From Virtual Work to Vaccines: The Different Roles That Technology Plays During the Pandemic

A lot has happened in the past year. Some of these things we cannot even explain to ourselves. How did our lives stop suddenly and how can we restart? Where are we going right now? Is there any certainty in the future? Can we find some sense of comfort in the past year that here we are, still standing and still fighting? The truth is that the world barely survived such a turbulent time in all of our lives. Governments scrambled and economies collapsed. There is still much work to be done even when parts of the world are transitioning to the new normal.

In the midst of all these is technology and all the power it harnessed and distributed during the past year. People became so dependent on technology on everything—from ordering food, buying medicines, connecting with their loved ones, finishing their projects, marketing to customers, and getting as much information as they can about the vaccines now available. The reliance on technology has become unprecedented, so much so that industries and sectors will be lost without digitalization and the reach of the Internet.

Understanding Protocols and Vaccines

People used technology to understand more about how the health protocols will keep them safe from contracting the virus. They also used the Internet to understand how the vaccines are being made and what effect this might have on their health. The good thing is that health experts and vaccine developers were more transparent in the past year than they were before. They talked about how social distancing, masks, and frequent handwashing can reduce the transmission of the virus. Then, they also explained the role of mRNA and live attenuated virus in the vaccines.

Even these COVID-19 vaccine and drug developers used the help they get from technology. They were able to use an ACE2 binding assay inhibitor screening produced by a third-party service to determine how the development of molecules can occupy the host cell’s ACE2 receptors to block the virus. Among many other things, the availability of these kits made it easier for pharmaceutical companies and medical researchers to screen new drug candidates against COVID-19.

Staying Socially Distant

People are social creatures by nature. They are not born to be on their own, alone in the house with no one to talk to but dear old Alexa. Technology, fortunately, made it easier for them not to mingle with anyone outside their household in the past year. If they had to go to the grocery or pharmacy, they only had to pick up their smartphones and pick a courier of their choice. App developers were quick to roll out services that will connect the public to small businesses around the area.

Aside from that, smartphones, laptops, and computers also allowed people to connect with each other. They celebrated milestones and special occasions via teleconference. Mothers gave birth to their children while the rest of the family waits virtually to see the new member. Technology connected people at a time when they need to be with each other but cannot.

Learning and Working Virtually

Is there a better use of technology than to earn and learn? Since a lot of businesses had to close down in the past year, many transitioned to a work-from-home setup. Those who lost their regular jobs found new work on the Internet. Companies that outsource workers from all over the world are the trailblazers for it. Remote work setups are nothing new for these companies, and other more traditional companies have followed suit.

Students are also learning from virtual classes. Though the loss of social connection with their classmates is still a blow, teachers and students are making the most out of their virtual lessons. Sure, some schools are reopening but in many parts of the world, this is still not possible.

Marketing and Reaching out to Customers

As businesses open their e-commerce stores, they also have to reach out to their customers virtually. Traditional marketing methods may not be dead, but they sure are dying. Digital marketing will soon be the norm for all businesses. If you do not invest in digital marketing today, you will lose a good chunk of your existing clientele.

Companies are using social media and the Internet to reach new target audiences. They are using the comment section to retain old and loyal customers. These are nothing new, of course, but businesses are more persuasive than ever as they finally realized how important customer engagement is for their company.

How would the world have survived the past year if not for technology and all the benefits it brings? Though there is a lot of misconception and misapprehension about the dangers of technology, especially for little kids, one cannot deny how it kept everyone sane during the pandemic. That alone should be reason enough for people to thank their lucky stars that the pandemic happened during the Internet age.

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