The effects of Covid-19 have led to major permanent transformations in how businesses function. As enterprise clients around the world scramble to adopt new technologies in order to protect their workforce and in some cases, change entire business models. Here are four major areas of Enterprise that have changed forever (as well as some of the startups that are set to be the disruptors within each category).
With social distancing mandates and global travel bans, many major technology and business conferences have been put on hold indefinitely. As businesses look to host digital events, one startup stands out as a future market leader. Hopin offers an all-in-one live online events platform designed to connect distributed communities. The company’s platform differs from other video conferencing services in that it’s designed from the ground up to provide support for conferences including the management of stages, networking, breakout sessions, sponsors, tickets and analytics.
In the year after its founding, Hopin has seen nearly 1 million users attending events hosted by more than 16,000 organizations. Hosted events included large-scale tech events, major international conferences and even weddings. The company currently has 50,000 customers on its waist with more than 1,000 organizations joining each day.
Hopin is currently producing events for major organizations, including the United Nations, The Wall Street Journal, NBC Universal Media LLC, Adobe Systems Inc., GitLab Inc. and the Culinary Institute of America.
One of the largest digital transformations in the enterprise has been within sales. For many businesses, sales health is the very lifeblood of the company. Over the last 3 months, there has been an incredible transformation as businesses have essentially clipped the wings of their sales teams and shifted their focus to remote sales management. According to a McKinsey and Company report issued last week, “Almost 90 percent of sales have moved to a videoconferencing(VC)/phone/web sales model, and while some skepticism remains, more than half believe this is equally or more effective than sales models used before COVID-19.”
One major development that is enabling this tremendous change is the growing adoption of “Sales engagement (SE)” platforms. Originally designed to help sales development reps manage and automate multichannel touchpoints, these platforms are the next multi-billion dollar market (according to Topo Research). According to Forrester Research, “The COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating existing investment in the category. Institutional investors poured more than $200 million into SE vendors over the last 18 months.”
One of the most successful sales engagement platforms during the covid 19 epidemic is the San Francisco based startup Groove. Groove provides a transparent, machine-learning, optimized layer between Salesforce and Gmail or Microsoft 365, enabling sales teams to automate and intelligently engage with leads. Current Groove customer highlights include Google, Atlassian, BBVA, Veola Water, and Capital One.
One additional segment standout is Chorus.ai. Billing themselves as a “Conversation Intelligence Platform”, the startup enables sales teams to analyze sales meetings and replicate the performance of top performing reps. Customers like Zoom, Mavenlink, Qualtrics, Adobe, and GitLab ramp new hires to productivity 30-50% faster and see an increase in quota attainment from 20-to-100%.
Services such as Zoom and Slack have played a critical role in maintaining staff communication during the crisis, and with many businesses looking to maintain remote staffing throughout 2020, the trend of online team communication is here to stay. The number of Zoom meetings jumped from a pre-Covid 10 million daily-meeting participants in 2019 to a whopping 300 million in April 2020. There is a huge potential in apps facilitating remote communication, and many competitors such as Facebook (FB) and Microsoft (MSFT) are looking to grow market share within the business communications segment.
As businesses go fully remote, many companies are looking to tap the global online labor market for talent. The key startups that are empowering this trend are Upwork (UPWK) and Fiverr (FVRR). According to Upworks recent 2020 Future Workforce Report, among roughly 500 HR managers, 73% have indicated that due to COVID-19 they will keep on, or intend to, hire freelancers. As time passes, the value of both Upwork and Fiverr will only increase as freelancing becomes the new normal.