How will the future post COVID-19 unfold?
Unemployment will dampen the demand for home buying and rentals will be the preferred mode of living.

How will the future post COVID-19 unfold?

Post COVID-19, sanitisation zones would be created as workers enter their factories and industries where they pass through a large covered facility which would be emitting an electronic sanitiser by illumination. Anti-microbial LED lighting is already been introduced. Such emission through lighting could disinfect workplaces and disinfect people entering such disinfected facilities. This could practically be utilised in offices, homes, gyms, malls, retails shops, clinics, hospitals, stations, airports and could well become the new norm in lighting technology.

However, by the time the vaccine is made available to the public at large a new normal would have been created:

  • No need for physical meetings in the same building or complex too when they can be done on video conferencing.
  • No need to attend physical conferences when the same purpose can be achieved through attending webinars.
  • Only staff that requires to be physically present in an office must attend the rest could have the flexibility of working from home with software that could monitor their output.
  • Travel needs would be reduced as video conferencing would take centre stage.
  • A larger workforce can come into the working stream with the acceptance of ‘work-from-home’ concept. Especially women who take a sabbatical to tend to looking after babies after starting their family could come back to working much sooner.
  • Unemployment will dampen the demand for home buying and rentals will be the preferred mode of living.
  • Commercial spaces will become available in the real estate market as more and more firms fail and claim bankruptcy be it in retail or hospitality or travel or malls.
  • Air travellers would seek ‘most hygienic airline’ instead of ‘low cost airline’. Delta Air Lines, for example, is fogging its aircraft with a high-grade EPA-registered disinfectant, while another US-based Airlines is sanitising check-in and gate counters, in-flight entertainment screens, and galley surface areas and service carts. Air fares and restaurant charges would treble if they have to recover the same revenue from fewer customers in keeping with social distancing and other safety norms.
  • The new normal is yet to unfold and it is not for the faint hearted. You have got to decide whether you have the capacity to sustain the deficit or you have the agility to spring back so you may as well shrink for now. In either case, there will be pain and relief is but several months away.

    Also read:
    How to restart the economy during COVID-19 
    Is the government doing enough to handle the crisis?
    Construction and Infrastructure can kickstart the economic engines
    But what about small businesses? 

    About the Author: A chartered account by qualification, Pratap Padode is the founder of ASAPP Info Global Group and his passion for infrastructure over last 20 years is reflected in the innovative thought leadership through 10 specialised journals, conferences and awards organised in the fields of construction, infrastructure and engineering. CONSTRUCTION WORLD was the first journal that he began with over 20 years ago. Further, he is the Founder & Executive Director of FIRST (Foundation of Infrastructure Research Studies Training), which was set up in 2003, that brings out research reports and newsletters on various infrastructure segments. He received the CIDC Vishwakarma Award 2010 for his research in the construction sector. Since early 2014, he has been promoting the cause of smart cities in India and is now Founder & Executive Director of the Smart Cities Council India.

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