POST COVID-19 ERA: THESE SECTORS WILL NEVER REMAIN THE SAME IN NIGERIA.

Prior to 31st December, I had already started reviewing my goals for 2019 and I even went further to set 2020 goals. But who would have believed that 2020 would turn out the way it is? Not your regular year!

Many Nigerians on twitter joked earlier in the year that “Year 2020’s hard drive has a virus; I think we should format it”. It was all a joke, at that moment when Nigeria was yet to record its index case of the Novel Corona Virus (NB: According to NCDC, Nigeria recorded its first case of Corona Virus on February 27th 2020). Today we can’t make such Jokes as we are currently in the battle for survival, not just against the Novel Virus but also against hunger, as the federal government has initiated a total lock down.

Humans are known for their ability to adapt quickly, hence in this article we will examine different sectors that the novel corona virus (Covid- 19) has affected and how the management of such sectors been adapting to it.

Business/ Corporate sector
with the hard knock of Corona virus, different businesses (both government and private owned businesses) has stationed their workers to work from home.

Adaptive Measures:

Companies are quickly setting up tools that will enable their employees to work from home. Tools like Zooms are used by Lagos state government for executive council meeting. Google docs are being used by startups and tech companies in order to facilitate collaboration.

With the lock down currently active, we (humans in general) are trying to make sure that we maintain our normal life styles while fighting the novel Covid- 19.

Long Term Effect

With respect to the above listed measures, Business and Institutional Managers are beginning to experience some Eureka Moments. Some of these includes coming to the realization their businesses might not necessary needs much in – person staffs.

Remote work will become the order of the day; individual will be forced to have an office space at home in order to maintain good work ethic at home.

Founders/ Entrepreneurs will cut office cost, like free launch and renting minimum work space just for the core team or just for crucial meetings that requires employee’s presence.

Businesses/ Government agencies will start investing in infrastructures that will enable them to operate remotely

I am forced to believe that the current lock down has also exposed those who are truly dispensable from their place of work, if you are one of them, you might as well start seeking for an alternative.

Our way of working will never remain the same. The future of works might have drawn closer we ever imagined.

FINANCIAL SERVICES

While Mobile Banking has been experiencing growth in Nigeria and Africa, Brick and Mortar Retail has remained the king of the street. The Emergence of Corona virus has taken a toll on the brick and Mortar banking, forcing the Giant Retail banks to lock down totally.

Adaptive Measures:

Retail Banks are adapting an innovative measure to efficiently maintain operation while staying lean. Major banking transactions are now carried out through mobile banking and the traditional approach of individuals running Kiosk Shop. 

While speaking to Mr. Immaculate who resides and run a mini Banking Service from the cubicles of his kiosk in Jos, he stated that

“not only does he help people with the withdrawal of cash; he also offers services that enables people deposit money into their bank account using quickteller.”

This innovative approach has already replaced the work of major retail bank staffs.

With Point of Sale device in some Shops, and the use of Paga, a fintech payment system in Nigeria, individuals can now pay for  their goods without having to use fiat currency.

Long Term Effect

With the bank operating effectively with less staffs during the lock down, Staff duties will be reviewed and scrapped in the future. Retail Banks will enter into partnership with fintech services like Paga, flutterwave and even money kiosk in order to provide efficient services. There will be a surge in mobile banking.

According to TheReportAfrica, the biggest winner in the financial sector will be the “Money Kiosk”, as individuals will prefer to use a kiosk down their street for the deposit and withdrawal of funds than paying a visit to a retail bank.

EDUCATION SECTOR

This is by far the sector with the worst response in Nigeria. This is because; majority of our High institutions lacks the infrastructure for online learning. Schools like Beni American University , which is the first online learning have started pushing for our academic sector to adapt online medium as a way of reaching its student, unfortunately their effort were met with slow adoption.

ADAPTIVE MEASURE

Most private education centres like Fortswitch Academy, a cisco networking academy has been using “Webex”, for their online teaching, while the theoretical part is being covered extensively, I can’t say the same for the practical part of their training, No thanks to Covid-19.

Parents are using Ulesson, an online mobile app for Primary and Secondary schools students in order to keep their children in check with their academic life.

Long Term Effect

This period of decline in academic activities in Nigerian schools will serve as huge lessons to school management, as they will seek to amend their mistakes by instituting online infrastructures. Lecturers with good IT schools will fare well.  Courses with less practical module will encourage student to adapt online learning.

There you have it. The way and manner through which different sectors in Nigeria do things will forever change. No one could have predicted that a virus will bring about the massive adoption of fintech and the massive use of Money Kiosk in Nigeria. I am sure a junior staff banker who was heading for the lock down was not aware at first that his or her job might be in danger. University management in Nigeria will be shocked that their negligence towards establishing a good online infrastructure for learning will cause a massive delay in the academic calendar while the rest of the world moves ahead of us.

This is a tale of Corona Virus!

A tale of rapid disruption!

Johnpaul Nwobodo

Entrepreneur| I track Startups and Fellow Entrepreneurs like me, I bring them to the Lime Light|

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