- When it comes to emerging technologies, businesses are increasingly reaching out to partners or IT experts.
- This includes managed service providers (MSPs) for assistance in AI adoption and implementation.
- MSPs like Kyndryl have already helped several organizations in the ASEAN region in their AI and digital transformation journey.
Emerging technologies continue to revolutionize work and businesses. As the world continues is fascinated by the possibilities and capabilities of generative AI, businesses need to also look at other emerging technologies that can be beneficial to them. While there is no denying that AI is a game-changer, it actually only represents a slice of the technology pie that businesses can rely on to boost their efficiency and productivity.
In a conversation with Tech Wire Asia, Andrew Lim, managing director in ASEAN for Kyndryl explained how the managed service provider has been helping businesses in their digital transformation journeys, especially in adopting emerging technologies.
Kyndryl has already helped several organizations in the region in their AI and digital transformation journey. Success stories include Singapore Airlines (SIA). As a strategic IT service partner, Kyndryl’s collaboration with SIA includes the implementation of SIA’s server computing infrastructure based on state-of-the-art technologies. More recently, Kyndryl collaborated with SIA to transform the digital workplace experience for its employees worldwide, to modernize its end-user services and consolidate all back-end infrastructure.
In the financial services sector, the Bank of Ayudhya (Krungsri), Thailand’s leading financial institution, announced a five-year partnership with Kyndryl. Kyndryl will bolster the bank’s ability to adapt to market changes, fortify its legacy systems and enhance its customer-centric digital banking services through the implementation of data analytics, cloud solutions and automation.
Kyndryl also recently commemorated its partnership with the Bank of the Philippine Islands. Kyndryl supported the bank across its data center operations, server and storage management, IT service desk, security management and asset management operations, helping it grow its technical talent to better serve its customers.
We asked Lim where else the smart investor would be looking in 2024.
Apart from AI, what other emerging technologies should businesses look to invest in this year?
The demand for adaptable and scalable services has never been more critical. In the coming year, we anticipate increased investment in emerging technologies like smarter cloud strategies to address rising costs, secure infrastructure, and data governance.
Navigating rising costs with smarter cloud strategies
While the pace of public cloud adoption has slightly slowed, the growth trajectory remains evident, with a focus on implementing generative AI and optimizing workloads for efficiency. According to insights from a recent Ecosystem study commissioned by Kyndryl, 42% of enterprises in ASEAN are actively undergoing technology change management, reflecting a commitment to cloud-native applications and cloud-first strategies.
In ASEAN, Kyndryl works with customers across sectors such as banking, financial services, transport (aviation), healthcare, manufacturing, and food and beverage.
With these sectors set for rapid adoption of distributed cloud, customers are looking to navigate the inherent friction and uncertainty that come with complex distributed cloud deployments, by looking at their transition and journey to cloud holistically – from advising and helping their businesses identify the right workloads to integrating security into their strategy, and co-creating the right cloud solutions to drive digital transformation where and when our customers need them.
Security infrastructure for cyber-resilience
With the rapid innovation and digitalization that have taken place, cybercrime has surged by 82% throughout Southeast Asia, with the region having faced 68 documented attacks out of 86 meticulously monitored global advanced persistent threat (APT) campaigns in just eight months in 2023, according to a report by Cyfirma. These attacks primarily targeted Singapore, followed by Thailand, Vietnam, and Indonesia.
While many organizations have globally pivoted from modernizing already-aging infrastructure and introducing new digital capabilities to enable new ways of working for existential reasons, oftentimes they have skipped security control. This has resulted in a mix of very old and very new, but insecure infrastructure. Businesses will need to assess and deal with the complexity and age of their environment to become more resilient.
Kyndryl is aware of the critical role that data in modern enterprises will play. Therefore, we believe that our contribution towards the region’s cybersecurity plans will center around designing, building, managing, and modernizing the mission-critical technology systems that organizations depend on every day, and ensuring these organizations implement cyber resilience strategies and incident recovery capabilities.
Data governance for AI adoption
Given the critical role that data quality plays in forming generative AI solutions, businesses are increasingly reaching out to partners or IT experts for assistance in AI adoption and implementation.
What would Kyndryl focus on this year in reaching its goals in the region?
2024 is a year of acceleration for us at Kyndryl. We will continue to advance our strategy of three A’s (Advanced Delivery, a customer-centric delivery operating model – Accounts – Alliances) to drive the growth of our business whilst strengthening our alliances and signing hyperscale contracts with local companies that are advancing in their digital transformation.
In the past two years, we have invested in Kyndryl Consult and Kyndryl Bridge and want to continue positioning ourselves even stronger in ASEAN by being the partner of choice to support the IT modernization journey of the most important companies.
We are also very focused on leveraging Kyndryl Bridge, to support companies to have greater visibility and control over their complex IT operations, resulting in better returns on investment and fewer incidents. In ASEAN, the platform has been deployed for most of the managed-service customers to integrate AIOps and automation capabilities to deliver enhanced, uninterrupted resilient services. We are anticipating to have over 1,000 global customers by the end of the fiscal year (March 2024).
Additionally, this year, we will continue to focus on three key things:
- Expand our partner ecosystem to support IT modernization for our customers: Cloud is one area that is growing rapidly across the ASEAN region and partnerships we have formed with players like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft, and Google Cloud will allow us to continue providing enterprise-level services to support mainframe modernization solutions for our customers from the banking, transportation, retail and healthcare industries across the region.
- Build cyber resilience across ASEAN businesses: According to a recent Kyndryl survey, while 88% of respondents said that their organization is well-prepared to recover from these IT disruptions, 92% confirmed experiencing adverse events. Our goal is to empower enterprises to prioritize cybersecurity by freeing up time for comprehensive training programs that address diverse threats such as phishing and social engineering. This involves establishing clear policies, conducting simulated exercises, and fostering a culture of incident reporting without fear of reprisal among teams.
- Build and provide generative AI solutions that help customers better manage their data: As greater volumes of data and analysis require more computing power, our Kyndryl Bridgesolution will enable customers to easily manage their complex technology estates through services such as AIOps and FinOps, and will leverage AI to help customers achieve their business goals in a cost-effective, insightful and security-rich manner.
Lastly, what is your opinion on the AI regulations being discussed, and how much of an impact will it have on businesses as well as other emerging technologies?
We place a strong emphasis on ethical considerations throughout our AI development and deployment. We are committed to ensuring that AI technologies are used responsibly and ethically, in full compliance with relevant regulations.
Our ongoing collaboration with clients, coupled with rigorous monitoring of AI solutions, ensures that they align with ethical standards, addressing the unique needs of businesses in the Philippines and beyond.
We are all observing the increased attention that governments are paying to AI – especially with the boom in Generative AI use. Some countries, such as those represented by the EU, have decided to pursue a legal framework of regulation. Other countries, such as the UK and Japan, have taken a more multilateral approach in developing voluntary codes of conduct with industry – both developers and deployers of AI technologies.
We understand the recent proposal by the government of the Philippines to pursue a more legal framework for ASEAN, in advance of its presidency in 2026 and certainly commend the government for its commitment to think through both the risks and opportunities that AI presents.
We hope that any future regulation includes a robust period of industry consultation, during which time we would welcome sharing more on our decades’ worth of experience and insight; and that any amended ASEAN framework is one that harmonizes well with those of other markets – to help ensure greater efficiencies in operation for industry.