The Covid-19 pandemic has strongly contributed to accelerating the evolution of the technical infrastructures of companies. A fast-paced digitization process, sometimes at breakneck speed, should not however overshadow two very important aspects which are: stability and agility. As the technological boundaries keep getting pushed back by the cloud, Big Data, Artificial Intelligence and the Blockchain, companies need to be supported efficiently in their transformation making sure their IT system materializes accordingly. Managed Services are gaining much more traction as a means to achieve these objectives of stability and agility. 

The Cloud and Hybrid Models, New Boundaries and Challenges 

Using the Cloud as the core component of the IT system of companies is nothing new and has been the norm for a couple of years now but the Covid-19 has significantly accelerated this trend. The pandemic served as a catalyst in this transition especially when it came to setting up the infrastructure to allow remote working. This transition however was not a smooth ride for the different teams, the IT department and the business overall.  

In a more or less natural way, a hybrid model based on an in-house (on premise) IT system has surfaced to which different Cloud peripherals have been added. In this volatile world, companies need to ensure that their IT operations are future-ready, stable and agility enabled to meet the business challenges they will face in 2021 and beyond. 

IT Architecture at the Heart of Industry and Business Models 

The ongoing process of adapting IT to technological and organizational challenges is pivotal when going digital. This is not just an IT related concern but a concern that needs to be appreciated at all levels of the orgnazation. Industries are changing, new collaboration models are being introduced within and outside the company, the economic situation is volatile with the constant emergence of new technologies: change management is a long-term dynamic. 

How do you keep a company together (its core business, entities and so on…) while gearing up your organization to lead it into the future? How do you make sure you cater to all the specifics of the different businesses while also providing and coordinating that cross-functional common denominator (CRM, logistics, etc.)? These fundamental questions, which place agility at all levels of the business, lie at the heart of the digital transformation strategies. While doing so they also need to drive and secure overall stability and provide maintenance that are just as critical. Agility does not come easy when you are trying to deliver best-in-class service for efficient, secure and reliable IT operations. The challenge is to make both sides of the coin work together, both in the short and long term. 

Managed Services – the linchpin of Digital Transformation of businesses! 

Three essential benefits: security, availability and performance.  

Managed Services, as they are called, are designed to help measure these challenges converting the technical infrastructure into a key success factor. Having a qualified and trusted partner that provides customized offerings, a cost-effective budget with a whole host of managed services help support the entire IT system from the deployment phase to maintenance right through the upgrades. IT teams can then focus on higher value-added tasks!  

They also acutely support the different business needs, help take into account and manage the legal and regulatory changes to come, and help internal teams work towards new strategic missions. 

How to Leverage Managed Services in Times of Crisis 

With the sanitary crisis and all the restrictions that came with it, i.e. not allowed to go to coffee shops, hotels and restaurants, these businesses had to rethink the way they do business. Transforming one’s business into an “all-digital” model is not an easy thing to do. With the sales channel changing, it necessarily has an impact on the logistics and the relationship with customers. Internal tools like payroll management need to adapt to the remote working landscape. Managed Services help these customers focus on their core business while the different IT teams are tasked with overhauling, maintaining the IT system delivering an agility-enabled transformation project.  

Another sector that has been greatly impacted by the Covid-19 crisis is the aeronautics industry. The core business of one of our customers was purely and simply interrupted for several months. While the company was rethinking its business strategy developing new revenue streams (in logistics and the transportation of masks and essential materials, for example), it had to ensure the sustainability of its IT system to stay in the game. Managed Services helped this customer be agility-ready and adapt his value proposition accordingly while benefitting from high-performance continuity of service that factor in the rapid internal changes. 

Managed services bring tangible and efficient support to the transformation of an IT system. The maintenance of hybrid infrastructures and business applications should not hinder the ongoing evolution of the IT system…Wouldn’t it be the right time to accelerate digital transformation in complete confidence, with a cost-effective budget, and leverage the best applications and technical solutions on the market? 

Article initially published in Finyear.com.

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As Customer Care Director Western Europe, Christophe LINSOLAS ensures the follow-up of PRODWARE customers on the operational aspects and maintenance in operational condition. He supports and ensures the coordination of the transformation projects of PRODWARE customers such as the modernization of their applications and business processes, the migration of their IS and their transition to the CLOUD, the optimization of the customer support organization and its continuous improvement. Christophe has more than 20 years of experience in the IS world in operational positions: ERP project director, Production Manager at BULL and ATOS or management positions within large ESN: Dynamics AX R&D Director at GFI, Dynamics AX Practice Manager at DXC.

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