Work from home culture an opportunity for IT services

09 April 2020 3 min. read

The current ‘work from home’ culture forced upon people due to the Covid-19 crisis will drive significant benefits for providers of IT services, according to PwC partner Mohammad Chowdhury.

“Covid-19 will accelerate the shift to digitalisation,” said Chowdhury, who leads PwC’s Technology, Media and Telecommunications (TMT) practice in Australia. While the need for remote working is the obvious trend, the expert said that a range of other aspects of business will see an accelerated move toward digital channels.

“Transition journeys that were going to last a few years will now be forced into happening in a few months.” This in turn means that IT services and tech consulting firms are likely to prosper, as companies will need their products and services to transition, as well as manage their digital environment.

The scope and speed of these benefits, meanwhile, depends on the type of firm and the nature of services provided. For instance, services that are immediately and directly beneficial for work-from-home conditions are likely to see an instant spike in business. Video-based communication platforms such as Zoom or Teams are likely to see an imminent increase in consumption.

Work from home culture an opportunity for IT services

Another example provided by Chowdhury is ecommerce. Australia’s online commerce environment was already a bright spot before this crisis. While a number of other sectors (restaurants, travel, etc) have seen revenues slashed by the latest conditions, Kantar recently reported that e-commerce activity in Australia has maintained its levels, if not increased, in the last two weeks, with some segments seeing surging demand.

These are short term winners from the current crisis. There will also be long term winners from the current crisis, said Chowdhury, referring to the advent of industry-grade tech into people’s home lives as they adapt to work from home conditions. Once these changes are made, according to Chowdhury, they are likely to persist. He puts forward internet packages as an example.

“Your typical broadband package in a lot of countries is 25 or 50 megabytes per second but what you will now find is a lot of households and companies will up their speed. Most of them will stay there, they won’t necessarily go back and I think the same will happen with usage of other technologies. That means certain industries should be seeing sustained growth beyond this crisis,” he explained.

Chowdhury’s predictions offer some silver lining, as he joins other experts in working out the sectors that will win out from current circumstances. A leading risk expert in Australia recently explained how risk advisory firms might also be in high demand in the near future. These are glimmers of hope amid a largely damp economic outlook, as experts predict billions in economic damage from the present crisis.