With the rapid spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, companies have been scrambling to adopt remote working technologies. The biggest beneficiaries of this, of course, are the developers of web conferencing systems. During the first quarter, Zoom’s daily user base skyrocketed from ten million to 200 million.
“We are in the midst of a massive shift in how we work that happened almost overnight, and we’re never going back in many ways,” said Craig Malloy, who is the CEO of Lifesize.
Let’s face it, with sudden investments in new technologies, why will companies abandon them when the virus runs its course? It does seem far-fetched. In other words, companies will likely be less focused on business travel and there will continue to be more employees who will have remote working arrangements.
Such changes will certainly have wide-ranging impacts on other tech sectors. Just look at RPA (Robotic Process Automation). The technology allows for fairly easy automation of repetitive and tedious processes.
“Demand for RPA was already very high before the world shifted to working from home,” Mike Beckley, who is the CTO and co-founder of Appian. “And while RPA isn’t a great way to help homeschool the kids, it is a great way to quickly change a legacy process. How many companies have had to adjust their paid leave and sick day policies in the last two weeks due to COVID-19? It’s easier to program a bot than to rewrite your HR and Finance systems.”
Vadim Tabakman, who is the director of technical evangelism at Nintex, believes that RPA can solve really tough problems–and quickly when managing remote workforces. “New hires can be provided with bots to help them access parts of the systems they aren’t used to yet and have trouble finding,” he said. “Imagine a new employee needs to create a new task in a CRM system they have never used. You could show them how to get there, but if it’s something they only do occasionally it may not stick. Instead, provide them with a bot that performs all the necessary clicks and keystrokes to take them to exactly to the spot they need to be in the CRM system.” – Read more