CIO Talk News

#StaySafe #StayHome #StayHopeful #BeTheWinnerInIT

#StaySafe #StayHome and Stay Aware of the impacts of COVID-19 is the need of this hour and everyone is ensuring with a #StayHopeful approach that we will soon come out of this most painful times of our lives, only with our #CollectiveEfforts.

#CollectiveEfforts , the phrase appears to be a known one for us all in the Corporate Sector especially the IT fraternity , as we all have been emphasizing of the strong connect the technology teams have to have with the business teams , with their external and internal customers to ensure improvement of revenues and profits and to sustain and better manage their businesses in  this connected world.  

The success of #CollectiveEfforts in our Corporate Sector is directly proportional to the business results we get and same is going to be the case in these times of COVID-19 when it comes to us as individuals , as family and friends and as relatives and social community as our efforts have to be #CollectiveEfforts. 

This is the time when nature and almighty have made us realize as to what we used to say in our Corporate Life #CollectiveEfforts which has now become the must need in our personal life also and in the days to come this is going to be a single success mantra for us all.

As someone has recently quoted “New Beginnings, New Hope, New Dreams”.

While we at Indian Corporates feel about our People, Process and Technologies, the famous phrase: East or West, We are the Best, The COVID-19 impact on our Corporate Sector has made each of us realize the reality behind.

While each one of us may claim that they have been able to successfully support the businesses with WFH (Work From Home) as they call , we must not forget that times are in when business demands and expectations from IT and the technology teams are going to multifold and you and your IT teams should use this time to learn , unlearn and re-learn the new way of running your IT shows to further ensure success and business user delight.

Before I come to some of my recommendations to the esteemed readers of this article, let me make you feel the reality.

  • COVID-19 impact has made the businesses realize that their business is totally dependent on IT and the technology platform they have provided for. Thus instead of blaming they have to be more responsive and collaborative.
  • While Business Owners and Managers running the businesses used to feel bad if employees requested for WFH for some valid reason , they must understand that post COVID-19 , WFH is going to become the new business norm and thus your technology teams have to be better prepared to facilitate the same be it security aspect or BYOD aspect or access controls or process controls.
  • People who were skeptical and who used to read and attend seminars on Cloud evolution and used to come back with a smiling face that they are better equipped and confident on running their brick and mortar Data Centres owned by them and run by their people , are now clear that Cloud is the new way of working and the need of such crisis times. I have many business friends across the country who still  are facing difficult times to make their IT staff reach their brick and mortar self-owned Data Centres especially in the manufacturing and healthcare sector at the same time many business friends who are on Cloud are feeling safe and happy to run and manage their shows from anywhere , anytime approach.
  • Employees and HR teams who used to ignore and many times skip the IT trainings on IT Infra , Security , Applications and used to put the new / existing employee directly on the screens , ignoring IT Dept advise to make them route through mandatory IT trainings programs . the COVID-19 impact and WFH has made them realize that getting trained and be self-reliant is the new norm which will help them to run their show better.
  • The newage employees and stakeholders might feel happy with the WFH concept but old timers who were mostly dependent on their secretaries and used to feel burdened to carry their work on the Laptops and iPads allotted to them  , have better realized that they need to learn and handle their screens themselves anytime , anywhere to better run their work profiles.

While COVID-19 has brought up many other eye-openers to the Best of the run businesses, we may feel reluctant to be told or to share them, but reality is known to you and us. 

Many sectors especially the Manufacturing, Healthcare and Service sectors have realized that they need to redefine their business strategies to better manage their businesses.

Businesses have even used the opportunities to redefine their logos and go to market strategies and all of us are reading too many whatsapp advises on the subject while we prepare ourselves to go back and handle the post COVID-19 situation at our businesses in the times to come once we overcome the crisis.

“New Beginnings, New Hope, New Dreams”. Every resource is essential.

While many people say this could be an end or a new beginning. I feel that this is the time of reflection and understanding. Time when we should do a deep dive on our past, realize and learn from others and more important learn from our own mistakes. Once done, we should call this as start of a new cycle which shall continue until we keep correcting ourselves.

We must realize the fact that we are connected to each other in our Corporate and Social lives and something that affects one person has an effect on another.

Like the health of a human body is dependent on what we eat and how we stay, we must also find out and ensure the factors which impact the health of our businesses.

The most important factor which impacts and post COVID-19 times is going to more impact the businesses is the maturity of technology enablement of your businesses.

We all know the fact that Organisations have started with varying success rate of their technology enablement and the progress is patchy.

Around 6 / 10 are unable to meet top customer demands wrt :

  • Greater levels of security
  • Faster access to services 24*7*365
  • Faster access to information for timely decision making.

In a recently conducted survey by research scholars in our country , following are suggestive statistics of organization technology enablement. You may keep your hand on your heart and check which color your organization would fall in. Given the fact that pre or post COVID-19 impact , you are the one to whom the organization looks for and make you own the responsibility of taking them to the right most band of dark green to be called as  Digital Leaders , it is important for you to understand and agree to Top initiatives you must undertake to help you ensure yourself on this.

Suggestive List of initiatives IT Leaders must undertake for execution now and post COVID times :

  1. IT teams have to become more responsible and have to move on from just wearing technology hat to wear a hat of business ownership from people , process and technology perspective.

This essentially means you and your IT teams have to be re-trained and KRAs to be redefined to make them more responsible and effective towards their domain as the businesses are going to be more dependent on IT , businesses would require faster responses from you and no excuses and 100% execution of what they expect would be the new mantra for IT fraternity.

This also essentially means you should have a strong CIO / IT Head and a strong IT team which is well connected to the business stakeholders. If unavailable, you must immediately appoint outsourced team or Consulting team to help you do this for your organization. The faster you do better for you and your business.

  1. The entire framework of IT Application hosting right from Server systems to network to bandwidth to Security , BCP (Business Continuity Plans ) , DCP (Disaster recovery Programs) and most important the Access Control policy and BYOD (Bring your Own Device) or ACD (Allot Company Device) policies would need to be revisited to include all the pain areas experienced in these times.
  2. Do it right the first time and Do it fast will be the new norm as businesses would expect your Application Delivery teams to enable the Applications with new / modified business demands and your teams will have to be equipped to do all that very fast.

Imagine a scenario of facilitating your Sales & Distribution teams with new processes to facilitate post COVID-19 impact to help them achieve their business targets or imagine facilitating your business teams on time bound financial closures and statutory compliances and uploads including GST and others.

You and your teams would require a strong hold on your stakeholders, on the technology and on the processes to be able to achieve this.

  1. All of us must keep ourselves ready to have challenges in operating IT expenses as businesses would expect you to deliver most at lesser costs and to help them remain the Best in the industry as compared to their competition.
  1. While you would find yourself over busy and occupied to handle all above and many more to ensure as we call it “Keeping the lights up and running” , don’t forget your businesses would demand you to help them on “Digital Transformation and induction of Newage technologies” as the businesses would require new tech enabled ways of reaching out to the customers.

Thus it is important for you to understand and be ready to plan and induct some of the Best Industry trends when it comes to Digital Transformation and induction of Newage technologies , below is the suggestive list for your onward consumption as each business would have a different priority to executive some of many of these :

  1. Connected Cloud (Public, Private, Hybrid)
  2. Improved and Secure Bandwidth
  3. Improved Chatbots to make you Good to Great
  4. Data to Analytics to Machine Learning to Artificial Intelligence
  5. AR (Augmented Reality) Yes , VR (Virtual reality) Still , Blockchain Yes
  6. Edge to Core and IoT Much More
  7. Consumption based IT Services
  8. More closer connect to CXOs and to the business stake holders.
  9. Best in class Business Apps (On the Web , on iOS , on Android) to compliment your ERP Systems (SAP , Oracle Apps etc)
  10. Improved Digital marketing tools
  11. Improved Business processes
  12. Improved Digital Media technology platform
  13. Improved Bio-Metrics and Digital Surveillance
  14. Improved Social Media initiatives
  15. Strong IT Policies including Digital Ethics and Privacy
  16. Increased emphasis on Speed of execution of anything and everything in IT.

While you may feel some of many of the recommendations in this article are known to you as a standard Best Practice, please understand the difference between theory and practical, strategy and execution.   

Lets take an example of watching a TV show recommending you some Yoga or health tips while you may find watching it interesting the real benefit to you will come only when you practice that Yoga or health tip.  Same is the case with us in technology. You need to understand the importance of timely induction of above suggestions to your business enterprise to help you be more productive and responsive and to ensure a smiling business response to your initiatives.

About the Author :

The author Mr. Vipul Anand is a renowned IT leader having worked for +28 years in the Corporate sector leading the IT setups of some of the reputed brands including Modicorp, Hughes, Honda Siel, Aditya Birla Group, Jindal Steel & Power.

He has undertaken several projects to align IT strategies with the Business objectives to implement technology initiatives in a time bound and cost effective manner, ensuring best utilization of the resources. 

Mr. Vipul is a recognized Star Speaker at various global and domestic technology forums.

As part of his future career aspirations he also runs consulting practice to facilitate organizations on Digital Transformation and help them agree and align IT Strategies. Ensuring a detailed business process study with stake holders, creating an IT Roadmap complemented by the Business Roadmap and helps ensure time bound execution of the roadmap including technology induction and speedy implementation for domestic and global clients.He can be reached at Em :  Whatsapp : 9992555551

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