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Digital transformation: These are the key things for regional companies to keep in mind

Digital transformation: These are the key things for regional companies to keep in mind

Digital transformation should always be linked to business metrics, says Anas Jwaied, managing director – Middle East and Africa at Micro Focus

From remote working to dealing with economic challenges, how can companies ensure business continuity in the current crisis?
Any business is run by people, and hence the first adjustment a company has to make to ensure its business continuity is to initiate or expand flexible work arrangements that allow people to work remotely and safely. This will involve technology transformation, new policy establishment and a shift in work culture, with a move towards becoming an ‘inside sales’ organisation rather than a field sales one.

The next is to reshape business strategy and priorities that have a direct impact on investment and budget re-allocation as well as operational cost control. In some cases, there would be need to adapt the products or include new offerings to respond to the compelling needs of the crisis.

Keeping communication with customers, partners and any relevant stakeholders is key for continuity. This will require developing new communication practices that balance caution with a business-as-usual mindset.

While adapting to the new normal, any business continuity plan should also cover the “beyond the crisis” element, put in place a resilience plan and prepare for the recovery.

What are the main challenges – from a technology standpoint – that companies are facing right now?

Most companies were not designed by nature to have all their resources work remotely. This now requires a change in the architecture of applications and infrastructure, such as the need to scale the environment for better performance in response to the higher load and to the changing network conditions (4G and public internet via DSL or other technologies versus the traditional fast ethernet).

Once done, security becomes a real concern. Encryption of the data would also be required, depending on the industry and regulations of the country.

For those embarking on digital transformation journeys, what are the key things to keep in mind?

Digital transformation should always be linked to business metrics and what we want to achieve from it. So it is key to look at factors such as how it will increase customer satisfaction, how it will provide better online services, how it will boost employee productivity, and how it will accelerate and streamline company revenues.

What is your advice to companies who are unable to invest in ramping up their systems due to cash-flow problems?

Our recommendation is to leverage the existing system with minor adaptation and enhancement. For existing Micro Focus customers, their IT management systems can be reused to define additional processes to help them manage the new normal, or to test their business critical applications.

Lastly, how is Micro Focus helping its customers ensure that their businesses run smoothly despite the challenging times?

Within the Micro focus portfolio, we are offering our customers several options including:

· Load testing to help scale applications to be accessed from outside the premises

· Security testing to mitigate the risk of cyber-attacks when exposing the applications to outside the premises

· Back-up to the cloud since no physical presence is on prem to do tape and vault management

· Establish crisis management application to channel and manage all type of requests (not only IT) related to the crisis

· Provide value visibility enterprise-wide on the impact of the crisis on the business, the employees and the facility

· On-premise data sharing in order to channel the data to outside the premises in a controlled and secure way

· Two factor authentication in order to make sure only authorised persons can access your resources

· Access control to make sure the data is exposed to the right stakeholders

· Secure content management

· Collaboration monitoring

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