It’s obvious that technology has been playing a crucial role in our work and lives during the global health crisis. From medicine to retail, the world has relied on new developments in technology to help keep people safe while also keeping sectors of the economy afloat.
Some trends in innovative technology have emerged as a result of the lockdown, and are worth keeping an eye on when considering the way that businesses will operate in the future…
Robotics & Omnichannel Delivery
Ecommerce, which was already on the rise before the pandemic hit, has exploded in the past few months. To reduce risk and contact, people are opting for online shopping and the delivery of products ranging from food to fashion.
As a result, we’re seeing tech companies flock to the industry to offer safer, contact-reduced (or contact-free) methods of delivery. Chinese ecommerce giants have started rolling out robotic delivery to send customers their online orders. Delivery drones (akin to that of Amazon Air Prime, a project still to be launched) are also being developed and tested.
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Digital & Cash-Free Payment Methods
Cash is famously unclean. It also might carry the virus. While some countries are implementing methods to clean cash before banknotes go into circulation, many are opting to encourage cash-free systems.
Digital methods such as cards and e-wallets are certainly not new. However, according to the World Bank, there are still more than 1.7 billion people who don’t make use of banking services and might not be able to rely on digital payment methods. It is anticipated that the pandemic will drive the adoption of digital payments, especially in developing countries where the internet is readily available.
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Remote & Work from Home Approaches
Some companies are working from home until the lockdown lifts. Others are implementing a full work from home (WFH) or remote-first approach. Spotify has reported that employees can work from home until 2021, and Twitter has announced that it will not be reopening its offices, allowing employees to work from home indefinitely.
When corporations jump onto movements like this, it often signifies the beginning of long-term change. We can no doubt expect to continue to see a rise in companies offering remote work on a permanent basis.
Learning is currently electronic for many students, and while there are social and economic drawbacks, having a taste of remote education is offering vital skills for distance learning in a technologically-driven age. This will have major long-term impacts on the way the schooling system works, as well as how technology is implemented in education.
The sharp incline in online learning has also impacted businesses that see the value in online skills programmes. With the concept of ‘life-long learning’ increasing in popularity as multi-skilled employees become more valuable in companies, there is a major shift towards online courses and digital programmes.
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