Work From Home: A New Opportunity for IT Vendors and Solution Providers
There were some unexpected industry-related news stories about the COVID-19 that came from China, including the suspension of Google operations at its offices in China, Amazon restricting business travel across the China, and shut down of manufacturing plants of Apple in China. It became clear by mid-February that the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak would reach across the globe. To control the spread of the Covid-19, many companies around the world started transforming their operations and issued work from home orders to their employees – a major change that has had significant outcomes for solution providers that have had to swiftly pivot and support their clients’ demands for laptops and multiple other primary work-from-home equipment such as video conferencing services, collaboration tools, and more.
The COVID 19 pandemic forced many organizations and companies to embrace work-from-home solutions. Work from home is becoming the “new normal” and various big businesses have plans to allow most of their staff to work from home permanently, even after the COVID 19 pandemic.
Major Opportunities for IT Vendors and Solution Providers
The COVID 19 pandemic has provided an opportunity to IT vendors to assess their flexibility on remote connectivity, business continuity, and security as they look at other alternative and innovative ways to serve their customers.
Many IT vendors and solution providers have benefited from the increased requirements for their services and products generated by the COVID 19 pandemic including suppliers of collaboration tools, laptop and computer manufacturers, and cloud platform vendors like Zoom Video Conferencing and Microsoft Azure. IT vendors should look at emerging use cases in Artificial Intelligence for disease detection, tracking, and prevention. While it seems challenging time ahead for IT vendors and solution providers, it opens following three major opportunities for them to handhold the customers in the hour of crisis as a dependable companion:
1. Rescue and Recover
Many businesses are engaging in deep cost-cutting and looking for an infusion of cash. Further, as governments across the globe are lowering the cost of capital, therefore, businesses are seeking financial engineering solutions from their IT and BPO providers. The opportunities for IT vendors and solution providers for these enterprises may include:
- IT infrastructure deals (Asset-leveraged)
- Rebadging of existing workforces
- Post-M&A integration support in industry consolidation scenarios
The disruptive COVID-19 phenomenon is underscoring the need to move to alternate, digital-friendly industry models for many businesses. Many enterprises will want to speed up their digital transformation strategies for a number of reasons – to reduce the cost of customer service, to recover their lost time, and to de-risk their traditional business models.
The major opportunities for IT vendors and solution providers for alternate, digital-friendly business models may include:
- IT platform modernization
- Digital product engineering
- Digitalization of front-office functions in businesses like retail, financial services, and consumer goods.
3. Global Delivery Services
Currently, global delivery services need to secure and update their networks to enable remote working at scale, automate and modernize their data centers, move to the cloud, and develop multiple levels of disaster recovery sites. There might be even more opportunities for solution providers to establish enterprise-class home offices, security, cloud, managed services, and other solutions required for these global delivery services.
Future of Work from Home
In a research study from Stanford Professor, Nicholas Bloom, he demonstrated that work from home led to an overall 13% increase in performance and lower attrition. Many corporates are finding similar results in various recent studies. Metova, A software development company, has shown that about 50% of its employees believe that they get more work performed from home than the office. But for enterprises to be certain of this, they will have to modernize and utilize the latest digital tools that can accurately measure employee productivity. Solution providers and IT vendors see the potential for huge opportunities in security, cloud, managed services, and other solutions required in the transformed industry landscape. Along with the cloud, work-from-home solutions such as collaboration applications, virtual desktop infrastructure, laptops, and bandwidth are expected as continued bright spots even after the pandemic. Many employers are expected to keep a greater focus on work from home going forward; regardless of how long the COVID-19 pandemic remains. However, NursePrime reports that working remotely can increase stress, particularly when this work mode is for an uncertain time and suggests practicing yoga could reduce stress.