As companies consider the next phase of their operations, many have realized that plans to revert back to their traditional infrastructure are no longer available. Taking to account, a recent Garter Survey has found that 88% of companies have employees working from home, and nearly all (97%) of organizations have canceled work-related travel. The need for technological innovation within your company is undeniable. But the good news is that cloud technology offers the ideal vehicle to help your business grow amid global and organizational change.
In this article, we will show you how can technology change the way we work and shape a “New Normal” for all of us.
1. Social Distancing & Work From Home
A recent Harvard study estimates that social distancing restrictions are likely to remain in place long-term. “Researchers from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health have warned that, in the absence of a vaccine or an effective treatment of the coronavirus, social-distancing measures may be required through to 2022,” reported CNBC. That was back in 2020; fast forward till today, even though we already have an abundance of vaccines, we still have to face social distancing in many countries.
However, businesses are edging closer to reopening, which means remote work models may become a permanent work condition for many companies, along with the dilemma of personal engagement versus encounters that can best be conducted online. “The comfort of being in the presence of others might be replaced by a greater comfort with absence, especially with those we don’t know intimately,” said Deborah Tannen, a professor of linguistics at Georgetown University.
“Instead of asking, ‘Is there a reason to do this online?’ we’ll be asking, ‘Is there any good reason to do this in person?'”
In fact, flexible schedules were on the upward trend even before the COVID-19 crisis, with experts estimating that almost half (44%) of today’s workforce had transitioned to a remote work environment over the last five years.
The need for automation that enables employees to access data anytime and from anywhere has gained exposure over the past few months and has boosted cloud computing use across the board. Experts estimate that the cloud computing market is set to reach $295 billion by 2021.
“Businesses are using the cloud effectively to create resilient and disaster-averse systems anywhere across the globe to cater to a remote workforce and protect data and business application integrity as well,” reported MarketsandMarkets in the press release linked above. And nowhere is that more apparent than in tracking your customer’s buying cycle.
2. Billing Agility & Flexibility
The key to staying competitive in your industry needs more than just providing a great product & a successful marketing campaign; it requires efficiency. The fact is, your business simply cannot compromise on using a system that is quick to adapt to market changes and ensure your customer’s experience is secure by providing a hassle-free, accurate and rapid response to their expectations.
For many companies, CPQ (configure, price, quote) fulfilled those needs. According to a Gartner 2019 report, almost half (40%) of B2B e-commerce websites used CPQ tools to calculate and deliver product pricing. And they predict a market with an annual growth rate of 20% in 2020.
One of the reasons why CPQ is so effective is that it caters to an off-premise billing system that doesn’t rely on a traditional infrastructure. These no-touch billing capabilities mean the customer’s invoice is automatically matched against a supporting document, such as a purchase order or contract, and sent for payment with no need for physical, manual handling.
The advantages? Shorter lead time for customers and less data entry for your sales and finance teams. And by providing a central hub, users can access CPQ from any platform and coordinate with coworkers and customers from all over the world.
The broad adoption of “remote” processes – telework, telemedicine, virtual schooling, e-commerce, and more – is growing. In 2025, there will be more people working from home, more virtual social and entertainment interactions, and fewer forays in public than has been in the case in recent years, especially in a post-Covid-19 world when people have already realized and recognized the potential of working remotely.
4. Key Takeaway
One of the great questions constantly being asked is what the “new normal” will look like after the pandemic. In his new book Ten Lessons for a Post-Pandemic World, Fareed Zakaria sums it up by saying that life after the pandemic “is going to be, in many aspects, a sped-up version of the world; we knew.” And this is also applicable to technology and its role at the onset of the pandemic. The pandemic accelerated the adoption and implementation of many technologies that would have taken years, if not decades, to become mainstream.