IBM reveals top technology trends for businesses next year

PETALING JAYA: The Covid-19 pandemic has sped up the shift to digitalization among businesses, but industry leaders say this development is a double-edged sword for many organizations.

Hosted by IBM Malaysia Sdn Bhd in collaboration with Star Media Group, the executive roundtable also met representatives from Bank Simpanan Nasional, Gamuda Land and Engineering, and Genting Malaysia.

IBM Malaysia managing director and technology leader Catherine Lian said technology has always been a deflator.

In general, the spending allocated by organizations on digital technology will grow 3.5 times faster than the economy in 2023.

Organizations use technologies to drive automation by embedding intelligence across different processes and task levels, which indirectly reduces inflationary pressures.

“The companies that are successful today are those that adapt to their environment the quickest, learn and then evolve the quickest. And that is 100% based on data interpreting and learning from data.

“Every organization in any industry needs a good data foundation, get access to the right data, from the enterprise into an application and leverage the data to give you valuable insights and make appropriate business decisions,” Lian said.

Organizations are using a new approach called a data fabric to address these challenges. A data fabric is a strategy and architectural approach to simplify data access in an organization.

Cost efficiency, value delivery, and growing financial literacy are some benefits the industry will see in digitization and digitalization of banking, said Lee Li Foon, Bank Simpanan Nasional head of information technology, in a discussion titled Build Businesses of Tomorrow, Winning with Technology- Driven Strategy, recently.

“Digitisation enables data centralization that creates opportunities in optimizing operational efficiencies, cost avoidance and cost reduction while enabling a 24 times seven value and product delivery to customers.”

Lee also highlighted that financial literacy is one of the benefits of digitalization as banking apps help customers with tracking their spending behaviors.

Gamuda Engineering and Gamuda Land executive director, digital and innovation, John Lim said the group is on a continuous journey to use technology for more data-driven operations, from better-targeted offerings to real-time progress tracking and innovative breakthrough solutions such as the Autonomous Tunnel Boring Machine.

“As a regional engineering group, we use technology pervasively on the construction site, from deploying drones for 3D surveying to augmented reality solutions and cloud based collaboration tools.

“We even upskill our engineers to code in python and javascript, a necessity to drive rapid innovations.

“In Gamuda Land, we are taking intentional steps to build systems that will provide a more connected customer experience to find their dream home and also build a long lasting community for our residents through technology,” said Lim

Nevertheless, as Lian pointed out, one of the game-changing trends transforming future businesses is the need for cybersecurity to be embedded and connected in an organization and the continuous education for employees, other than conducting vulnerability assessments in taking on a zero-trust security model, she said.

“In the digital journey, industry regulations serve to strike a balance between governance, innovation, protecting consumers’ interests and providing a platform of ‘finance for all’, hence a bank’s digital journey is an opportunity to use technological innovations guided by those principles in enhancing our customers’ experience and increasing the access and utility of financial capabilities to the underserved or unbanked,” said Lee.

“To keep transforming in the digital journey, we also need to invest in the right talents and sound risk management complying with industry regulations, besides choosing the right technology.

“Collaborations with financial technologies will increase as the banking industry grows its value propositions and customer segments, and working with telecommunication companies to combat fraudulent or scam messages as mobile banking increases will not be discounted,” she said.

IBM is committed to providing a relevant education for students who want to get into the field and gain relevant skills. IBM brought the IBM SkillsBuild program to Malaysia.

IBM SkillsBuild offers free learning, support, and resources to foster Stem and new-collar skills from secondary education to entry-level employment.

In Malaysia, IBM also collaborates with Politeknik Balik Pulau and University Malaysia Terengganu among other educational institutions to empower students with the valuable digital skillset needed to perform in technology industry jobs through IBM Skillsbuild.

Furthermore, according to the Institute for Business Value study which surveyed more than 3,000 CEOs worldwide, sustainability is rising higher on corporate agendas, and CEOs recognize sustainability as a business imperative and growth driver.

At its end, IBM is helping its customers turn sustainability ambition into action through data-driven innovation with industry-leading technology capabilities. IBM acquired Envizi, a leading data and analytics software provider for environmental performance management.

By using Envizi with IBM’s broader AI-powered software, organizations will now be able to automate the feedback generated between their corporate environmental initiatives and the operational endpoints being used in daily business operations – a crucial step in making sustainability efforts more scalable.

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