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Cloud helps take companies to new heights

Opinion

LinkedIn's Global Recruiting Trends 2016 report showed that 59 percent of organisations are investing more in their employer brand this year than they did in the previous year. The demand for talent - particularly in "digital arts" like UX and Data Analytics - is increasing.

The most sought-after individuals of the millennial generation are often highly-demanding - looking for flexible work arrangements, tools to enable high levels of collaboration and mobility, and the opportunity to work on fulfilling and exciting assignments.

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File Photo: Bloomberg

From their first interactions, such as the company's digital and social presence to its online application process, millennials will be judging the company's digital maturity. Poor digital touch-points are a sure sign that the business is behind the times or unwilling to evolve - immediately putting off potential talent.

For organisations looking to attract and retain talent in the digital age, migrating to Cloud-based infrastructures may be an advantage. Gaining experience in on-premise and Cloud environment provides a more diverse learning experience for staff and enables the organisation to create a more agile workforce. Furthermore, it allows organisations to leverage the benefits of Cloud for certain areas of the business such as product development where flexibility and speed is key while retaining other elements that are suited to an on-premise environment.

Whether on-premise or in the Cloud, today’s superstars are looking for organisations that espouse the principles of "true digital business" - speed and agility, continual re-invention, and decisive strategies to capture new digital opportunities.

For organisations across Africa, we’ve reached a tipping-point for Cloud migration. Cloud services are highly matured, enterprise connectivity has reached the required quality and price-points, and the concerns about data privacy and sovereignty have been addressed.

Read also: Microsoft scores on cloud

With such advancements, companies can easily shift some activities like database and network administration, server maintenance and desktop support to the Cloud, and create a progressive environment for the prospect talent. A Cloud-based infrastructure will also help organisations’ to create and deploy new digital services that can transform the company and provide talent with compelling assignments.

Even if your organisation has elected to remain with largely on-premise set-ups for the time being, it’s worthwhile considering how you can quickly integrate some of the latest software-as-a-service tools that allow your most talented and creative technical people to explore the limits of their skills.

It’s important to remember that new pure-play digital companies are gearing up to enter new verticals and new geographies, across Africa. In fact, many industry incumbents on our continent have felt the first shock waves.

In order to stay ahead of the technology curve, companies will require high-calibre talent and the tools that empower them to achieve excellence.

Most importantly, employees will expect tangible action. "Digital" in its truest term, should be more than a strategy, vision or a PowerPoint deck. To attain the state of digital empowerment, every organisation should embrace and optimise latest technology and foster innovation.

Cultural shift

A well-considered strategy to Cloud migration is emblematic of this cultural shift. It provides the foundation from which new ideas and approaches can flourish, the environment in which today's hottest talent can stretch their digital wings.

And yet, many local firms remain uncertain about how to proceed on their fledgling Cloud journeys. In reality, designing a migration journey need not be a months-long exercise. It is prudent to look for a partner that can assist with assessments that are short, typically comprising a an-hour executive session, followed by a week of interviews with key stakeholders. From this, a company should be able to map its migration journey across the areas of business processes, customisations, integrations, data conversion, human capital and migration road maps. Importantly, a digital migration strategy should demonstrate a reduction in Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) of hardware and software.

Andre Muzerie

In fact, it’s possible to get a crystal-clear view on how your TCO will be reduced through a comparison of exiting environments versus Cloud-environments, and this is just the baseline financial benefits to Cloud migration. The exponential value is unlocked when one’s new Cloud architectures are used to power business transformation: new revenue streams, new products, enhanced customer experiences and of course, more exciting work opportunities for employees.

As digital transformation gains traction in the coming years, companies should galvanise their efforts to move certain areas of their business to the Cloud, creating an edge for the business while providing an environment that attracts and retains talent.

Andre Muzerie, Oracle Business Practice Head Wipro Africa, Wipro Limited

BUSINESS REPORT

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