Business & Career Opportunities Post Covid-19
Only positive thing which has happened in 2020 is that we could able to add few new words and phrases like Quarantine , Epidemic Pandemic, lockdown, Isolation, Sanitizers, Respiratory System, Ventilators, Social Distancing, Flattening the Curve etc. in our English Vocabulary. First quarter of 2020 is gone and we are surely heading towards uncertain and unpredictable future not only in business, commerce and economy but in every walk of life. More than 2.3 lacs people have already succumbed to disesase and over 33 lacs people across the globe, have been struggling to recover from deadly Covid-19. Every hour these numbers are changing. Not only developing counties even developed countries like France, Italy, Germany, US, UK, Spain are finding it difficult to contain the spread of this Virus. Situation is no different in India , already more than 1100 people have died and over 32000 people are infected. 130 Crore people of India are behind the closed doors for last 40 days and in all probability, restrictions will remain same in near future.
Pandemic Covid-19 is a different crisis altogether as it is related to a person’s health and leads to sickness and death of the people.Lockdowns which are necessary to contain the virus, have stopped economic and manufacturing activities and exacerbated human suffering. There is no doubt that,Covid-19 will have a catastrophic effect on world as well as the Indian economy. The Indian economy’s hopes for moderate growth in 2020 have suddenly collapsed.
Business sectors like Aviation, Entertainment ( Multiplexes, Amusement Parks), Tourism, Automobile ( Passenger & Commercial Vehicles), Auto Components, Gems & Jewellery, Hospitality, Real Estate, Handicrafts, Branded Clothes, Luxury goods, Transport, Electronics etc. will have a severe impact because of the Covid-19 pandemic and negative sentiments arising out of it. Unfortunately IT, ITes, Banking and BPO industry may suffer from collateral damages because of slowdown in the above mentioned sectors. Several firms will go out of the business and millions of people across the globe will loose their livelihood. Severity of the problem can be gauged by the fact that the International Labour Organization is predicting that 1.6 Billion workers in the informal sector may lose their jobs in the coming months.
Every crisis has a silver lining in it and Business leaders, Entrepreneurs and Professionals have the ability to spot favourable opportunities in these otherwise disastrous business arena.
Here,I have collated five business opportunities which have emerged in India because of Covid-19.
1. Medical Equipment’s, Devices and Accessories:
Biggest opportunities which are likely to emerge due to Covid-19 is in Medical and Health Care sector. A large number of Medical equipment’s and devices like Stationary Ventilators, Mobile Ventilators, Thermal Scanners, Hazmat Suits, Personal Protective Equipment’s (PPE’s), Disinfection Tunnels, Isolation beds will be required. Apart from these products, there will be huge demand for Face Masks, Body Masks, Sanitizers, Covid Testing kits in local as well as International Market.
Companies like Tata, Mahindra & Mahindra and Hyundai India have already received approval for prototype of ventilators and now regular production has started. Vendor base of these companies are also engaged in supplying various components and parts of Ventilators.Noida based , Agva Healthcare is ramping up capacity of making Portable Ventilators ( That run on atmospheric air without the need for compressed air ) from 150 to 20,000 units per month. Interestingly the cost of this portable ventilator is approximately one fifth of imported one. Pune based My Lab Discovery Solutions has developed India’s first Covid testing kit within 6 weeks. My Lab has been planning to make 20 Lacs kits per week. In response to Covid-19 crisis, India has opportunity to build huge Medical and Health care sector that is innovative,Cost & Quality conscious and can be scaled up to meet global demand.
Face Masks and Body Masks will be another market segment which can be explored. It seems Face-Mask will become an integral and compulsory part of our apparel and colourful and designer masks may get entry in the wardrobes of Indian men and women. Around 200 odd companies in Tirupur of Tamilnadu have received orders worth $ 2 Billion for Face-Masks and Body-Masks from the domestic market.
2. Online Teachers/Coaches/Counsellors/Consultants:
With the closures of Schools, Offices and Manufacturing plants, students and employees have received first hand experience of E- Learning and Work From Home ( WFH). With the help of Google Meet or Zoom Apps, students are attending on-line classes.In all probability schools will be last one to open post Covid-19 as it will be very difficult to implement social distancing and other virus mitigating measures in schools. Students will need to learn through digital gadgets and Apps.
Online Teacher, Coaches and Experts will be in great demand in coming days.Online learning will be more cost effective and convenient for students and schools may have to rationalize fees structure to suit wide spectrum of society. in last couple of months subscriptions of apps related to online education like Byju’s, Khan Academy, Vedantu, Unacademy has increased quite substantially. Freelance teachers and Coaches, who are providing education through You Tube video’s have been garnering more viewers in this lockdown period.
“Coaching Factories” of Kota and Hyderabad will also need to re-calibrate their business strategies as throngs of students who have been hitting these cities every year will come to a halt. These coaching institutes may have to opt for 100% online learning and class room teaching may be a thing of the past.
Covid-19 will have direct impact on business and Jobs. Number of small, medium and large sizes manufacturing companies will be closed down because of bleak or no demand of the products, they are making. Employees at the all the levels will be laid off or the salary will be slashed. Unfortunately a large number of people may find it difficult to handle this economic, social and emotional pressure.
This will lead to increased cases of people having Hypertension, Anxiety, Depression, Insomnia, Mental disorder or Behavioural changes. Demand for Psychologists, Psychiatrists and Counsellors will increase considerably. In this uncertain and tumultuous times, people will tend to keep themselves mentally and physically strong and for that Yoga, Meditation and Pranayam Teachers may be a great help. Interestingly, all these professionals can provide their services, online in India as well as in International market.
3. E-Commerce and Online Business:
There will be paradigm shift in the purchasing habits and behaviour of the customers post Covid-19. People will be afraid to go for shopping in Malls, Retail stores or even near by Kirana stores in coming months. Not only in metro cities even in small cities and towns also, customers will prefer to purchase most of the daily necessary products through online portals. Small retailers and Kirana stores will have to upgrade themselves to capture this market. Perhaps they will have to opt for hybrid business model of online as well as offline ( Brick and Mortar stores). Online business is still at nascent stage in India and lot of business opportunities are there in this segment. The Confederation of All India Traders ( CAIT) has taken a right step in launching a national e-commerce market place for all the retails across the country named “ Bharatmarket” in collaboration with several technology partners. CAIT is planning to enroll around 10 Million retailers on this platform.(More details on https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/350078
4. Website/App Developers & Digital Professionals:
With the shifting of business, offices,Schools, Services etc. to online platform, demand for IT professionals who are specialized in Website/App development will increase.Digital professionals who have good experience in Digital Marketing, Social Media Marketing, Video Editing, Content writing, Photoshop etc. will get more opportunities in the fast changing business environment.
5. Agri Business and Focus on Small Cities:
A large number of migrant labourers and workers have already gone to their respective villages and towns and those who are still stranded in big cities will also go at first available opportunities. Bringing back these labourers for work will be a daunting task as they would prefer to remain with thier families or near and dear ones. Closure of Industries and job losses will force many people to explore job or business opportunities in Tier2/Tier3 cities and villages, where cost of living is still low as compared to big cities.
Since March, over 90% employees of India’s nearly 4 million working force have shifted to work from home model and are delivering services to clients globally. IT giant TCS has already announced that by 2025, only 25% workforce will be working in offices. This tectonic shift in policy will definitely lessen the infrastructure pressure on cities like Bangalore, Pune, Gurgaon, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Chennai etc. If IT professional has to work from home then it will not make any difference whether he is living in Pune or Udaipur. IT companies may have to open small campuses in Tier2/Tier 3 cities to attract local workforce. This will give much needed boost to economy of small cities.
Agriculture sector will see major transformation as qualified and young professionals may explore new opportunities in agriculture related business. With innovation, Mechanization, Out of the box thinking and new ideas these professionals can give new direction to agriculture sector which is hitherto neglected. Organic Farming, Floriculture ,exotic vegetables & Herbs farming may create new markets in food & medicine industry.
So far India has done far better than many other countries in handling the Covid-19 crisis. Given the magnitude of the coronavirus pandemic and its spread across the world it is certain that world order related to economic and political preferences will change. China has lost it credibility in the international market, European countries are no longer cost competitive in the global market, African countries are nowhere in reckoning and US is not preferred destination for the manufacturing. India Story is still strong and relevant and with government support and favourable economic and financial policies, Indian economy will bounce back with vengeance in next couple of years. The resilient and perseverant nature of Indians will enable them to unlock new opportunities in their business and careers even during a crisis such as this deadly pandemic.
Looking forward to have your comments and feedback.
Disclaimer : This blog is based on my discussions with business leaders, Professionals and Entrepreneurs and media reports are considered to validate the facts.
Nitesh Kataria is a Marketing Professional, Blog writer and Motivational speaker. He can be reached out at 9822912811 or firstname.lastname@example.org