How the Pandemic Is Sparking Innovations in Tech Startups
The pandemic of 2020 has been a truly overwhelming experience for many of us. The sudden emergence of the illness, combined with its rapid ability to spread around the world meant that life changed almost overnight.
However, as terrible as this worldwide issue has been, these rapid changes have also provided an opportunity to rectify problems in the market and find avenues for growth.
Startup founders and tech professionals are using the arrival of a new world after COVID as a catalyst for innovation.
In recent months, we’ve seen the arrival of everything from state-of-the-art collaboration tools to new investments in IoT, AI, and even extended reality technology.
According to McKinsey & Company, around 90% of US executives believe that the pandemic will have a long-lasting impact on the way they operate.
So, how are tech companies staying innovative in these trying times?
Finding New Ways to Serve Customers
In the initial weeks and months of global lockdowns caused by the pandemic, many companies were overwhelmed with calls from nervous customers.
Customer service centers experienced unmanageable peaks in contact numbers, to the point where clients were spending hours on the phone just to ask a simple question.
Fortunately, tech innovators are already looking for easy ways to target this problem.
APIs and SDKs available for social media, instant chat, and other messaging services give teams another way to interact with customers more rapidly.
With the right technology, companies can add new methods of improving the customer experience to their tech stack and solve problems much faster.
Some organizations are even experimenting with automated tools, like bots that can instantly respond to common questions, to reduce some of the service queues.
Updating Buyer Personas
As the world changes with new restrictions and guidelines to follow, the preferences and priorities of customers are evolving too.
To create powerful services and products, tech innovators need to understand this transformative marketplace and build more in-depth personas for their buyers.
Software companies that used to serve small businesses in office environments are now supporting remote workers connected all over the world.
Leaders offering cloud storage solutions need to ensure that they’re delivering the same bandwidth and strong connections for employees wherever they might be.
Tech companies are taking this opportunity to re-evaluate what they know about their target audience and upgrade their information with more scope.
Work-from-home professionals, digital nomads, and people stuck in social distancing restrictions are all worthy of deeper consideration.
Addressing New Needs
Tech companies are often the brands behind some of the most inspiring solutions to common problems.
Already, businesses in the tech environment are exploring the possibilities of technologies like video conferencing with virtual backgrounds and noise-canceling components to reduce the distractions that face the average home worker in a meeting.
Elsewhere, companies are building solutions that can detect the number of people in a room, and their individual body temperatures with just computer vision.
Such technology can make it easier to ensure that employees allowed into the office are adhering to social distancing guidelines, or even spot an unwell person from a distance.
Tech groups are rapidly making this daunting environment easier to navigate, with tools for contactless payments or distance communications.
Technology is keeping us connected and productive in a complicated world.
Data Insights and New Opportunities
Tech providers are experts at adapting to agile changes in the marketplace. It’s no wonder that these companies are also on the cutting edge of innovation following the pandemic.
For instance, in an environment where people can’t necessarily interact face to face, more users are turning to their smartphones for crucial tasks.
Although smartphone use has grown rapidly over the last few years, we’re now relying on apps for more tasks than ever. This opens numerous new opportunities for businesses to glean insights into customer engagement levels, frequently encountered issues, or even new functionalities and features to implement.
Tech innovators are creating apps that make it easier for companies to collect information about their customers in a new marketplace. There are applications that help with tracking trends across a specific area, such as sales, health or buyer behavior.
Now that companies have fewer chances to interact with consumers in person, it is such tools that deliver the best customer insights.
The number of apps that allow people to access valuable tools and services on the move is skyrocketing. Businesses can therefore use these insights to come up with new ways to serve their clients better and meet new demands that came about with the pandemic.
Making Life More Comfortable
Finally, tech providers are using their innovative mindsets to create solutions that make life more comfortable, and less worrying in these difficult times.
From solutions that provide instant updates on the threat level in a certain location based on GPS tracking, to apps that allow teams to work remotely, the potential is endless.
As we head forward into a new world marked by digital transformation, we may see the arrival of even more innovative tools intended to make life easier.
Virtual reality is the future, and it will include meeting rooms and personal smart assistants that keep people productive at work when they’re operating remotely.
Innovation could affect the way we do everything in our day to day lives, from delivering remote learning experiences through VR to supporting better healthcare outcomes with AI.
Adapting to the Pandemic
As confusing and stressful as the pandemic has been for most people, it’s also worth remembering that disaster is often fuel for innovation.
Tech companies willing to examine the current marketplace and respond to the needs of changing customers will be the ones that come out ahead going forward.
We’re stepping into a brand-new landscape created by the pandemic, but tech companies have the power to shape that environment into something better.
This article was a guest post written by Ashley Wilson.
Ashley Wilson is a content creator, writing about business and tech. She has been known to reference movies in casual conversation and enjoys baking homemade treats for her husband and their two felines, Lady and Gaga. You can get in touch with Ashley via Twitter.