Products That Count is thrilled to welcome our latest product excecutive contributor, Felipe Gasparino, Director of Product Development at Jostle. This article is the first release of an analysis of the technological benefits reaped over the last years, and what product managers need to look out for moving forward. Create your product profile here on Products That Count to connect directly with Felipe and other product leaders driving forward the product conversation.
It’s been more than a year since the novel COVID-19 was declared a pandemic and impacted the entire world, forcing us to live what we call a “new normal”. It changed the way we work, the way we communicate, it affected our home, and still has been testing our resilience in many ways. Let’s pause for a moment and discuss how technology helped us remain sane (for the most part) during this time.
Tech was pushed to its limits this year
Many digital products, and technology in general, were pushed to their limits, showing the world how they can enable us to go beyond. Without much notice, the digital space got crowded like never before. It had to scale and adjust to accommodate all the activities we could no longer do in person. It was the opportunity for tech to shine, and it did, helping us to keep living our lives. Zoom is the perfect example of a product that skyrocketed and had to quickly evolve its teams and product to support the new demand of being the online space for work, school, happy hours, and a lot more. DoorDash is another product that boomed and had to find ways to adjust quickly to win the race to become the top delivery provider.
WFH – Remote working went mainstream during the pandemic
While remote working was already gaining traction before COVID, “work-from-home” (WFH) became the norm way sooner than anyone expected. While companies and individuals were not quite ready, technology was prepared for it. Imagine having to go through WFH 10 years ago – devices weren’t nearly as powerful, network connection even worse. Not to mention all the amazing products that only surfaced in recent years. How would meetings be hosted without Zoom? or collaboration be done in docs without Microsoft 365 and Google Docs? Thanks to these products and many others highlighted in the Product Awards 2021, we were able to stay productive far from the office and keep doing our best work. While connecting live was missed, the global push made it clear that working remotely works, has benefits, and is here to stay.
The positive impacts on conservative sectors
The impact on more conservative and rigid sectors is even more noticeable. Education, for example, hasn’t evolved quickly enough to adjust to the modern age we live in, but when programs were forced to remain online, schools, teachers and students had to adapt and education portals like Google Classroom skyrocketed last year.
Another example is the medical field. Face-to-face medical visits, especially in hospitals, were unsafe, helping make remote appointments a lot more acceptable than they used to be. For a sector that is often behind with many late adopters, the pandemic forced it to challenge its rules and adopt new technology. Telus Health, a Canadian provider of digital healthcare solutions, has seen exponential growth for its virtual demand during the pandemic. While online appointments don’t always replace the in-person experience, it can be safer and more convenient in some situations. I hope the sector keeps challenging its regulations and that it continues to evolve with technology.
What’s next? Emerging new growth opportunities
While I’m grateful for what technology has allowed us already, I wonder what are the next advancements that will enable the “hybrid life” – the future new normal. An easy example is the need for better laptop cameras, but what’s beyond that? In the next article, I’ll explore exactly which emerging products and technologies to watch as we potentially enter a hybrid version of this new norm.
Let’s keep building great products that help others
Technology is more important than ever. It helped us survive the difficult times of the pandemic and become even more pivotal to our lives. That alone is great evidence and motivation to keep advancing it, and to continue building great products so we leave the world a better place.
What’s your experience with technology during the pandemic? Any new or favorite products that helped you to keep sane during the pandemic? Let us know in the comments section.
About the speaker
Product-driven, result-oriented tech director, committed to growth and passionate about building tech products that are impactful and amuse its users. Experienced in developing product strategy, leading development & product teams towards product vision, and in directing and managing project implementation.