The Covid-19 crisis has affected businesses, economies, and society. However, at the same time, it has triggered a new series of innovations. The pandemic closed most traditional options, forcing people to experiment with new solutions, places, and experiences to come out of this chaos. This ‘new field of innovation’ could be the blueprint for the decades to come, reveals the new report from Accenture.
Accenture Interactive’s global network of designers and creatives has published a series of reports. The 14th report from this series is the ‘Fjord Trends 2021’. According to this report, organizations will have the chance to embark on new territories as they incorporate new strategies, services, and experiences to meet evolving human needs.
Mark Curtis, head of innovation and thought leadership for Accenture Interactive, talked about the times after the pandemic. He said that, throughout history, after a global crisis, a new phase of thinking begins. Curtis feels that as we look to the future, a wealth of better worlds opens up in front of us. He accepts that some are scary, but he also feels some are exciting, and all of them are unexplored. The innovation expert notes that what we do now will define the rest of the century. He also mentions that businesses have the ultimate permission and space to think and do differently.
According to the report, the pandemic has given us clarity and surprises with chaos and tragedies. The pandemic has shown what is important to us and has helped in inspiring community spirit. Thus businesses have a new set of challenges: How to respond from operational and communication perspectives? How to meet consumers’ evolving expectations? And how to stretch their empathy? And all these while fighting for survival in a harsh economy.
The report has highlighted seven trends that showcase new territories for businesses, consumers, and society. Here, we walk you through these seven trends.
1. Using static control at a larger scale:
The pandemic highlighted the importance of cleanliness. It forced people and organizations to rethink cleaning habits and processes. Hence, people now not only clean a surface but also sanitize it. People have understood that, most often, dust forms on a surface due to static electricity. Hence, organizations now need to know how to get rid of static electricity. And how to keep surfaces clean.
2. Collective displacement:
The way we experience things changed in 2020. The pandemic left us with a shared sense of displacement. As a group, we collectively lookout for new ways and places to do the things we need and love to do. There have been massive changes in how we work, shop, learn, socialize, and take care of our health. Thus, brands now need to find ways to offer us new experiences to interact with people.
3. Do-it-yourself innovation:
Today, people’s talent for presenting creative ways or ‘hacks’ to solve challenges fuels innovation. Technology now plays a new role. For some people, it has become a facilitator and has boosted people’s creativity. For example, from teachers to chefs, people are using platforms like TikTok to spread their message. Everyone seeks more effective solutions. However, the notion of a brand expected to create a finished solution has become a history. Today, people want brands to create conditions for personal innovation.
4. Sweet teams are made of this:
People working remotely now live at the office. It has affected the reciprocal agreement between employer and employee. It has also affected the many assumptions around it. Questions like who decided what people wear for a work-related video call in their own homes or who is responsible for preserving home-workers’ right to privacy need to be answered. Although the pandemic won’t last forever, there is a permanent shift in the relationship between people and their work. There will be no one-size-fits-all in the future. Hence, expect plenty of prototyping in the future.
5. Liquid infrastructure:
Today, the way people acquire products and engage with services has changed. So, organizations need to rethink the supply chain and focus on points of delight, like, the immediate gratification many took for granted in store, in the last few feet before purchase. So expect more changes that are driven by sustainability.
6. Interaction wanderlust:
The time spent on interacting with the world via screens has increased. Hence, people don’t like the ‘sameness’ caused by templated design in digital experiences. Thus, organizations must rethink designing aspects, content, audience, and the interaction between them. They must infuse more excitement, joy, and uniqueness in the screen experiences.
7. Empathy challenge:
People are cautious about what brands stand for and how they express their values. The pandemic has highlighted several broken and unequal systems, like, access to healthcare and equality. Hence, companies must work hard to handle the narratives that shape their brands. Organizations have to prioritize the subjects that matter most to them and shape their behaviors around those subjects.