapidly than they would have otherwise.
These five trends, of course, only scratch the surface of the changes that lie in store for us.
3D printing, drone technology, autonomous vehicles, and many other innovative technologies are on the verge of upending entire industries – if not the very structure of the global economy.
Adapting to these changes, as many leading research firms have pointed out, is not just a good idea, it may very well become a matter of survival.