Business

Here are five key business priorities you should consider.

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PETER Drucker once stated, “The best method to predict the future is to create it.”

What are the top business priorities for CXOs who want to lead their tech-driven companies in 2022 and beyond? These are my top five business priorities.

Boards demand that investments be made.

According to Statista, organizations worldwide will spend $1.78 trillion in the cloud and other “digital transformative” initiatives by 2022.

Is it possible for governments and companies to invest in transformation or “digital similarity,” as Forrester calls it?

It is crucial to shift to the cloud. One or more cloud-centric digital “outsiders” in the private sector are already disrupting almost every industry.

Poster

Grab is now partnering with Singtel, Asia’s largest communications group, to provide banking services in Singapore to corporate and retail customers. You will see more of these unconventional digital partnerships in different sectors.

Cloud is a facilitator and liberator, which will reap big rewards. Gartner describes the cloud as a “force multiplier,” referring to the resilient, scalable technology that provides innovation and a long-term growth foundation.

Organizations increasingly realize that cloud technology frees technical staff from repetitive work and allows them to focus on creating unique, profitable digital products. Cloud is also a facilitator for data-driven business. It brings new AI (artificial intelligence), and machine learning(ML) enabled tools to those who understand the industry and can bring about change.

Expect to hear boards asking executives for more evidence as we move into 2022.

Core competency: ML and AI

ML and AI algorithms are a life raft for enterprises drowning in data. They help them analyze and learn from the data, improve decision-making, and inform various following actions.

Many enterprises are only experimenting with AI/ML, so finding the right skills can be difficult.

Many organizations don’t have teams of data scientists. A better alternative is to create smaller, more focused “MLOps” teams. These teams include data scientists, developers, and other IT operations personnel to deploy, maintain, and improve ML/AI models.

Forrester also predicts that one-fifth of organizations will double down on “AI inside,” which it refers to as AI and ML embedded within their systems and operations.

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Sustainability lens evaluation

Many people are now evaluating companies’ sustainability when purchasing goods and services or when assessing potential employers. Enterprises hold their suppliers and partners accountable for taking various sustainable measures to reduce carbon emissions.

Businesses would have to develop and implement a comprehensive sustainability plan by 2022. This would require more focused leadership in APAC. Forrester reported that 92 percent of Fortune Global 200 companies in North America had appointed sustainability leaders at the VP, director, or other executive level. Only 26 percent have done so in APAC.

Forrester states that sustainability efforts in many APAC companies are driven by investor pressure and compliance and not strategic planning or risk management. This approach will not materially impact climate change nor fool customers or partners who are more environmentally aware.

Enterprises must take “real action” to make changes in their fundamentals.

Career-development, recruiting practices reimagined

The No. 1 priority of every CXO is to continue hiring and retaining skilled workers. Just about every CXO places the number one priority on their list. The Great Resignation, triggered by the pandemic worldwide, suggests that employers will have a lot to do in 2022. Employers need to be proactive in charting a career path and listening to employees’ concerns about work-life balance.

According to the 2021 AI@Work report, Oracle and Workplace Intelligence, many employees feel stuck and have to rethink their futures. According to the report, 83 percent of respondents plan to change their career path in the next year. Eighty-five percent don’t feel satisfied with their employer’s support for their career, while 87 percent believe their employer should listen more to their needs. A further 88 percent said that the pandemic has made it more important to them to have a work-life balance, mental health, and job flexibility.

Companies must consider that employees have different priorities than before the pandemic.

The new “never normal.”

As “never normal” becomes “new normal,” supply chain planners are forced to reevaluate their priorities and how to apply the most recent supply chain management technologies.

In an era where “just in time” inventory was the best practice before the pandemic, “safety stock,” also known as “just in case” inventory management, is now the norm.

Even though supply chain technology can’t predict the impact of market shocks like a pandemic, it could be used to help companies determine the best safety stock.

Companies need to recognize and respond to the shifts in buying behavior and plan for the ripple effects across their data centers and extended supply chains.

These key priorities will help Philippine businesses to increase their economic impact and revive the Asian Age.

Christopher G. Chelliah, senior vice president of customer strategy, business development, and insight at Oracle Corp. Asia Pacific Japan.

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