COVID-19 has turned every aspect of our lives upside down, from how we interact with one another, to how we consume news, to how people work, to how people do business, you name it!
Prolonged lockdown and social distancing all over the world have made it seem like life will never get back to normal even after the crisis is over. The safest thing to do right now is preparing for the “new normal.”
The world of business has been the hardest hit during this coronavirus pandemic. Many people are working from home, some companies have closed down, supply chains have been catastrophically disrupted, and a significant number of working citizens have lost their source of livelihood. Experts predict that about 30% of all businesses in the world, across all sectors, are unlikely to survive this pandemic. Some of the contributing factors to this unfortunate reality include changing consumer behavior, new business trends, and increased cost of doing
With that in mind, what will the future of business look like after COVID-19?
1. Growth of employee-employer trust
The coronavirus has brought forth widespread, honest conversations about working conditions within organizations. Corporate leaders have been engaging their workers at every stage of their corporate response to the coronavirus challenge, and this new strategic initiative might not end even after COVID-19 is gone. Business is running purely on trust and commitment right now.
Senior management is struggling to guarantee employee safety. Because that is a near impossibility, they are banking on employee commitment to keep reporting to work even when doing so puts them and their families at risk. Employers, on the other hand, are forced to trust their junior staff with responsibilities they wouldn’t have, were it not for the pandemic. People are working from home with minimal supervision or guidance, and they are still getting the required results.
In a nutshell, both employers and employees have a chance to develop a trust-based culture for the future. Employers of remote workers will need to liaise with International PEO providers in making this trust-based culture stick because employment will not be the same as we know it now after this pandemic.
2. Growth of a service-first mindset
Companies are focusing more on serving their customers and creating communities around their brands, as opposed to chasing sales and revenue. That is the meaning of a service-first mindset. Going forward, businesses will be providing their customers with what they need now, not what they have needed for the years before coronavirus. Traditional revenue-based business models might no longer be relevant. Production, marketing, and sales plans will be centered on consumer insights.
3. Bigger investments in digital infrastructure
COVID-19 has forced our collective hand to invest in digital infrastructure. Most people are working from home now, and that trend might continue into the foreseeable future. Companies must find digital solutions to keep work going, hold meetings, and supervise remote employees. The need for business executives to travel overseas just for a meeting might not be as essential going forward as it has been in the past. A lot of business functions that have been
transferred to the digital space are highly likely to remain there.
4. Increased reliance on e-commerce
Online shopping has grown tremendously within the last six months, thanks to the global COVID-19 social distancing and isolation calls. With the majority of shopping moved online, the chances are that consumers will get used to the convenience and safety that comes with online shopping. Customer shopping behavior might never go back to “normal.”
Businesses who want to remain competitive after COVID-19 have to figure out ways to have online services. This doesn’t necessarily mean that brick-and-mortar stores will no longer be needed, but their logistics and delivery systems will have to adjust to the changing shopping trends.
5. Supply chain managers will have a more advanced role in business
Supply chain managers will no longer be rubber stampers whose job is just to order supplies and file records. If there is one thing that coronavirus has exposed, it has to be the laxity that has existed along supply lines. Many supply chain managers haven’t had the discipline to track their sources for as long as the supplies kept coming. Some American companies that depended on British manufacturers were shocked to learn that the “British” manufacturers were surrogates of Chinese manufacturers, so they had to close down when coronavirus was first reported in China. Companies will now be vetting and following their supply chains more keenly to ensure suitability.
The good thing is that no matter the reigning uncertainty, businesses will go on. Life will be a little different, but life will go on nonetheless. For now, because nobody knows if the current changes will become permanent, it is best to prepare for any possible future scenario.