WFH Winners


This new remote working paradigm is a huge benefit to many of our SaaS companies.

In general, a lot of the old economy companies will face many challenges, the pace of disruption has accelerated greatly. With years of digital transformations occurring in months, even companies who were slow or unwilling to change are suddenly finding themselves being forced to.

I agree.

On other boards, in discussions of the SaaS companies you’ve mentioned, especially Zoom (ZM), I’ve seen lots of comments along the lines that “this is a temporary blip; in a few months when things go back to normal, they’ll lose business, and the price will drop.”

Those commenters are missing the big picture.

First, some people are underestimating how long COVID will affect our health and our behavior.

Laurie Garrett, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, has been warning about major pandemics since her 1994 best seller The Coming Plague.” She expects that COVID will be a major problem for years. Her best case scenario is 36 months before a vaccine is developed and produced and distributed in large enough numbers.

During that time, she thinks that human behavior will change. “They’ll re-evaluate the importance of travel. They’ll reassess their use of mass transit. They’ll revisit the need for face-to-face business meetings.”

Garrett may be pessimistic, but her view has some credence. I see too many people thinking we can return to “normal” with limited or no consequence. That view may change in the near future, especially if a second wave of COVID hits.

For ZM, that means the business they’ve garnered is not just a temporary blip. It may be hard for some to imagine, but I can see new waves of people and groups looking to adopt ZM as COVID continues.

Second, what people considered “normal” was in some ways abnormal. As UMassHoops has noted, Before the crisis I’d fly every week for my job. I’ll never go back to that, human bodies aren’t built for that, it takes a toll. Jetlag, hotel rooms that 15 minutes prior to you had unknown occupants, catching countless flus and colds in airplanes and crowded airports.

Businesses should see that ZM can be more efficient and reduce the costs of business travel. Plus, using it will be better for employee’s health, thus reducing health care costs (or loss of productivity by those who work while sick).

This crisis has forced many changes; companies that plan to go back to the old models when we “return to normal” will struggle or not survive. Companies that adapt through ZM and other SaaS solutions will survive.

I hope the more optimistic projections for COVID recovery for all segments of society prove accurate, but regardless; the SaaS adoptions will remain and grow.

All the best,