The COVID-19 Pandemic has been the most rapid disruptive ‘event’ in the world. As this blog is being written, we are approaching the most rapid rate of increase of new cases being confirmed and deaths in America’s largest cities.
Virus experts have ‘promised’ us that this Pandemic will eventually be conquered, but at the moment we wait and take precautions.
Several things will have to happen in our favor for us to be able to talk about a “Post Pandemic” time:
· A successful vaccine will need to be produced in quantities that are truly unprecedented — about 7 billion dosage ‘sets’. (We may have evidence of immunity with those folks who have recovered from having the virus — but that data is not clear.)
· Prior to the availability of that successful vaccine, our healthcare “system” will need to have the means to treat infected individuals with improved techniques (e.g., medicines) that will reduce the fatality rate to the range of a typical annual flu — across all ages, even seniors.
· Our national inventory of PPE supplies must be accessible.
· We must continue to have healthcare professionals entering this field of work.
What will be different as we are able to end our ‘Shelter-in-Place’ mass quarantine?
We can not expect that the lifting of the current self-quarantine will be the same across the country. Rather, it will be a combination of state-by-state, and also probably by county too. Just because a particular geographical area has the quarantine ending does not mean that life returns to normal! Travel between areas that are still under quarantine and the adjacent areas that had those restrictions eased must be managed.
Some Projections of the US Employment/Hiring Situation as we Win the Pandemic War
We can not use the recent 2008–2010 financial crisis as a basis for projecting what late 2020 and 2021 will be like. There was one primary cause of that crisis — the collapse of the residential real estate market and supposedly diversified home mortgage investment ‘vehicles’ sold to professional investors.
With the COVID-19 Pandemic the situation is much worse, and every sector of our economy is impacted in dramatic fashion. It is truly unprecedented. The Great Depression of 1929 could have been predicted by reasonably astute economists — but this Pandemic’s predictors did not get the message out there very well. In fact, the shutting down of the White House’s National Security Council’s Infectious Disease Office was a terrible oversight.
Now — some projections post the winning of this War:
· The failure rate of small businesses will be much greater than larger firms — although the Federal Government is trying to help keep these firms alive.
· Any business that relies on person-to-person interchange is likely to see a long-term decline. One example, will be restaurants. Independent restaurants other than chains may see a high failure rate. And, when they try to reorganize, the demand will not be recovering to pre-Pandemic levels. Small neighborhood restaurants may not survive.
· Manufacturing is likely to see an unexpected bump in growth since the mistake of relying on one country, China, for nearly all manufacturing has come home to roost. Of course, we may see manufacturing increases in Mexico and countries like Vietnam and India. If capital is available for increased automation investment, the labor cost disadvantage in the US will be nearly eliminated.
· Healthcare will be a very strong sector for hiring. Many key health care professionals who have and are continuing to fight this war without enough quality equipment may move from direct patient care to other positions.
· Biotech and related AI will be given a boost in growth for the simple reasons — that our society is going to expect that when the next pandemic occurs we will be much better prepared.
· Retail will see an accelerating rate of decline. Online purchasing will have proven its advantages to people who had not relied that much on using it in the past. Thus, retail employment will see an overall decline. Some smart retail entrepreneurs may be able to figure out new niches that appeal to enough buyers to provide a selective opportunity for some retailers — but it will be on a boutique schedule. It will be interesting to see what happens with big stores, like Apple.
· Education is set-up for some major overhauls:
1) Over the past 20 years, colleges and universities have allowed their administration overhead to grow at an alarmingly high rate — the Federal government was underwriting college student loans at much higher rates that in the past.
2) The old teacher/professor instructing multiple 100+ students live in a lecture hall may become obsolete in 2020 and beyond.
3) If the students who have been forced to make good progress during this Pandemic while staying at home rather than attending formal classes, we are likely to see an increasing rate of online education.
4) There needs to be more respect for those students who complete online courses; and at the same time, the other ways for a college student to learn from experiences outside of the classroom need serious research.
The Post Pandemic Impact on AccuChain
There will be an increase in demand for better recruitment software tools since the number of applicants for each job opening will be very high. Our customers will not be able to afford to increase their human HR staff levels, so they will be forced to increase their productivity.
The firms that are likely to be hiring the most employees and will be our best target customers will be in these industries:
· Distribution of staples (e.g., food, etc.)
· Healthcare (all levels)
· Law enforcement (but we have focused on private sector until this epidemic hit)
· Software & AI (more of an occupation across 9 primary industries)
· Finance — although more study here is needed.
Since the AccuChain ‘Recruitment Platform’ must also appeal to job applicants, it is important to emphasize that with the expected change to an ‘over supply’ of talent that there must be a way for “worthy” individuals to stand out from their competitors. AccuChain’s platform provides that vehicle to allow individuals to obtain third party validation of their achievements — with validated resumes.