As the outbreak of the coronavirus began to spread just a few weeks ago, everyone was working to put out fires and find ways to get their businesses operating remotely, while addressing many unique challenges posed by the virus.
Now, as many stay–at–home orders continue to be extended for several more weeks, and we begin to settle into our new normal, businesses across all industries are finding new and innovative ways to help keep their employees safe, track assets and inventory while working remotely, and better serve their customers.
To address a variety of challenges, nearly 200 of our customers have built about 390 applications to assist in their COVID-19 response since March 13th. Based on early insights, we have found that the industries that have the highest number of applications are:
- Energy Providers
- Educational Institutions
Customers have built applications for asset tracking, incident tracking, service requests, order management, monitoring changing policies and procedures, among many others. Here are examples of some of the most common challenges our customers are seeing as they navigate these difficult times:
Quarantine and Test Tracking
As healthcare organizations brace for an influx in confirmed cases, officials have advised many of those looking to get tested for COVID-19 to not go to the hospital. Instead, officials are instructing those who are experiencing symptoms to rather go to a drive-through testing site where you can be tested in your car.
It has become challenging to track the number of temporary testing sites, where they are located, how many testing sites must be built, the hours of operations, how many tests will be distributed, and how they will be staffed.
An initial analysis of COVID-19 related applications has found that healthcare companies have invested in these kinds of applications that can be used to track and manage the status of any testing or quarantine facility.
Request and Intake Management
Stay-at-home orders have forced people to stay inside and only leave to get essential items. However, for many especially those vulnerable populations, it may be even more difficult to have access to the resources they need. Being able to connect people with the resources they need has become critically important as we learn to adjust to this new normal.
Since early March, there have been a number of applications made for taking in requests and then connecting those requests to the right people and resources. These applications are a place for citizens and consumers to make requests, without having to be Quickbase customers, that companies can then easily track. These applications also allow for automated notifications, reminders and updates.
For example, Since the start of the spread of the virus, Orleans Parish Communication District (New Orleans 9-1-1/3-1-1), has seen a massive spike in residents seeking resources as well as the need for tracking cases that required new, digital processes.
The team developed a series of applications including a citizen request form for critical resources and additional reporting applications.
Comprehensive Response Management
Coronavirus has presented a number of unique challenges that business must overcome in order to continue operations, keep employees safe, and continue to serve customers.
For example, an emergency response application that was created to address many of the unique problems that companies are encountering as it relates to COVID-19. This application allows companies to track assets assigned to employees or students during the crisis, as well as communicate with employees, customers or students and parents, as well as emergency response teams.
Based on some early insights, we have seen that many customers are creating these kinds of single applications to manage their end–to–end response to COVID-19.
For example, one manufacturing company has used such an application to track everything from employee cases to compliance with local COVID-19 restrictions across their plants to providing a regular communication hub for employees.
A common challenge we have seen companies try to deal with is how to track their assets while many have been forced to work or attend school remotely.
Being remote is new for many companies and schools. While many have been able to quickly adjust to remote life, this has presented the challenge of how to track all of your assets, like laptops and other necessary equipment, that don’t normally leave your office.
For example, one application was built to manage all IT assets within a company, from the location of the asset as well as its lifecycle, maintenance schedule and the straight-line depreciation of each asset.
Asset management applications are one of the most popular applications we have seen from all types of organizations, whether it be a large telecommunications company tracking their assets while employees work remotely, to educational institutions that need to get laptops and other equipment to students to continue learning.
During business as usual communication with employees, customers or citizens is essential. In the midst of a global pandemic, it is critically important.
It is essential that companies and governments can provide employees, customers and citizens with quick insight into new information and transparency into the constantly changing situation.
Because of this, we have seen that communication focused applications have been popular among our customers. Large cities have built applications to help manage calls to medical hotlines like tracking caller information, concerns from callers, or recommendations about any COVID-19 questions or those calling to report symptoms and seek guidance on how to get tested.
Companies have also used communication-focused applications to communicate with customers and employees as it may relate to store closures, event cancellations, and any other necessary information.