The world may suddenly have embraced digital technologies more fervently than ever in light of the COVID-19 health crisis, but many companies in the tech sector have been negatively affected. As found in the Deloitte report “Understanding the sector impact of COVID-19,” two hard-hit sectors include the hardware/software sector and semiconductors, owing to supply disruptions and delivery delays. Of course, other sectors (including IT services and teleconference software companies) have fared better, owing to a major surge in the demand for cloud infrastructure services, communications equipment, and 5G equipment. If your business focuses on tech, what steps can you take to ensure you survive and even thrive in the new normal?
Guaranteeing Staff Safety
The first step when it comes to keeping a business open is to protect staff; to ensure that premises are professionally cleaned by anti-virus specialists, who know how to both clean and disinfect surfaces. The COVID-19 virus can last for as long as nine days on some surfaces, according to the CDC. Therefore, clean-up procedures must be comprehensive. In addition, offices may require structural changes – including the division of work spaces, the placement of transparent separators between staff and customers, and the designation of different flows of movement for different departments.
Tech companies must identify current and possible disruptions to the electronic value chain, which in turn can impact their ability to deliver final products such as automobiles, smartphones, computers, and the like. As stated by KPMG, doing so involves a multifaceted approach that can include diversifying suppliers geographically. For instance, Apple supplier Wistron Corp. is planning to move half of its capacity to China and is currently setting its eye on Vietnam, Mexico, and India. Additional steps include building micro supply chains which are able to thrive independently of each other, sourcing the same component from more than one company, and continually revising supply chain strategies to ensure they are growing alongside the company’s needs.
Planning for a Potential Decrease in Demand
The effects of the current health crisis are likely to affect most industries for many years to come. It is therefore vital that companies plan for a lower demand while innovating in areas that may become more necessary. A few tech industries currently booming include those focusing on cloud storage, IT services, ed-tech, online gaming, and medical technology. Companies already providing similar services can consider restructuring their businesses operations to incorporate one or more in-demand products or services.
When it comes to surviving hard times ahead, innovation, planning, and flexibility will be vital. Tech companies should focus on asking key questions such as whether or not necessary structural or procedural changes are required. They should also have a firm supply strategy in place so as to reduce the impact of supply disruptions. Finally, they should invest time and research into innovating and improving their products or services so as to be more in tune with current demand.