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Coronavirus will bring biggest change to work since WWII: Report

Coronavirus will bring about the biggest change to the way people work since WWII as workers turn their focus to more ‘on-demand’ jobs, according to a new venture capitalist report. 

The report, put out by Silicon Valley guru Mary Meeker’s firm Bond Capital, said the nature of jobs and work in the US will likely evolve rapidly amid the coronavirus pandemic. 

While on-demand services like Uber and Lyft have been negatively impacted by COVID-19, food delivery services like InstaCart and DoorDash are aggressively bringing on more employees and providing demand to local stores and restaurants. 

‘We believe on-demand and to-the-door delivery services may be gaining permanent market share in these unusual times,’ the report said. 

‘While the benefits to consumers of on-demand services are relatively obvious, we continue to believe the importance of on-demand businesses in helping provide workers with work and flexibility is underappreciated in America.’ 

The report, put out by investor Mary Meeker's Silicon Valley firm Bond Capital, said the nature of jobs and work in the US will likely evolve rapidly amid the coronavirus pandemic

The report, put out by investor Mary Meeker's Silicon Valley firm Bond Capital, said the nature of jobs and work in the US will likely evolve rapidly amid the coronavirus pandemic

The report, put out by investor Mary Meeker’s Silicon Valley firm Bond Capital, said the nature of jobs and work in the US will likely evolve rapidly amid the coronavirus pandemic

Coronavirus has also caused labor shortages in transportation, supply chains, groceries and healthcare.   

‘We are experiencing a rapid short-term reallocation of labor not seen since experienced since WWII,’ the report said. 

With layoffs continuing in other industries, the report predicts that on-demand jobs will likely become a bigger part of the economy as a result of the current pandemic. 

‘On-demand work can allow displaced workers to sign up for work on multiple platforms and schedule hours around life commitments such as childcare and/or education,’ the report said. 

The report compares the impact of the pandemic to the San Francisco Earthquake of 1906 as a way of showing how much both have the impact to transform lives.  

After the initial impact of COVID-19, the report says people are now living in a ‘hunkered down world’ that has seen the economy coming to a halt and job losses rising rapidly. 

For many businesses 2020 will be a lost year, according to the report. 

‘It’s hard to know exactly what return to work will look like. There will be many businesses that never recover.  

‘There will be many (with both small and large tweaks) that come back, some of these stronger than ever (with some doing so in spaces that will surprise us). And there will be new businesses that would have been inconceivable just a few years ago. 

‘Businesspeople know it can take a day to shut something down, but it can take years to start it back up. For many businesses, 2020, in effect, will be a lost year and the challenge will be getting to 2021 when, ideally, many business patterns we have come to know begin to resume at some scale.’ 

The report pointed to epidemiological data that shows infections will spread without intervention and that social distancing measures work in slowing the spread.          

‘We know the two extremes, but we don’t know what will happen when we start to let down our guard. To do so, we need 100% available diagnostic testing with much faster turn-around (measured in minutes, not days),’ the report said. 

‘We need the systems and the tools to take action one step at a time, measure the impact, and iterate to find the most effective ways to contain COVID-19 until we have a vaccine.’  

The report also points to how the pandemic has shown structural flaws within the healthcare system and how it hasn’t changed much in the past 100 years. 

‘COVID-19 may be the call to arms that we need to fundamentally rethink what amounts to 8% of U.S. GDP and $1.2 trillion of federal spending in 2019 (Medicare / Medicaid / other healthcare services), representing 28% of the federal budget,’ the report said. 

It went on to note that ‘healthcare delivery in the US hasn’t changed as much as one would think since the Spanish Flu outbreak of 1918’.

‘Technology and innovation have had little impact on the primary care patient journey. Patient develops symptoms, patient visits a doctor’s office (possibly infecting others in the case of COVID-19), doctor diagnoses disease largely from outward symptoms, doctor sends patient home usually under ‘watch and wait,’ patient either recovers or escalates to the emergency room. 

‘That in-person diagnostic/treatment cycle is repeated during the ~500MM visits to primary care annually in the US, and the pattern hasn’t changed much in 100 years.’ 

The report predicts that healthcare innovation trends that are already underway, like telehealth, will only accelerate due to the current pandemic as ‘we continue the push to decentralize medicine away from hospitals and empower patients as consumers’.   

Source: Daily Mail australia

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