Covid-19 Vs. Digital Transformation


Published: November 3, 2020

Well, we are now entering into the eighth month of the pandemic, and this virus has had an economic effect on us all globally. Business closures, employees laid-off, tens of millions applying for employment benefits, people are losing their homes because they do not have money to pay the rent. The U.S. government denies we even have a problem but has shut down businesses due to the virus’s contagiousness. Which is out of hand, and over 225,000 Americans have lost their lives due to the virus.

The traditional way of doing business of going physically to merchants to do business, having face-to-face meetings, or even having large gatherings is all gone. We are now in the second month (November) of the fourth quarter of 2020. Traditionally, merchants take this time of the year to reconcile any deficiencies they may have in sales to close-out and have a profitable year. However, due to covid-19, everything has changed in how we do business. The traditional way of doing business deals with people actually coming into a business place known as brick and mortar to transact business dealings (buy, and sell products or services).

However, due to covid-19, the world must find a new way of doing what they currently do. Thus, here in the U.S., moving from traditional to digital was not fully achieved. Many small businesses have never learned to transition themselves from conventional to digital business formation. Some of this could be from merchants being successful in the 20th century and believing they could do the same in the 21st century, and never wanting to adopt digitalization, using computers. The existing state of affairs of the 20th century will not hold up the 21st-century entrepreneur.

Microsoft

Microsoft was founded in 1975 by two friends, Bill Gates and Paul Allen, and set up In New Mexico. Its best selling product is Windows operating systems and later brought on Office, which was a suite of office software for business users and entertainment games such as Xbox to follow. Although Microsoft does many things, they are known for developing computers and software systems and applications. In the 1990s, Microsoft had become one of the most profitable companies in the U.S., doing an excess of 2 billion dollars annually. And their most significant competitor to date is Google.

Google

Google is known as an American global technology company specializing in internet services and products. It is considered one of the five top technological firms in the U.S. Google established Sergey Brin, Larry Page in 1998 while Ph. D. students at Standford. Google, known for its search engine and other internet products (Google Docs, Google Drive, YouTube, and plenty more). Google is the most visited internet site in the world.  Google became the most valuable brand globally in 2017.

In 1991 the advent of the internet changed forever how we communicated with one another. Tim Berners-Lee introduced the World Wide Web (WWW) to the world for FREE. And with these two interrelated organizations coupled with the internet can be arguably said to have changed the world into a digital frontier that could transform us into little gods being ubiquitous where we can be at more places at one time.

Yes, many other businesses have contributed to the ushering in of digitalization. But these two have stabilized the industry with longevity; thus, the last decade in the 20th century (the 90s) was the starting point of us being able to survive this pandemic. A new way of communicating that must be learned but has the tenacity to take us into an area we had never envisioned except seen in scientific movies. New business models bring in digitalization and the gradual elimination of the old traditional way of life as we all incorporate digital.

New Industries

New industries will emerge, while others will disappear or develop hybrid models with some of the old traditional ways along with digital. The baby boomers who were not born into this new digitalization world may be the hardest to train in this new environment. Whereas the millennials (1981-1996) and generation z (1997-2012) are the generations, who are more accustomed to digitalization in their world, they use it daily. These are the new pioneers who will lead us into the future of all things being digital. Nevertheless, with training, it can be learned and mastered by us all.

Some older workers will retire or reeducate themselves to keep up, for the world has changed, and digital transformation advocated for some twenty-thirty years; now, it is here. This transformation from the paper or manual process to digital is not an easy one; however, it is a process that must be done for us all to move forward into the future. We all use this technology; the goal is to master it. For example, how many people do you know who do not have a cellular phone? These devices added with Wi-fi or internet access are mini-computers, which we all have to communicate with one another.

Thus, cellular phones, tablets, laptops, and desktops are the gateway with other peripherals entering the future. The mastering of these four devices makes it easier to co-exist in the 21st century and beyond. The pandemic from a business, social, and economic standpoint has caused us to re-invent ourselves to overcome the traditional face-to-face way of life in how we have done business and socialized in the past. Technology is our way out of mass unemployment, business downsizing, and sickness due to crowding.

Video conferencing was once for only large organizations and now can be done by all. A new way of life, but can be done and learned, and new enterprises will come out of this as we rise as we always have when we encounter some phenomenon in our way. Entrepreneurs will continue to see opportunities and move on to them when others do not. These challenging times will cause us to look deep into ourselves and find ways to do better at what we have done in the past, only quicker, more efficient, and be more productive. And this we can do if we focus on the technology at our fingertips with imagination.