In an interaction with CIO AXIS, Ashok Verma, Head – Information Technology, TBEA Energy (India) Private Limited, discusses digital transformation in the backdrop of the challenges brought about by Covid-19 and shares technologies and trends his organization to focus on in 2021.
What are your proposals to accelerate the digital transformation of companies and return to a new post-pandemic normal?
While many aspects of life remain on hold, many organizations are charging full steam ahead on digital transformation efforts – even giving some pieces a speed boost.
Culture change is the hardest part of digital transformation. There will be large portions of the workforce that will not return to a traditional office and traditional office hours post-pandemic. COVID-19 has been the largest experiment of testing the need for a flexible, remote-ready workforce. Post-crisis, many workers will continue to embrace remote work, rather than long commutes.
Organizations will look at increasing security-related projects as data will no longer be confined to corporate offices.
This may include improving VPN capability and speed, ensuring data is encrypted in-flight and at-rest, and that systems accessing the environments are also encrypted. Traditional network monitoring will evolve into more endpoint monitoring, regardless of device or location, to ensure protection and have better control over off-premise devices that access corporate environments. COVID-19 will end up being the greatest accelerator of digital transformation projects.
Working remotely will be extremely popular for the foreseeable future. Employers need to understand that productivity can be maintained outside of a physical office too. As cash flow would inevitably become a difficult situation for everyone, and supporting our vendors was very important to all. Companies need to automate its AP process, so they should able to continue to receive, approve, and pay invoices within payment terms to continue the operations. Training and development plans also need to digitize for continuous advancements of work forces. Well beyond the pandemic, many businesses will focus digital transformation efforts on the people, processes, and technology that make them more resilient and adaptable to future changes.
Can you please share some of the unique lessons learned from Covid-19?
The pandemic has made me think more about the importance of trying to use data to whatever extent possible in pursuing objective truth. The only way we can overcome novel problems like COVID-19 is to constantly enhance our knowledge and understanding—and then apply that knowledge to improve the way we think about and deliver care.
Given all of the information, and even misinformation, out there, it’s especially important now to separate signal from noise. In turn, the opportunities that having all of this information creates for data and technology to provide meaningful and large-scale impact are immense.
The most unique lesson learned from COVID-19 that core manufacturing companies also can operate their maximum functions from remote locations accepts core manufacturing like IT, Finance & accounts, Administration & design etc.
What technologies and trends will your organization be focusing in ?
1. Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning.
2. The Internet of Things (IoT).
3. Wearables and augmented humans.
4. Big Data and augmented analytics.
Given the not-good-performance of the economy, when will the overall market be in upward trend?
Yes it’s true that overall market is in upward trend while majority of manufacturing companies’ performance is not good. Manufacturing sector has been affected a lot due to lockdown during COVID -19 pandemic. Market is in upwards direction due to lot of start-ups playing critical role in the crisis and huge foreign FDI investment due to better management of COVID-19.