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The Top Three Digital Steps to Post-Pandemic Growth

2 October 2021

Business leaders in Southeast Asia face three critical choices when using digital technologies to secure future opportunities.

Digital transformation continues to be the number one topic in Southeast Asia, especially as business leaders ramp up digital initiatives to face off disruptions arising from the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to Gartner, worldwide IT spending in 2021 is expected to grow by 4% in 2021, totalling US$3.8 trillion. Meanwhile, IDC's 2020 Digital SMB Pulse Survey confirms that more than 90% of small and medium businesses in Asia Pacific increased their reliance on technologies in the search for increased market share, customer engagement, and higher employee morale - and of course to enable remote working.

However, analysts point out the road to a digital-first strategy to transform processes, business models, and organisational culture brings up critical stumbling blocks. Right at the outset, business leaders face the problem of making the right choices within a bewildering scenario of rapidly evolving technologies, information security concerns, and other shifting economic patterns.

And while setting up remote work, e-payments and teleconferencing are a solid start, there is much more to the business of digital technology than meets the eye - such as correctly understanding and unlocking the best uses from automation, artificial intelligence (AI), the internet of things (IoT), and big data analytics, among others.

On top of that, another leading consulting firm Deloitte highlights in its 2021 Tech Trends report that: “Exploring technology trends individually is no longer enough to stay ahead. Organisations are deploying them in concert to create a foundation for innovation that can propel their business into the future.”

Even more critical, a Boston Consulting Group white paper warns that successful digital transformations are rare but getting that certain factors right can flip the odds of success from 30% to 80%.

Speed to market

Another Boston Consulting Group study of more than 200 companies said that “digital leaders achieved 1.8x higher earnings growth than digital laggards - and more than double the growth in total enterprise value."

No wonder that dependency on technology and digital solutions is growing as businesses compete to increase market share, customer engagement and to stay resilient in these challenging times.

The key message is that whether you run a small or medium business or work in a larger enterprise, you no longer have the luxury of time or resources to explore new technologies - one by one.

To ramp up the speed to market, discerning business leaders are turning to partnerships as a preferred approach. As a one-stop centre for businesses, TM ONE is an ideal partner for the transformation journey through the key digital steps of cloud, cybersecurity and smart services that we provide.

Step One: Cloud computing at the heart of transformation

The first digital key - cloud computing has proved to be the flexible answer to problems of how to enable remote working during pandemic lockdowns. More employees than ever before are using cloud-powered applications such as Google Workspace, iCloud and of course email.

Even before this, on a business level, cloud computing occupied a powerful role in fast tracking the digitalisation of both the private and public sectors. According to IDC, Southeast Asia’s cloud computing market is growing and is expected to be worth USD40.32 billion by 2025. Reflecting this trend, the Singapore sovereign fund recently announced plans to invest USD3.9 billion in building a data centre portfolio to respond to the booming cloud computing demand.

When the pandemic caught much of the world off guard last year, the Malaysian government, for example, was able to quickly scale its digital capabilities via cloud computing and disperse relief funds to vast numbers of businesses in need.

The same holds true for education ministries around the world that had to quickly upscale online learning with limited in-house digital infrastructure. In countries like Mexico, cloud computing mixed with AI was able to monitor hospital waiting rooms at a time when medical resources were overstretched.

Another prime public sector example, the government of Malaysia has said its Cloud First strategy aims to move 80% of public data to private-public cloud systems by the end of next year, as part of a move to improve the efficiency of its services.

Offering cost-effective, easily scalable, high-speed digital infrastructure, TM ONE – the enterprise and public sector business solutions arm of Telekom Malaysia Berhad – is the only Malaysian provider selected to help build this necessary infrastructure in the coming months in a group that includes Amazon, Google and Microsoft.

In addition to government ministries, TM ONE delivers cloud computing services to healthcare organisations and financial institutions, all of which understand the importance of digitalisation to stay competitive, secure and resilient in an age which demands greater agility and resilience.

LEARN MORE: Read TM ONE cloud e-book on how digitalisation will impact the region.

Produced by Going Places & SilverKris for TM ONE

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