Unless you have been hiding under a rock since March, it has been fairly obvious that the world has changed significantly thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. But it is also a time when technology has come into its own. It has literally saved lives and livelihoods. Almost overnight, millions of employees were suddenly forced to work from home, and their employers had to implement sweeping changes to their working methods to make remote working a viable option for their business.
Component producing factories in China closed, causing massive shortages, and the industry fought valiantly to keep up with demand, with many channel companies working day and night to ensure their clients could keep up and running.
Technology was crucial in the fight against Coronavirus itself, whether this was tablets used for relatives to say goodbye to loved ones, or communicate with friends and family, or for medical teams around the world to share data and treatment updates with their colleagues as they battled to beat the virus.
The pandemic has sped up the digital transformation process more than anyone could have predicted, and it has left many channel firms needing to catch up in terms of supporting more system integration, analytics and automation, particularly now the dust is starting to settle.
Future supply chains will also be under greater scrutiny in terms of sustainability and lifecycle management as more vendors build circular economy teams to tackle environmental responsibility and CSR.
So as we start to lift our heads above the parapet once more, where do we go from here? What are customers expecting from technology, and those that supply it, in this ‘new normal’? What will post-Covid workplaces look like? Where are customers in verticals such as public sector, education, retail and others placing their bets and what should the channel be doing to help them get the best results from their technology investments? And what is the channel’s role in all of this?
These topics and more will be the focus for this year’s CRN On series in association with Agilitas.