The pandemic year was the most challenging phase for businesses as they struggled to stay afloat amid the lockdowns. Opening officers were fraught with danger as it elevated the risk of transmission of the virus. The biggest challenge was for traditional domains like retail and manufacturing, where remote work was beyond imagination. Thankfully, most organizations managed to survive with the adoption of technology tools and applications. Remote work emerged as a savior as it kept businesses going while keeping employees safe at home.
The worst seems to be over now, as the vaccines are here, and the virus seems to be under control. While 2021 is the year of hope and revival, the journey ahead will be long and arduous. Business owners cannot expect to get back to the pre-pandemic ways again. But technology is still the option to keep things on track and restore normalcy. The right IT choices can help you unlock growth and innovation for your business today and in the future. Before you pick the technologies to get through the new normal, you must understand how they can support recovery. Here are some insights that can help.
Sustain with automation
Getting your business back on track requires a focus on sustainability, which greatly relies on automation. Automating processes can reduce the dependence on human workers, and you can achieve more with less. It means you can carry on operations with fewer people around on the premises. Right now, it makes sense because social distancing is the need of the hour as businesses reopen. It can keep infection at bay and ensure that your business stays ahead on the compliance front.
Moreover, automation applications take over mundane tasks, so your people concentrate on growth-critical ones. As automated systems take over, the workload of employees is reduced and so are human errors. You can have more productive teams and cut costs, and both are the needs of the hour. Additionally, you have a future-ready business that can take on the challenges of the new normal.
Thrive with hybrid work models
As you strive for recovery, you will realize that the workplaces of the future are different. You cannot operate with a large number of people on the floor if you have space constraints. Additionally, there is a constant threat of resurgences, so you may have to send people home on the fly. The right IT solutions can help with hybrid work models that can keep your business thriving in the new normal. You require robust networks and apps that keep remote teams connected with on-site employees. Strong collaboration regardless of location is the key.
Going hybrid empowers the business with flexibility and scalability, both being critical to growth. Young talent is keen to join organizations that prioritize flexibility, so you have better chances of securing the best in the industry. You can scale your teams easily as there is no need to worry about accommodating more people physically. Hybrid models also help in cost-cutting, so it definitely makes sense.
Save up with outsourcing
When it comes to supporting revival with IT, you need to choose judiciously to limit the spending yet get the outcomes you want. Even as you invest in new apps and solutions, look for cost-saving opportunities where you can. It is best to opt for Custom Software Development so that you get in perfect technology fits for your business. You can pick tools with the apt feature set that suffices your needs without toppling your budget.
Outsourcing is the right option because it lets you work with experts without spending a fortune on hiring and retaining an in-house team. You can have experts working for you but need not engage them as a part of your team. Look for an outsourcing provider that specializes in custom software, convey your requirements to them, and they will have a solution for you. The best part is that they stick with budgets and timelines, so you need not worry about them.
Promote your brand with digital marketing
The role of IT will extend to every business process in the recovery phase, and marketing is no exception. Digital marketing helped businesses stay visible and connected during the pandemic, and it is here to stay. The internet will continue to be the main marketing platform in 2021 and ahead. So you cannot afford to miss out on it. Only a robust digital marketing strategy can keep the traffic coming and conversions growing in the coming years.
You will need a comprehensive digital marketing plan to keep your brand on top. Start with a website revamp if it is overdue. Cover both design and content to give it a fresh look and feel. Consolidate your ranking and traffic with a robust SEO plan. You may also invest in paid ads for quick leads to sustain your business in the new normal. Since live events and marketing are passé, keep the community growing through social media marketing. Thankfully, digital marketing strategies offer opportunities to thrive with a fraction of spending as compared to traditional promotions.
Future-proof with cybersecurity
Even as 2021 brings recovery opportunities for businesses, it is rife with cyber risks. Hackers and cybercriminals are more active than ever. At the same time, organizational data and networks are vulnerable due to remote and hybrid work scenarios. A robust cybersecurity program is non-negotiable for businesses right now. The last thing you will want to encounter at such a critical time is a data breach or hacking attack.
Going the extra mile with cybersecurity will enable you to focus on recovery as you need not worry about attacks. Since hybrid models are the need of the hour, you must rethink your security policies for the future. Employee training and security awareness can go a long way in securing your business from cyberattacks. Having a dedicated IT security team is a good idea, though you can consider outsourcing the service to save your money.
Digital everywhere is the way to go
When it comes to IT adoption in the revival phase, it needs to be an organization-wide initiative. Businesses should be willing to go digital in all operations, from production to human resource management, sales and marketing, and customer support. Missing out on any element can break the chain and disrupt operations, which can be detrimental to growth at this critical stage.
While you need technology solutions to fortify internal operations, it is not the end. You must also invest in client-facing technologies that impact customers directly. Advanced CRM solutions and call center systems, for example, can help organizations take customer experience to the next level. Right now, you must look for opportunities for digitization and invest in them right away. Early adoption of technology can give you a competitive advantage as you drive your revival plan in the new normal.
The recovery and revival phase requires you to do more with less, and every business will have to embrace this mindset today. Without any doubt, technology can be a catalyst for business recovery in the new normal. It can keep you going just as it did during the peak of the crisis. Moreover, it can drive growth and keep your business ready for the challenges that lie ahead. The crisis is still far from over, and only a future-ready business can thrive. But revival requires smart thinking even as you adopt technology to make your comeback. It is vital to pick the right solutions and ensure they deliver real value while fitting into budgets.
The author is an IT expert by profession and a writer by passion. While he works as the CTO with a reputed IT services company, he loves pursuing his writing skills as well.