Covid-19 and the New Future of Digital Services.

Covid-19 and the New Future of Digital Services.

In this blog, we explain how Kuva helps professionals meet the challenge of providing services during a pandemic, and how our product fits into the longer-term future of digital service provision.

Service Provision in a Pandemic

The Covid-19 pandemic has transformed the status of remote working in our society. As offices have closed and staff have been confined to their homes, organisations which had never previously considered the possibility of digital service provision were forced to improvise new ways to deliver for their clients. Faced with this immediate pressure, we’ve all had to use whatever solutions were ready at hand, and in most cases this has meant signing up for the videoconferencing platforms offered by software giants such as Microsoft, Google and Zoom.

Aside from their convenience and smooth design, these products have the benefit either of being “free at the point of use”, or being included within an existing software subscription. This might seem like a great deal up front, but as the months have passed, problems have become increasingly evident (see our blog “Why Not Just Use Zoom?” for more details). Regardless of the consequences, no individual or organisation can be blamed for turning to these technologies in a moment of crisis. In the absence of available alternatives, that had no other choice. However, as the Covid crisis matures into a new normal, we need to develop sustainable solutions to meet the demands of our current situation. An emergency response is no basis for the long-term future of digital services.

An emergency response is no basis for the long-term future of digital services.

The Value of Trust

We know that at the heart of any professional service is the relationship of trust between you and your client. As a professional, you don’t just promise to supply them with your expertise, but to do so in a very particular manner. You promise to put their interests first, to be honest and forthright in your judgements, and that whatever passes between you will be bound by strict confidentiality. It is this professional code which allows your clients to invest you with their trust.

When you meet with your clients face-to-face, this bond of trust can be formed directly between one person and another. When your service depends on the use of a digital platform, however, things get a bit more complicated. The proprietors of these tools – Zoom, Microsoft and so on – have effectively made themselves middlemen in your professional relationship. This means that when you use them to deliver your service, your promise to your client is no longer your own – you are depending on the platform to uphold your guarantees. In effect, your word is only as good as the privacy policy of your chosen provider. When was the last time you checked the fine print?

There are middlemen in your professional relationship. When you use them to deliver your service, your promise to your client is no longer your own.

At Kuva, we know you can’t afford to have doubts about the trust your clients invest in you. We’ve built our service to allow you to make your promises in good faith, safe in the knowledge that we value them as much as you do. Our system is engineered to guarantee privacy and security from end to end, whilst the Kuva meeting room is a space especially designed to uphold your professional values. Whatever passes between you and your client is as confidential as if the two of you were speaking in a soundproof office. With peace of mind assured, you are free to focus on providing your client with the best possible service whilst Kuva takes on the burden of ensuring that all of your interactions are fully GDPR compliant.


The Future of Digital Services

We’re currently living under extraordinary circumstances, but we shouldn’t bank on life returning to how it was before the pandemic. For one thing, we know now that any recovery is going to be slow and gradual. It will be a long time – who knows how long? – before we’re able to live and work without having to take measures to limit the spread of Covid-19.

Taking a longer view, it’s also the case that the pandemic has accelerated some social trends which were already in motion. We believe that the shift towards remote working and service delivery is one such trend. Make no mistake – we know first-hand how important face-to-face service provision is to both professionals and clients. Given the choice, service users will almost always prefer an in-person meeting  – it’s simply easier to build trust and familiarity with another person if you’re in the same room, and there are aspects of human interaction which a digital platform will never be able to replicate. This is why we’ve structured our pricing so it is feasible for organisations to deploy
Kuva as part of a blended service offering.

At the same time, there are benefits to remote service delivery which mean that it will remain a vital part of the service repertoire for many organisations in the years ahead. It provides unmatched flexibility for staff, volunteers and clients, allowing them to meet without travelling at a time of their convenience. It makes it easier for organisations to retain their existing volunteer base, particularly under circumstances where older individuals might be unable to return to an office environment.
It provides the possibility for groups of practitioners or organisations to collaboratively distribute work across different regions according to available resources and demand. For example, if one locale has an abundance of people who need support with employment issues, but
a lack of qualified advisors, remote service provision can be used to rapidly address that shortfall.

As remote service delivery becomes part of the status quo, it will become increasingly unacceptable for organisations or individuals to use improvised solutions which respect neither client confidentiality nor professional values. At Kuva, we’re determined to provide a product which supplies a long-term solution to the question of how to deliver high-quality services in the digital age. Get in touch with us today to sign up, or let us know about your experiences of providing professional services in these remarkable times.