COVID-19 has resulted in a massive downturn in economic activity. Its effect on the global economy is being compared to that of other pandemics throughout history. Attempts to limit the spread of the virus have led to the implementation of nationwide lockdowns by many countries, which place the global economy on a standstill. Currently, there is a global economic recession, and it is expected to be worse than that of 2008 or 1929. With the global economy at the brink of total collapse, digital transformation takes a new turn.
According to Microsoft, digital transformation is about reimagining how you bring people together, data, and processes to create value for your customers and maintain a competitive advantage in a digital-first world. It is the integration of digital technology, such as contactless systems, into all areas of a business; thereby, changing the mode of operations and improving service delivery to customers.
Digital transformation requires that the organizations question the traditional ways businesses are run: it is a cultural change that requires organizations to continually challenge the status quo. Despite the benefits of digital transformation, organizations have been slow to integrate it into their operations. However, with the coronavirus pandemic stretching the limits of the current economic structure, businesses have little choice of options.
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Teleworking, otherwise known as remote working, has experienced a massive surge by organizations. In order not to fall sideways or get swallowed by the pandemic, businesses have had to adopt remote working policies. While telecommuting isn’t a new phenomenon, about 49 percent of workers never worked from home.
Despite years of advocacy to make this a benefit available to all employees, remote working was a privilege afforded only to highly placed members of the organization. In a way, the pandemic is leading a massive wave of enterprise digital transformation, business model innovations, and ultimately changing the future of work.
The on-demand and service industry, which comprises mainly retail services, does not benefit much from telecommuting. Notwithstanding, retail digital transformation has ensured that many brick and mortar stores don’t close up shop. Digital business transformation in retail embodies the necessity to change how retail operates to accommodate the continuing shift in consumers’ shopping. This transformation includes how stores are using digital technology to revolutionize in-store experiences, as well as reshaping everything from finding a local store to paying for goods without queuing up.
The on-demand economy has always been an important part of the digital transformation, and the adoption of technologies is saving some restaurants, helping them generate revenue because of retail digital transformation. After the pandemic is over, some of these restaurants might decide to become permanent Ghost Kitchens.
Digital transformation in healthcare has also been accelerated during the pandemic. Now more than ever, the positive impact of technology is highly needed in healthcare. These technologies include the use of telemedicine, artificial intelligence enables medical devices and blockchain technology for keeping hospital records. The coronavirus will hasten the adoption of digital transformation in healthcare.
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