ICT is good
ICT services enable contact between people, even if - as during the current corona pandemic - direct physical contact should be avoided: Telecommunications companies provide the networks and the associated services that are necessary for making calls or transmitting data. Information technology (IT) service companies develop software or advise customers on all aspects of the operation of computer systems. Finally, providers of information services are specialists for websites or internet portals up to and including the complete management of customer data.
There is a right to ICT services low risk of being able to produce only to a limited extent due to the risk of infection. Wherever the presence of employees is expected, it is easy to work with appropriate distance rules. Otherwise, ICT services can largely be carried out in the home office and via video conferences. Even before the corona crisis, 85% of those employed in ICT services considered working from home to be possible in principle, and more than half of the respondents used the home office regularly or occasionally. At the beginning of 2021, the home office rate was even 75%.
ICT services are particularly in demand during Corona times; In fact, the corona pandemic has led to a certain amount of digitization in business and society. Many employees now work from home, students learn digitally, and companies want to be able to react more flexibly to changes in demand with the help of digitized production. For this, those responsible in the companies and schools have to deal with a number of technical questions, for which external IT service experts are also consulted: Is the existing Internet connection sufficient for teleworking and homeschooling on a large scale? What about IT security, especially when private devices have to be used? Etc.
However, it came about as a result of the corona crisis Loss of sales for some corporate customers. In order to cut costs, they are now cutting budgets for external IT services, among other things, and postponing planned projects that have no direct effect in terms of reducing costs, increasing efficiency, digital workplace or e-commerce. Small and medium-sized companies in the IT and information services sector in particular suffer from this, which in contrast to the large IT or management consultancies do not have a sufficiently broad portfolio to be able to react quickly and flexibly to such changes in priority.
In addition, in times of Corona Internet and mobile communications services are increasingly being scrutinized, if, for example, teleworkers now use video conferences or households with streaming services cause immense data streams. In any case, a continuous and considerable increase in the amount of data in fixed network and mobile communications can be observed in recent years. While the telecommunications network is proving to be relatively robust and flexible overall, there are time and again delays or quality losses in time and region.
In the long term, however, the corona crisis could open up significant opportunities for providers of ICT services, if and when the Digitization boost triggered by Corona will continue to be pursued. The corona crisis has revealed considerable weaknesses, especially in the area of digitization - both in the private and in the public sector. For example, the crisis is ensuring that the supply of rural areas with broadband internet and mobile phone coverage is improved, thus narrowing the digital gap between town and country. Since the outbreak of the corona pandemic, the acceptance of certain business models as well as forms of work and communication, such as home office, video conferencing, online banking, cashless payment, etc. has increased - and all of this to an extent that was previously unimaginable.
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