In early 2020 when the COVID-19 virus moved from a novel respiratory virus to a full-blown pandemic, our world got turned upside down. From major city lockdowns in New York City to San Francisco, our society took sweeping action to help slow the spread of the virus. And as we enter a new phase of grappling with this novel virus – armed with new mRNA vaccine technology – it’s useful to take a look at some of the disruptive technologies that have been born out of the pandemic that shows no sign of waning.
#1: Video Conferencing
This one should come as no surprise. As we all know video conferencing platforms like Microsoft Teams, Cisco WebEx, and Zoom have made it possible for many businesses to continue their day-to-day practices without skipping a beat. And by some striking research presented in some recent Gallup polls, nearly 60 percent of employees working in the United States are either now working fully remote, or working partially remote. That’s a huge number!
By our assessment, it doesn’t look like these platforms are going anywhere. In fact, the data now is showing that both employees and employers are embracing this remote model. Based on some recent research presented by PWC, an astounding 83% of employers now say the shift to remote work has been successful for their company and there’s resounding feedback that employees love the flexibility in remote work.
So, where do we go from here? Well, as video conferencing platforms look to provide more and more value in our everyday lives, we’re sure to see these platforms take on an entirely new form. Take, for instance, the recent Tokyo Olympics. With Tokyo in lockdown to slow the spread of the COVID-19 Delta variant, Microsoft Teams stepped in to help. While Olympian’s families were required to watch their children compete from afar, Microsoft stepped in to support remote communication between Olympians and their families via teleconferencing. It’s technologies like Microsoft Teams and other teleconferencing platforms that will continue to make life more enjoyable as we continue to uncover our new normal grappling with the novel COVID-19 virus.
Telehealth comes in at number two on our list. Over the past year and a half, we’ve seen an incredible uptick in the use of telehealth services. Platforms like Doctor on Demand, a platform that pairs patients with doctors to facilitate remote consultations, or SonderMind, a remote therapist pairing platform to facilitate remote therapy are fundamentally transforming the way individuals receive care. And to support this, researchers found an astounding 154% increase in telehealth visits during the last week of March 2020.
So, what does this mean for patients and healthcare? Well, surprisingly both providers and patients are finding remote-based care to be a major success. Today, one of the major bottlenecks for healthcare providers is in-person appointments. We’ve all experienced it. Every time we need to go to the doctor’s office, it seems to be overflowing with patients, and doctors have an incredibly hard time giving proper time and energy to their patients.
Now, telehealth platforms can ease the load. Consider a routine visit or a low-priority health concern. Now, rather than waiting for an in-person visit, these types of visits can be taken care of remotely. What’s the net result? Now patients get better faster care for low-priority health concerns and doctors’ offices are now freed up to attend to more serious ailments and health concerns.
#3: Remote Learning
Remote Learning is a space we feel is ripe for disruption. With challenges around re-opening in-person learning, and college tuition becoming an increasingly concerning financial debacle, we believe remote learning is about to shift. Today, students have a wealth of educational resources at their fingertips. From certifications to online boot camps, students are able to skill up without the formal process of a state college. Further, we’re finding that businesses are starting to hire based on skills and accolades, over the formal degree.
Our two cents, with the age of remote work, video conferencing platforms on a tear, we believe educational platforms will fundamentally change how students receive education today and into the near future.