Covid-19 Impact and Opportunities

Blog 29 Apr 2020 . Brianna Kerr
Prabhat Mishra
Director – Shared Service Center Bangalore

In the past 90 days, the world has adjusted to a new reality. Our new normal, caused by an invisible threat that has forced much of the world’s population to learn new methods of living and working. Social distancing is becoming standard practice for mankind and virtual connectivity more familiar than ever.

As we endure these times of such uncertainty, we must look to the future through a positive lens of opportunity. As businesses reopen and people return to work, there will be a renewed sense of purpose and collective effort to reestablish both ourselves as individuals, and the organisations we support. Business will look different than before the pandemic. Telework will remain prominent, business travel will resume but on a smaller scale and workers will explore more gig opportunities, continuing on with projects they may have started during furloughs or reduced work. The unexpected shift brought about by COVID-19 is a people-first, business-second mentality. 

Opportunity Spotlight: India’s Rise & Shine Year 2021

Amid this global crisis, India could bring new hope of recovery once the outbreak is brought under control. The IMF has indicated that India will grow 7.4% during the fiscal year starting in April 2021. However, local government and every citizen must ensure that measures are made successfully, including lockdown and maintaining social distancing. While China recovers from the widespread crisis impacts, India has an opportunity to become the new manufacturing hub for the world. Regions like Bangalore, Hyderabad and Gujrat are likely to see a fresh stream of investments from companies as demand resumes and supply chains are reignited.

Lesson learned from the Pandemic:

This pandemic has taught us to be agile and reinforced that we all have a part to do in changing how this story ends. We must focus on what is important – the health, wellness and mental-being to persevere through challenging times and look for opportunities to come out on top. We have learned an abundance of knowledge and ways to manage during COVID-19. Here are my key takeaways: 

Virtual management and technology can reduce unnecessary travel, spend and risk.

Remote working and rotational shifts are going to be the new normal for years to come and we’ve learned that, in most settings, virtual work is just as successful as onsite operations for most businesses today. By reducing business-related travel, we are able to spend more time at home with family and friends while still meeting virtually with clients, prospects and suppliers to build and nurture those relationships. Remote work also reduces the risk for contagious spread of illnesses such as COVID-19. Until a cure is found, we must continue to reduce the risk of spread through social distancing and quarantine.

Clear and repeated communication is critical.

Communication is key to staying connected and informed. At Pontoon, we’ve had weekly business updates, shared continuity plans, socialised video updates from our senior leaders and collaborated in small group discussions with our President, Corinne Ripoche. This transparency and real-time information sharing have kept our Pontoon community informed and confident in the decisions being made and the direction we are taking. 

Additionally, in a time of limited interaction and contact with family and friends, staying connected through virtual platforms has helped keep our minds at ease by feeling less isolated.

Early adoption makes a significant difference.

As countries and companies reacted to the onset of COVID-19, those that took swift action were better prepared for dealing with the impacts to business and life.  Taking these actions early on has resulted in flattening the curve quicker than expected and a successful move to virtual operations.

Follow along to read my upcoming blog on how India will emerge stronger in a post-pandemic world.


For more information on Pontoon’s COVID-19 preparedness, visit our Coronavirus hub: pontoonsolutions.com/en/covid19-hub

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