How Kyndryl is helping organisations create a seamless hybrid workplace
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How Kyndryl is helping organisations create a seamless hybrid workplace

How Kyndryl is helping organisations create a seamless hybrid workplace

Vickram Nagi, managing director at Kyndryl Middle East, Africa and Turkey shares they use a holistic, measurable, and data-driven approach to help customers simplify workflows

How do you see the technology landscape in the Middle East?
The Middle East’s technology landscape is constantly evolving, and, every day, we see governments and businesses from different industries seizing the power of digital transformation. However, there’s no doubt that the regional technology landscape has amped up over the past two years due to the global pandemic which has forced businesses to expedite their digital transformation process.

The impact of Covid-19 was certainly a wake-up call and a critical turning point to be able to do business differently in order to survive, especially with the sudden shift of the workforce to remote work locations. The need for business continuity and disaster recovery to maintain were some of the key challenges organisations had to face and quickly address.

Today, we know that artificial intelligence (AI) sits at the heart of the economic strategies of the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and many other countries in the region. Its increasing adoption is fundamentally changing how businesses of all sizes operate and perform. We are also seeing companies across industries quickly adopting cloud-based services and expecting to see an increased need for edge computing.

Tell us about your company and the services you offer. What demand do you see for these services in the Middle East region?
Kyndryl, the publicly-traded company listed on the New York Stock Exchange was formed through a separation of IBM’s managed infrastructure services business. We build, manage and modernise the complex, mission-critical information systems of over 4,000 customers in more than 60 countries worldwide, including 75 per cent of the Fortune 100.

There are six key global practices that we focus on – cloud, applications, data and AI, security and resiliency, core enterprise and zCloud, network and edge, and digital workplace. Our advisory and implementation services practice comprised of senior business and technology executives advise customers on digital environments and the adoption and integration of advanced technologies.

In terms of demand, we have been seeing governments in the region embrace and lead in digital transformation to support their national agendas and organisations reinventing their business models and reshaping their digital strategies.

Meanwhile, we have also announced strategic partnerships with vendors and hyperscalers, including AWS, Google, Microsoft, VMWare, Pure Storage, SAP and Nokia, and others. In the Middle East, we have also recently announced a strategic collaboration with G42 Cloud to help to accelerate cloud adoption and business transformation in the region. Additionally, we have doubled down on our commitment to certifications and skills training in our first 100 days while programmes like the Kyndryl University for Microsoft, Google Cloud Academy for Kyndryl and AWS Cloud Center of Excellence ramp up.

With hybrid work models on the surge, how are you helping organisations create a seamless hybrid workplace that enhances productivity?
As consumers, we’re constantly interacting with technology in our homes, vehicles, and public spaces to make our lives easier,  and more productive. Organisations that can provide workers with a similar personalised, seamless user experience that enables them with the information, tools, and access they need to do their jobs without boundaries are and will continue to be the businesses that thrive and grow in the face of change and opportunity. The key to achieving this experience is empowering workers to be far more autonomous.

Delivering an exceptional worker experience goes well beyond the scope of any single device, platform or location. Instead, it’s dependent on the efficiency, connectivity and performance of every element within the workplace ecosystem that touches an end-user—that means every application, server, platform, device, service and even their physical environment.

Digital workplace being one of our six key core practices, we help customers across the world create a seamless hybrid workplace that enhances end-user experiences and productivity. We use a holistic, measurable, and data-driven approach to help customers seamlessly integrate current applications and data, simplify workflows, and improve employee engagement. Our people can help reduce costs through proactive and predictive issue avoidance using automation and self-healing technology. In addition, we can measure and improve the employee experience across each IT touchpoint – including procurement, devices, apps, management, and support – to help co-create an integrated, secure hybrid workplace.

The pandemic has also given rise to cyberattacks. What cybersecurity measures do you suggest to the organisations to prevent or detect attacks?
One of the areas where we are seeing our customers lack in is disaster recovery and business continuity. The pandemic has galvanised businesses into reassessing the provision of disaster recovery/business continuity and, in some cases, actually putting this in place.

Most business continuity plans were not developed with a global pandemic in mind. However, business leaders have realised the level of resilience they need to embed into the core of their organisations. We see a huge opportunity to help customers understand that operational resilience is about all of the different IT swim lanes converging into a holistic solution so that companies can continue functioning in the event of a cyberattack.

A vital part of this is moving away from traditional forms of IT back-up, which are easily taken out by viruses; businesses need to enforce a social distancing contingency for their most critical data and processes, which should be protected in their disaster recovery environment.

The power of disruptive technologies is helping businesses gain a competitive edge. But what are the region-specific challenges you face when implementing new technologies?
Skill shortage is one of the main impediments to achieving digital transformation and realising technology’s full potential. With businesses progressing through phases of digital transformation, talent development must not only be an ongoing commitment for the existing workforce to remain relevant in the marketplace, but skills need to be taught as early as possible in the education cycle. I am happy to see various successful collaborations between learning institutions and technology companies to develop courses jointly, aiming to equip future talent with the most sought-after digital skills.

Another challenge that stands in the way of digital transformation is culture. While choosing the right technology is critical, failure to align a company’s new direction and digital strategy with employee values and behaviours can hinder progress in many areas if not managed properly. On the other hand, a comprehensive and collaborative approach can help instil a culture of innovation.

What are your plans for the year ahead?
We recently completed our first 100 days as an independent company. Given our culture and values, it should come as no surprise that we’re already taking bold steps on our pathway to growth. At Kyndryl, customers are our North Star. That’s why we will continue to be a partner of choice by building the right skills, investing in new capabilities and expanding our partner ecosystem to serve our customers better and help them expedite their transformation journeys.

Read: G42 Cloud and Kyndryl collaborate to accelerate cloud adoption

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