Parsable Blog

A Reflection on 2020

Lawrence Whittle

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As the holiday season approaches and 2020 comes to an end, it is a time for reflection on what has been a truly memorable year – memorable being an understatement.

While 2020 has been dominated by the pandemic, it has also highlighted many of the unique characteristics of the global industrial world. Last year, 2019, was a notable year for Parsable as we witnessed an increasing acknowledgement around the world that digital connected work provides a framework for significant increases in operational productivity, and also drives new levels of product and service quality, all within an ever-growing need to improve worker safety.

As 2019 ended and February 2020 soon came upon us, early signs of the pandemic were visible. By April, the full impact was clear. As desk-based workers moved to working from home, the world started to realize that frontline workers – the estimated 2.7 billion people, or around 80% of the world’s working population, who do not work at a desk — were the true heroes.

First responders and healthcare workers were finally getting some of the recognition they so deserve. As the pandemic wore on, however, it became undeniable that the people who manufacture what we eat and drink, as well as those who manufacture the products we use to clean our homes, also kept the world running as everything else locked down. Demand spiked for these now essential products, and frontline workers in these essential industries worked harder and longer than ever.

It has been a year to be thankful for the amazing work of these frontline workers. They have become the Swiss Army Knives of the frontlines, often performing many new tasks or having to execute existing tasks at a far greater speed.

Supply chains became very stretched as supply and demand patterns changed. For example, amazing agility was needed as health and beauty companies switched production from shampoo to hand sanitizer. Automotive companies started to manufacture ventilators to help the medical industry. Manufacturers of cleaning supplies and bathroom tissue have been increasing volume at an amazing scale.

Connected Worker™ solutions can ensure new levels of productivity, safety, quality – and now agility – to support these new ways of working. The need to eliminate paper and legacy systems from frontline operations has never been more obvious.

Every day of this tumultuous year I witness the amazing work of the Parsable team who continue to deliver support and services to our global customers, many of which are in these essential industries. We meet with our customers daily on Cisco Webex, Microsoft Teams or Zoom calls to continue to deploy our Connected Worker Platform and ensure frontline workers are safe and productive.

Getting “jobs right, first time, every time” has been Parsable’s mantra for years; 2020 highlighted how important this really is. I am so thankful that, in our own small way, we have helped the industrial world continue to operate during this turbulent year.

There are very few positives about 2020, but it is rewarding that the world now really knows how important frontline workers are, and the need to provide them with modern digital tools is moving from a nice-to-have to a must-have.

For 2021, I am filled with optimism with the impending arrival of vaccines and the emerging new way of working. There is a lot to be thankful for, and I look forward to supporting our customers in even more impactful ways in the new year.