We talked to Sofoklis Georgiades, COO, Director & Co-Founder of R Digital about the responses that R Digital made to the Covid 19 pandemic and this is what he said about it.
First of all, how are you doing in these COVID-19 times?
Sofoklis Georgiades: Thankfully, all the members of our team are great and, most importantly, healthy – both physically and mentally! It is a fact that the last year has been a tricky one for everyone and it will be remembered as a challenging year forcing most of us to adapt to new realities. What makes us optimistic though is seeing that people are capable not only to adapt but to shape the future.
At this point, I’d like to express our sincere gratitude for having us on startup.info – it’s essential for people to express their points of view and exchange ideas within the frame of a global innovation ecosystem.
How did the coronavirus pandemic affect your business?
Sofoklis Georgiades: R Digital, a Web Development & Digital Marketing Agency, is positioned in a growing and developing market with multiple opportunities. As you can imagine, the coronavirus pandemic affected our business in a positive way.
Digitalization is undeniably a part of our lives. Relations, Developments, Changes, Purchases, Experiences, Evolvements, Transactions, Advances R Digital. And, of course, when it comes to businesses, nowadays it’s essential to be able to serve their clientele online and offer seamless digital experiences through all the steps of the customer journey – from pre-sales to after-sales.
Since pandemic’s day one, businesses have become more reliant on their digital strategy, than ever. In fact, in many cases, it has been the deciding factor in whether they would make it through tough times coming ahead, or not. And that’s when R Digital comes in.
Did R Digital take any measures? Also, how does it innovate?
Sofoklis Georgiades: Following the World Health Organization and local authorities’ policies, we have implemented the Work From Home Policy, applicable to all employees of our company. By our employees’ safety being a top priority, our Top Management continually reviews the situation and monitors all global safety regulations, progress & information on the matter.
Thankfully, from the very beginning of our company’s operation, we have established a sophisticated and robust infrastructure, with various cloud applications firmly in place which allow us to continue business operations efficiently and seamlessly.
What are the lessons learned?
Sofoklis Georgiades: Serious business owners know that ups and downs are part of the game. Market conditions can change over the night and external factors can affect demand. Also, they know they should be prepared for such inevitable downturns and have a contingency plan in place.
Whether or not these predictions come to fruition, they shouldn’t take a chance. It’s better to be prepared for a possible recession rather than become another casualty. When they do, they’ll not only survive the next financial or social crisis but also thrive and grow.
What’s your advice with regards to the operating models of future startups?
Sofoklis Georgiades: My advice for future startups is to establish an operating model that ensures agility, resilience, and growth. To shift from top-down decision-making by empowering teams of professionals who are guided by purpose & vision, are data-driven & technology-oriented, and, most importantly, are able to adapt in sudden market changes and new demands.
Lastly, choose the software and hardware considering all of their operations driven by a plug & play approach, and enabled by the cloud for faster speed to market.
Do you believe there are still opportunities at this stage for businesses to take advantage of? Also, what are your predictions for the future?
Sofoklis Georgiades: Of course! Businesses and their marketing teams should take advantage of the momentum to promote impactful campaigns in a smart way. Also, focus on the mediums that will bring back immediate sales and result in a short-term positive Return on Investment.
My predictions for the future are the following:
- The rapid acceleration of e-commerce
- Boost of digital transactions and contactless payments
- Whole new store pickup approach – Retailers could even move to a drive-thru model to better facilitate in-store collection
- Big gets bigger, i.e.. Amazon and Alibaba
- Businesses of any size, with the right strategy in place, get bigger faster than ever
Your final thoughts?
Sofoklis Georgiades: As demonstrated now and in the past, not all businesses are impacted in the same way by the same recession.
Digitalization helps businesses survive, grow, thrive. Our lives are – or have already been – digitalized. It’s been observed that digitalization is changing business models, the rules of how businesses and whole industries operate, and the market’s shifts to new demands.
All you have to do is Improvise. Adapt. Evolve.
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