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The world during and after COVID-19

Enterprise Context

Enterprises across the world are attempting to see through the fog of uncertainty that’s around us today. And most understand that the future holds many challenges, both in the short term as well as in the long run. The restrictions imposed on the movement of people and goods not only curtail businesses’ access to valuable parts and raw materials, they also wipe out traditional sales and customer support channels. Businesses will have to reimagine business models in a new world that will have fewer physical and human interactions. They’ll need to adapt to be able to operate under such conditions – learn how to reach out to customers using new digital channels, figure out how to reimagine workforces and workplaces of the future, and reevaluate global supply chains. Businesses also have to manage various types of risk, while continuing to support the communities around them. Optimizing available resources for efficiency and business continuity, while investing in measures to build resilience, are crucial for survival.


A world caught off guard is now facing economic uncertainty, with financial risk management becoming a pressing concern. Companies across industries are drawing on credit lines to support working capital and stockpile cash. Financial services institutions are playing the role of systemic stabilizers, while trying to keep losses to a minimum. For them, it means a sharper focus on risk identification by detection of deterioration of creditworthiness and adjusting potential credit-risk mitigating actions for pre-delinquency, early delinquency, and nonperforming exposures, while also identifying recent spurts of digital fraud.


Most global firms have been caught off guard at how much exposure they face, owing to cost minimization strategies. From trend based demand forecasting shifting to driver based analysis, to keeping limited stock at hand, following just in time inventory management, to relying on a limited network of suppliers for parts and materials, the entire supply chain is being reevaluated. To successfully navigate this crisis, along with risk and crisis management strategies based on end to end visibility into their supply chain to understand anomalies and assessment of various risk scenarios, businesses need to execute dynamic and integrated business planning where the entire value chain is re-orchestrated.


The outbreak of COVID-19 has major implications for life, health and the world economy. It’s in times like these that organizations are expected to put purpose before profit. A number of organizations have stepped up. In addition to supporting their employees and customers, they are also working with communities, extending a helping hand, including valuable information, to those who need it the most. For brands, it’s almost as if a new baseline is forming. And soon some of these might become standard practice in CSR, as well as employee engagement. Also, in light of the environmental impact of a few weeks of shutdown, in the After-Corona world, a company’s relationship with nature and social causes will become more important than ever.


Social distancing and lockdown measures have accelerated digital adoption. Proactive and personalized customer engagement is key to building strong customer relationships during these troubled times. It’s never been more important to know how customers feel and understand consumer sentiment. Customer experience monitoring over emails, phone calls and service chats and social media listening can provide a wealth of information. Armed with this information, organizations can explore personalized next best customer engagement measures as well as new digital offerings that customers need, while supporting employee and community safety.


Shopping via e-commerce channels (direct as well as online marketplaces), which was already popular in many businesses, has now emerged as a new favorite across industries, as it effectively minimizes public exposure. More people are now shifting towards online shopping rather than in-store shopping, increasing the likelihood that spending may permanently shift between channels. Direct to consumer has never been more important. While e-commerce companies across the globe hire frantically, brick-and-mortar retailers that have invested in online channels are outpacing those who hadn’t. Digital marketing, marketing spend optimization, and product recommendation strategies can help businesses stay competitive.


The COVID-19 pandemic has changed how sellers engage with buyers. With the face to face meeting quickly becoming infeasible, digital selling is the way forward. As B2B sales cycles lengthen, slow down or disappear, sales teams will need various forms of digital support. AI-powered digital solutions can help at every step – right from sales forecasting and sales resource planning, to digital war rooms that identify opportunities, and recommend sales tactics to maximize the chances of winning every single deal.


Customer support channels and other traditionally people-intensive business operations such as claims processing or underwriting or collections, factory or shopfloor operations, audit and inspections, contract management etc. have been under severe strain, in recent weeks, due to offices and contact centers around the world shutting down. This has forced leaders to take note of the growing importance of automation. With reduced staffing and increased volumes of work, organizations across industries are looking for smart ways to boost operational efficiency. AI-powered, data-driven intelligent automation solutions can help businesses enable a digital workforce, resolve queries of customers who are desperately looking for support, and process high volumes of loan requests, claims applications etc.


Putting employee health above everything else, a majority of businesses have asked their employees to work from home. This has naturally caused disruption, impacted productivity and limited engagement with employees. At the same time, there are significant silver linings, which organizations could leverage – in Digital work, the Digital workforce and the Digital workplace of the future. There’s likely to be further transformation of work processes and systems, augmented by RPA, Analytics and AI/ ML, thereby changing how work will be done. As organizations embrace virtual working, they would have the ability to tap into a much bigger talent pool, allowing them more flexibility and agility in managing their workforce requirements. Also, with the increased adoption of technology and collaboration tools, the ‘Connected but not Co-located’ workplace of the future will look very different from what it is today.

Why partner with BRIDGEi2i?

As enterprises focus on life and business during and post COVID-19, digital seems set to emerge as the single biggest lever to reexamine priorities and reimagine business models. And AI will be at the heart of this digital transformation that companies will need to embrace, to adapt to the new normal, and stay competitive. BRIDGEi2i’s AI-powered accelerators have been successfully helping many enterprises embark on a faster journey to value realization through digital transformation, and enterprises today could derive tremendous value from these pre-built, tried and tested accelerators that lend themselves well to faster deployment. Coupled with applications on the cutting edge of AI/ML innovation, digital consulting expertise, scalable capabilities in data engineering, BI, data science and smart apps, there’s significant predictability of business outcomes and a true opportunity to maximize ROI through asset-based consulting.


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