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The 4 tech industries least negatively impacted by the coronavirus

By Tim Hinchliffe 15 April, 2020

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While the coronavirus pandemic has brought many aspects of the economy to a standstill,  there are at least four tech industries that haven’t felt the negative effects economically.

Tech industries built on digital platforms and services have been shielded from the economic downturn by the pandemic as they are able to continue operating to meet the demands of their clients while offering flexibility for their employees.

Cyber security, edtech, SaaS, and app development industries have suffered significantly less from the coronavirus economic impact than businesses in more traditional sectors.

Let’s take a look at why these four tech industries are doing so well during COVID-19.

Cyber Security

The demand for Cyber Security has only increased since the outbreak and why shouldn’t it? 

Everybody’s at home, as well as the cyber criminals.

In fact, the FBI has issued several warnings that fraudsters have been taking advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic with increased cyber attacks.

Phishing is a favorite method used by hackers where they try to get you to hand over your password voluntarily.

They do this by pretending to be a representative of a legitimate company and ask you to click on a link to renew your password.

The link, however, goes directly to the hacker, and from there they can access your personal information.

Ransomware and DDoS attacks are also on the rise during COVID-19 and these types of attacks can be devastating for both businesses and private citizens alike.

With the growing threat of cyber attacks against critical infrastructures like hospitals and government agencies, the demand for cyber security experts has never been equaled.

Edtech

As educational systems across the globe were forced to close their school years early, many students have taken to edtech platforms for their remote learning experience.

Millions of students from all over the world were suddenly sent away from the classroom to finish their studies by home schooling.

This influx of students continuing their education at home has led to some rather creative uses of technology to assist them in their coursework.

According to the World Bank, “Large-scale, national efforts to utilize technology in support of remote learning, distance education and online learning during the COVID-19 pandemic are emerging and evolving quickly.”

For example, UK-based edtech company Fire Tech ditched its face-to-face learning camps for the time being to focus only on remote learning.

Because parents always want a good education for their children, they will use only the best tools at their disposal, and right now, those tools are coming from edtech companies.

This is why Lingumi, an edtech startup for pre-school children, was able to raise £4 million in funding at the height of the coronavirus pandemic.

When investors are pouring out millions during economic uncertainty, you know you have a winning industry.

As software is a critical component to edtech, it’s only fitting that Software as a Service (SaaS) is another tech industry not hit particularly hard by the coronavirus fallout.

SaaS

Digital businesses need software to run their platforms. From online shopping to customer service and payments processing, SaaS plays an integral role.

In the wake of global stay-at-home orders, the SaaS industry has been able to adapt quickly because it provides the flexibility to allow its employees to work from home while providing services that allow its clients to operate remotely as well.

Slack is a prime example of a SaaS platform that is perfectly suited to weather the coronavirus because it acts as a virtual office that keeps teams connected and productive while social distancing.

Zoom’s virtual meeting platform is another SaaS tool that’s seen a tremendous spike in usage among businesses for meetings.

The video conferencing app became so popular that its executives were not even aware of the potential privacy problems it posed until it was inundated with a torrent of new users who discovered the vulnerabilities.

Another boom for the SaaS industry under COVD-19 is e-commerce. 

Since people can’t go outside to shop in crowded places in an effort to flatten the curve, online shopping and shipping is seeing a surge during the coronavirus pandemic.

Whether they realize it or not, online shoppers interact with a host of SaaS platforms every time they make a purchase, including the platform they shop from, the payments system they use, and the logistics services required to make sure their goods arrive safely at their door.

However, it’s not all rosy for smaller SaaS businesses and their customers.

Due to mandatory lockdowns, many small businesses have had to close, so they are not earning any income.

Without income, they can’t pay for SaaS services.

But for SaaS companies that have the resources and flexibility to pivot to remote working while still providing high-value services to their clients, business remains steady.

App Development 

App development companies go hand-in-hand with the industries of edtech and SaaS.

Like moving pieces in a well-oiled machine, app development companies build the software that allow the SaaS companies to provide a service to industries like edtech and e-commerce.

App developers continue to play a key role in the understanding of the coronavirus and its spread.

Britain’s “COVID Symptom Tracker” and Johns Hopkins University’s interactive “Coronavirus Resource Center” and “World Map,” app developers are just two examples of how app developers are at the forefront of coronavirus data analytics.

Marc Andreesen once famously quipped, “Software is eating the world” as a response to the widespread digital transformation taking place across industries.

While Andreesen’s words may still ring true, during the coronavirus, software is educating, healing, and feeding the world.

If all companies are software companies, as Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella says, then all companies need app developers to build the software upon which the world runs.

As long as there is a constant demand for software, there will always be a constant flow of innovative companies to provide it.

The companies that make the most headlines are the ones that provide only the most valuable and impactful products and services that keep the economy running.

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