Improving customer experience, achieving operational efficiency and market differentiation—the common denominator of these critical business mandates is clear…

Digital transformation, also known as digitalization, is now the buzzword for economies around the world struggling to adapt to the realities of a post-COVID-19 future.

The pandemic has hastened the digitalization push, with enterprises seeking to improve productivity and overcome manpower challenges. A study by GlobalData and Telstra taking insights from business leaders in APAC, Europe and the US, has found that businesses are planning on recalibrating their digital transformation strategy. Some 93% percent of respondents had indicated that they have changed their IT priorities either incrementally, significantly, or dramatically.

This is a trend we are seeing across industries and countries: organizations re-evaluating traditional business processes that are no longer conducive to our new digital reality. Movement control orders mean that these legacy practices have been upended, forcing businesses to adapt to digital ways of conducting business and delivering services.

Digitalization may also play an important part in economic recovery. In Singapore, the government plans to increase its ICT spend by 30% in the 2020 fiscal year, bumping it up to US$2.52 bn as it seeks to fuel the adoption of digital technologies and help businesses recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, the key to success lies not only with deploying digitalization technologies but how companies can fully harness the full potential of digitalization’s most valuable output: DATA.

The effective use of data translates to tangible economic impact for businesses in terms of a bottom line through improving customer experience, achieving operational efficiency and differentiating the company from its competition.

With that mandate in mind, here are ways companies can manage and leverage data for greater business outcome.

  • Leverage the power of data through a singular, holistic platform
    Data is everywhere, and companies’ data sources are growing as they implement modern technologies and applications. In many offices, work has shifted from on-premises to the Cloud as people make the move to remote-working in the wake of the pandemic.

    Navigating this data-enriched state requires a single platform that frees organizations to take action without worrying where their data is and where it comes from. This manifests in fewer, smarter technology investments, less complexity and fewer barriers between data and action.

    A unified platform also helps companies harness information wherever it is, and transmit it to the right teams and systems. This enables real-time insights that can then change into courses of action—helpful for companies seeking to improve operational efficiencies and deliver the best experience for a user or customer. The result is a better business outcome.
  • Choosing prediction and prevention over a cure
    Customers today demand seamless and uninterrupted online experiences. Such circumstances are simply hygiene. Therefore, network downtime and service disruptions have become mishaps that many companies cannot afford.

    Instead of troubleshooting as errors occur, it is far more efficient to predict an upcoming issue ahead of time, so IT managers and/or decision makers can address them before it occurs. A great way to do that is through machine learning. The application of machine learning to historical and real-time data can help predict high-likelihood, potential future events.

    The power of machine learning also enables companies to predict an outage and the way it will impact services before it happens, so customer experience, operations and revenue remain unchanged.
  • Better (extra) safe than sorry
    Every day, cyber threats become more complex and sophisticated—and there is nearly zero tolerance toward data breaches and infringement of data privacy. Companies seeking to maintain operations and trust need to ensure their technology capabilities are resilient against any potential threats.

    For an IT manager, this means having a way to monitor user activity to minimize the risk of insider threats or accidental compromise. That is where threat intelligence comes in—a critical tool to understanding the nature of the broader threat environment and putting those threats into context for the organization.

    One of the best methods to combat these threats is to leverage an analytics-driven security information and event management solution that can combine IT operation data and security intelligence in a way that helps identify the specific vulnerability these companies are trying to exploit in real time.

    With this data, IT security teams can identify known threats better and proactively respond to new threats in real time, hence minimizing potential downtime and threats that may cost the organization.

An absence of data insights means difficulty for organizations to understand what is happening within their business, which services require adaptation for the times, and what go-to-market strategy will drive future success. As we continue to navigate different stages of the COVID-19 situation, we will find the most successful companies are the ones that leverage data to make informed decisions about how and when to progress to their next phase of growth and evolution.