It is no secret that the coronavirus pandemic set businesses and individuals back from performing many of their day to day tasks, at first. But, when travel restrictions, shelter-in-place-orders, and social distancing became the indefinite norm, business and industry needed to find a way to continue operating efficiently, despite these barriers.
In December of 2019, Zoom reported a daily average of 10 million meeting participants. Five months later, as the pandemic swept through the United States and the world, more than 300 million people were participating in Zoom meetings every day. Companies began conducting day to day meetings through video platforms; conferences were converted into webinars; and team members started collaborating on work online, all from the comfort of their own socially distant locations. Because of the pandemic, industry was forced to transform the way that we think about and utilize technology to communicate.
As some begin to emerge from their stay-at-home orders and return to the office, it is hard not to wonder how this newfound sense of digital connectivity will continue to evolve.
Teleconferencing platforms make information more accessible than ever, providing education and business opportunities across the world. For months, we have been tuning into these events from home, inadvertently saving both time and money by not having to travel, buy meals, or book hotels. Moving forward, it may be tempting to register for every in-person event as they become available. However, working to manage which events in your calendar could be attended or hosted online will help companies continue to save while still reaching a larger audience.
Not only are organizations getting value out of hosting and attending meetings on a virtual basis, but operations within the office have also dramatically shifted. Without the ability to pass paper copies back and forth, programs that allow for live editing of documents have become a crucial component of productivity. What seemed like a hassle at first has now streamlined the various processes and allowed coworkers to collaborate on projects with ease, saving paper in the process.
In addition, the tools available have challenged the formal email as the only way to communicate. With companies turning to email to push messaging, video calls, social media and even the old-fashioned phone call have become pivotal tools to expanding communications.
At the end of the day, nothing beats face to face communication. However, just because we are able meet in person does not mean we have to all the time. Technology has made it possible to revolutionize the way we connect and collaborate at work, and it can continue to be integrated into our operations as an asset to our communication strategy.