If Australian businesses hope to recover to pre-COVID-19 levels in the next few years, they must focus on growth and digital transformation.
This is the message from PwC chief economist Jeremy Thorpe, commenting on new economic modelling from PwC.
Thorpe said that the best-case scenario will see Australia recover to its former gross domestic product trajectory by 2025, accounting for the approximately A$279 billion in lost national income due to the government’s response to the virus.
However, a more passive response will see that recovery potentially take until 2030 and cost an additional A$127 billion, bringing the total cost up to A$406 billion, he said.
Thrope thinks Australian will be shocked at how fast the country can recover if it commits to growth.
“We have choices,” he told ABC News. “If we make the right ones, as a country, we can recover faster than most people think.”
Get ready for a new reality
PwC is not the only major firm that sees digital transformation as playing a key role in the new world created by COVID-19.
KPMG this month published its insight called Our New Reality: Predictions after COVID-19.
According to KPMG, there will be four stages that outline the path through recovery from the virus: Reaction, in which we are all simultaneously impacted and disrupted, Resilience, in which the virus is contained, Recovery, in which investment and consumer sentiment cautiously improve, and New Reality, in which a number of learnt behaviors become part of the new normal.
One of KPMG’s predictions for the new normal is that memories of the virus will continue to drive the digitisation agenda.
In this new normal, digital transformation will move from being a “nice to have” to a “need to have” as businesses look to build continuity and resilience.
“Fears of more regular crisis events, given our interconnected world, will provide the burning platform needed – especially for government and small to medium enterprises that have lagged in their digital transformations,” KPMG said.
In addition to the heightened importance of digital transformation, KPMG identified other key areas including; an enduring increase in remote working, a challenge to the 9 to 5 workday, a greater focus on automation, and the reinvigoration of local manufacturing.
KPMG also includes a warning for those that do not participate in the accelerated growth that is driven by the rise of digital interactions impacting both large and small enterprises.
“Our new digital and increasingly mobile-first behaviour will be sustained,” KPMG said. “Cash-constrained organisations risk being stuck in the second tier and will struggle to recover and compete.”
What are you waiting for?
In many ways, COVID-19 has simply accelerated trends that were already underway. Businesses had already seen the value of migrating operations to the cloud prior to the outbreak, but with the new work from home restrictions in place, it quickly became a necessity.
The benefits of workflow auotmation were already well-known by some leaders in the digital transformation space, but now businesses of all sizes are seeing how they can automate parts of their business, reducing costs and making them more resilient in a post-COVID-19 world.
As Australia’s only platinum partner of DocuWare, Docuworx is ideally placed to help your business progress its digital transformation.
No matter where you are in that journey, we have a solution that can help you.