We have done it, 2020 is finally over. As we transition into 2021 it is important to think about new ways your business will find success whether it be marketing, financing or hiring. The world has changed drastically due to the spread of COVID-19. This has caused many businesses to close, some cut their store hours or employees and others have found new ways to continue selling their goods and services. Some trends we saw develop as a result of the global pandemic will continue into 2021. The world may never return to what it was before 2020, but there are trends that companies have incorporated in order to build upon their success.
Remote working played a huge role in business due to COVID-19 in 2020 and will continue to be utilized in 2021. Many businesses have given employees the option of either working remote, in the office or a mixture of both. Video software companies such as Cisco Webex and Zoom saw large increases in users as a result of the global pandemic and will continue to experience success in 2021 as employees continue to work from home. Before COVID-19 hit the United States, much of the workforce worked away from home but as 2020 continued the number of remote workers has drastically increased. Now in 2021 there are lists of companies offering flexible remote jobs, something new we would not have seen if COVID-19 never occurred. It’s looking like remote jobs are the way to go for many in 2021, but it comes with a long list of learning adjustments, time management skills and independent reliability if it’s going to work.
Automation will continue to impact the world in 2021. Businesses are taking the time to look into each process to see which employees add value to the company and which ones could potentially be replaced by machines. Minimal human assistance will thrive in 2021 for a variety of businesses, allowing them to develop new production processes and implement new technology to offer a wide range of products. This will likely help companies cut back on costs and improve product efficiency but it may ultimately increase the unemployment rate. Millions of jobs will be in jeopardy as a result of automation, making this technological process a huge debate for the coming years. A few trends we may see this year include privacy implications, robotic testing (expanded) and RPA (robotics process automation). New service sectors such as retail and cybersecurity will begin to work closely with automation to cut costs in certain areas and expand or create new production methods for gathering and analyzing information. For the masses, we will see an improvement in the online shopping experience for both retailers and consumers. Retailers will be able to generate more revenue and gather information while consumers will find the online shopping process to be much easier. Consumer feedback will be one of the many uses for automation for retailers this year.
Social media played a major role in 2020. It became a place where users could share stories, voice their opinions and create new and interesting content for millions to view. Companies will look to take advantage of this in 2021 by building up their social media platforms choosing to engage with users on a more personal level than ever before. With the growing number of users and influencers on apps such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and TikTok, companies will focus on partnering with these individuals and working on ways to promote their products and services in 2021.
Going along with a greater social media presence, businesses are going to work locally to build their community engagement in 2021. Millions of Americans were encouraged to shop locally and businesses have worked hard and will continue to retire international operations and focus on local production. Small businesses will play a huge role in 2021. Many are choosing to shop small and support their local shops. This will increase heavily as we enter 2021 as these local businesses find more ways to stay active in their community and promote their goods and services through social media and blogs. It’s amazing to see supportive trends flow through 2020 and into 2021. Small business appreciation is being recognized on a global level and can be spread quickly as a result of social media exposure. Just recently the Major League Soccer team, FC Dallas released a program targeting supporting small businesses owned by black or minority individuals. In local newspapers, students in certain towns have gathered together to create programs to help aid their favorite local businesses. Digital media company, Barstool Sports has been in the news recently for their local small business fundraiser donation of $100,000. Communities will continue to work together, creating fundraisers and programs aimed at supporting local businesses. This buzz will also lead many companies and celebrities to donate as well. The power of social media is strong and has been proved within the first two weeks of the new year.