How coronavirus can have an impact on product development
The COVID-19 pandemic has been spreading since December last year and it’s showing no signs of stopping any time soon. The most important consequence of this disease is, of course, the trail of death it’s leaving in its wake. But things do get worse because that’s not the only thing that the coronavirus has affected. Consequences of the pandemic are being felt in media, politics, and economy. Because of this, business owners must take the pandemic seriously. And believe it or not, the coronavirus can have an impact on product development as well. Even if you and your employees are lucky enough not to be infected, the measures you take to ensure this safety will change how your business operates. But don’t worry – Frontech Solutions EU is here to prepare you for how to deal with this!
Important information about staying safe during the pandemic
Before we start talking about how coronavirus can affect product development, let us remember that the most important thing at this time is to stay safe and healthy. We don’t know as much as we would like to about this virus because it is so new. Research has so far mainly focused on its prevention and cure.
But what we do know is that it spreads incredibly fast, causes respiratory issues and can be dangerous for certain groups of the population (namely, the elderly and immunocompromised). So far, the educated guess is that around 80% of the cases are mild, 15% are severe and about 5% are critical. The mortality rate seems to be around 1%. If those numbers don’t alarm you, they should. Some experts suggest that between 50% and 70% of the world population will contract the disease. Even with the mortality rate of 1%, the numbers would be devastating. So take all possible measures to protect yourself and those around you:
- wash your hands regularly and with soap for at least 20 seconds
- avoid touching your face with your hands
- if you sneeze or cough, do so in your elbow or in a tissue which you will immediately dispose of
- seek medical care if you’re exhibiting flu-like symptoms (coughing, fever, exhaustion)
- if at all possible, take medical leave or work from home to avoid exposure
- maintain social distancing, avoiding unnecessary and large gatherings and self-isolate as much as possible
Remember that these measures are in place not only for your safety but for the safety of everyone around you. The World Health Organization page for coronavirus will help you stay up to date with the situation and medical advice.
The ways in which coronavirus can have an impact on product development
Even at this time, it is only natural that your business will be one of your main concerns. After all, it is your livelihood that’s at stake. And unfortunately, coronavirus can have an impact on product development, thus affecting your business and profits.
The obvious – you and your employees getting sick will put a damper on your productivity
With infection rates getting worse every day, odds are that you or some of your employees will get sick. Even though the majority of cases are mild, no one who exhibits symptoms (or even suspects that they are a carrier) should be coming into work. In some cases, people will still be able to work, only from home. But if you’re in manufacturing, for example, even PLM solutions for industrial manufacturing won’t help with the lack of actual workers. This can easily affect the speed and rate of your product development.
Safety measures related to coronavirus can have an impact on product development
The coronavirus pandemic has caused many countries to implement strict and drastic measures. These include closing down borders, enforcing curfews, shutting down non-essential businesses, discontinuing public transportation and even total quarantine. It’s fair to assume that wherever you are, you’ll be facing some of them as well. They may affect the availability of your workers and facilities as well as deliveries both to and from you. However, it’s service and tourism that will likely suffer the most due to social distancing and quarantine. Try to use your PLM software for the service industry at this time to come up with new ideas or processes. Otherwise, you may suffer serious losses.
Coronavirus can have an impact on product development by affecting the economy at large
The global pandemic has already had an effect on the world economy. With businesses shutting down and the stock market at a low we haven’t seen since 2008, experts are predicting a recession of still unknown proportions. Unfortunately, this will almost definitely have an effect on your business as well. Like 10 years ago, you may have to scale down product development and even lay off workers. But let’s hope it doesn’t come to that!
Prolonged stress of the uncertainty of the situation will impact employees and customers both
In the scramble to maintain physical health, mental health has recently taken a backseat in our minds. However, the stress and anxiety of the ever-evolving situation, as well as the negative effects of isolation, can have an effect on product development. Unmotivated employees and unmotivated customers never did any business any good.
Dealing with the effects of the coronavirus pandemic
Now that you understand how coronavirus can have an impact on product development, you may be wondering what to do about it. Right now, we are still living in a pretty uncertain period. So all you can really do is try to prepare as best as you can and do everything you can to stay safe!
Prepare in advance
It’s hard to prepare for anything when you don’t really know what is coming. But after gathering information on the virus and how people are dealing with it, you will at least know what to expect. You may then be able to, for example, use apparel PLM software to develop business processes that cut out all non-essential physical steps of product development. This could help you maintain production even under partial quarantine. The benefit of being able to follow the entire textile industry product lifecycle is that you can strategize for different things on all levels so get creative!
Get your priorities straight: safety first!
It is of vital importance to remember that while coronavirus can have an impact on product development, it definitely will have an impact on people’s lives and health. So always remember that your safety, the safety of your employees, your customers, your community and the world at large are the number one priority right now. So do everything you possibly can to ensure the health of yourself and the people around you. Remote work, paid sick leave and working with a skeleton crew in the office may not be your ideal conditions. But they can save lives and that must come first.