Economic activities during the COVID-19 pandemic has led to increased use of data in multiple folds and more businesses are heading in this direction. Many companies have had to abruptly turn to a cloud-based system and have adopted the online world or ‘Digital Life’, establishing the ‘New Norm’ that have resonated across all industries.
To ensure that businesses don’t come to a halt during this crisis, many companies have adopted the Work from Home (WFH) strategy and have opted to mobilize their business in the digital world. Many are wondering, “Does Thailand have the IT infrastructure to support the rapid changes during this crisis?” Mr. Theerapun Charoensak, General Manager of True IDC, the leading service provider of Data Center and cloud, which are critical foundations of a Digital Economy. Mr. Theerapun talked about the rapid changes that have challenged the role of a Data Center and Cloud, which does not only store massive amounts of Data. As such, security and flexibility according to the needs of customers who are ready to adapt at all times.
Mr. Theerapun, how do you think the business world may have been changed entirely by COVID-19?
First of all, under the current circumstances, we have to accept that “COVID-19” was the catalyst of “Digital Transformation” of many countries including Thailand. From dining out, going to the movies, going to concerts, shopping, having large meetings, and going to school. Technology had been under development for many companies. Whether the company is small, medium, or large, it is unavoidable that the world has abruptly turned to the digital world to survive economically.
"For many things that we thought would never do well online have ended up being very effective, which is called ‘Digital Life’, in which everyone can live and do business as usual without having to leave their homes."
COVID-19 can be considered as the catalyst that pushed offline to online activity, and have enabled living the Digital Life perfectly, whether it’s the WFH arrangement, food delivery, online shopping, online courses, telemedicine, as well as online parties.
I believe that from now on, many companies will shatter their old rules and create new ideas to support the Digital Life of users and consumers. New technology trends will boom to meet the need to operate business or maintain livelihood, as well as ensuring that users or consumers receive maximum benefits.
More people are living the ‘Digital Life’ than ever, meaning there is a massive increase in data. What is your view on the importance of data?
As a service provider of Data Center and Cloud, or an entity that provides IT infrastructure, we see it very clearly, especially the increased amount of data at a rapid pace as more and more people life the Digital Life by up to 50%. During this pandemic, the business world has been forced to adapt quickly in response to rapid changes. One way that most companies have opted to adapt is be seeking service providers with expertise to help with managing their businesses and to ensure that their business operations are not interrupted, from data transfer to digital communications. Under abnormal conditions, many businesses place great importance on 3 main issues.
First of all, Data Security. As we are the one who prepares the data infrastructure in the form of a Data Center and Cloud, what we see is that there is more business being done over the internet, which have increased the amount of data. Storing and managing data has consequentially become a more complex issue. Another common problem that comes with more data is more digital criminals who seek to take advantage of important information. Many companies have turned to expert service providers to help with storing and maintaining data securely 24/7.
Secondly, Data Analysis. Data Analytics or Elasticsearch is another for many companies that are developing products and services to meet the needs of more users, and this is an emerging trend.
Lastly, Cost Management. COVID-19 has had many direct effects on businesses. Many companies are seeking alternatives to fixed cost, or pay-per-use, giving companies the flexibility and agility. This means they get to choose what they will pay for and to avoid having to pay unnecessary cost.
How has True IDC’s role changed as a Data Centers and Cloud service provider?
Our role as the Data Centers and Cloud service provider has not changed much. The crisis, however, gave us great insight into the needs of users. We believe that, before we can take care of others, we need to reorganize and take care of our own home first.
We place great importance on preparing a proper IT infrastructure from having a stable network system, international security system, and flexibility even during abnormal situations, as well as the need for expert staff.
“To meet customer needs, most companies are concerned about the cost of Data Center or Cloud services. For instance, how would they know how much data have already been used. Like utilities, this requires metrics. Hence, True IDC also offers to assist with Cost Optimization to reduce unnecessary costs.”
We offer our customers with as much speed as possible with systems and platforms that are secured and flexible, as well as 24-hour assistance to ensure that data transfers and communications are never disrupted.
What is True IDC’s strategy for managing the crisis?
I believe that True IDC is lucky that we are an IT company with many things established including staff who have the expertise and technology, so that when they are forced to adopt the ‘Digital Life’, they wouldn’t have to make so many changes, giving us time to meet the needs of both partners and customers. I believe COVID-19 is a test of our readiness to manage similar circumstances. In my team, we call it the ‘C-O-V-I-D’ plan.
C Stands for Cooperation and Communication. Whether it’s the cooperation or communication of our staff, partners or customers, we can continue our business uninterrupted.
O We would still need to maintain Operations 24/7. We need to maintain service quality regardless of the circumstances. We have plans on how to manage all types of changes.
V Variety of Technologies. How do we ensure that our clients, partners, and staff can make use of a variety of technology that helps to maintain continuity.
True IDC has invested in skills learning for all staff and technology. We’ve developed more flexibility in our Data Center and Cloud system. We’ve employed cloud services to support sanitary mask manufacturers in the CP Group
which were donated to hospitals, and have played a key role in developing VROOM
D Lastly, Decisive. No matter what happens, we can make the decision and take action in a timely manner.
“This situation is another historically important event that allows us to see our strengths more clearly in helping Thailand to recover and to take the next step. There is unity that we should be proud of. True IDC is another jigsaw that is ready to mobilize the Thai economy and society in the Digital Age towards a fully ‘Digital Life’,” Mr. Theerapun said.