Jardine OneSolution Holdings (JOS) is embracing new market opportunities in Singapore following completion of its acquisition by Hong Kong Broadband Network (HKBN) in December.
The US$50 million deal - which also includes JOS subsidiaries, Adura Hong Kong and Adura Cyber Security - is designed to reinforce HKBN's position in the system integration and connectivity markets, while expanding enterprise reach in the process.
“This is the beginning of a new chapter for our company to embrace new opportunities,” said Andrew Tan, managing director of HKBN JOS Singapore. “With significant scale efficiencies and complementary capabilities from the two companies, we can look forward to greater business potential and regional presence.
“Like every year, my key priority in 2020 is to rethink business strategies and steer the business towards a purpose-driven and profitable direction.”
Tan said the provider is also experiencing traction across sectors such as hospitality and retail as businesses seek guidance in staying ahead of the technology curve.
“Another strategic priority is to focus on developing our talents,” added Tan, when speaking to Channel Asia. “I strongly believe in nurturing our employees and grooming them to be the next generation of leaders to succeed in this digital era.”
Drawing on more than 60 years of market experience, backed by over 2000 professionals across Asia, JOS’ core capabilities span cloud, big data and enterprise applications, in addition to enterprise security, mobility and next-generation infrastructure.
According to Tan, 5G, artificial intelligence (AI) and security look most set to impact the local market in 2020, as customers move to embrace emerging technologies. Specific to Singapore and Malaysia, national plans are also in place to progressively roll out commercial 5G services during the next 12 months.
“If this cutting-edge technology can deliver what it promises to do, we can foresee advances in AI and the Internet of Things [IoT],” Tan observed. “With the recent large-scale data breaches, enterprise cyber security is also gaining momentum as companies seek to improve their network and infrastructure visibility and allow faster incident response.”
On top of that, Tan said customers are also pursuing technologies which can "value-add, personalise experiences and improve their lives".
“Technologies like robotic process automation [RPA] allow employees to automate manual repetitive tasks, empowering them to take on tasks that require higher level of cognition,” he added. “As we operate in synchronous time, customers are more adept at self-service models and chatbots which transform customer experience and enhance customer service.”
As customers become increasingly tech-savvy, Tan said most buyers now carry out independent market research before making a purchase decision. But this isn’t restricted to searching for quick solution provisioning and exemplary service delivery, rather exploring a "more seamless customer experience", from the first point of contact to post-purchase.
"At JOS, we aim to exceed customers’ expectations,” Tan explained. “We had a client who was keen to deploy a solution without having a clear end in mind. The client was more concerned about the feasibility of back-end systems and failed to consider what the users from the front-end will face upon project delivery.”
In this case, Tan said JOS “looked beyond” the customer’s problem and went in-depth to help them understand what the business users will face after a full cutover.
“We did not just liaise with the IT director, but also the line of business and users,” he outlined. “To ensure that all the stakeholders were aligned, we made sure that checkpoints were set regularly to validate and review the performance. As we spoke to more parties, we also found out that some issues they had with their solution previously arose because they were not adopting 'best practices'."
Alongside possessing a "proven track record and technical know-hows", Tan said a successful technology provider in Singapore should embrace "customer-centricity and market agility".
“A successful technology provider is one that can fully understand the customer’s business challenges and customise solutions to address their specific pain points,” he advised. “They should strive to deliver clutter-free and intuitive interfaces to their customers that optimise their user experiences, compelling them to continue engaging their services.”
Tan said that in 2020, it is also imperative for a technology provider to be able to deal with uncertainty and ambiguity in response to fluctuating market conditions.
“How can you re-engineer IT processes when your customer’s business requirements change?" Tan asked. “For instance, JOS partakes in an agile project delivery approach from development of proof-of-concept to implementation.
“Moreover, for customers to stay within their IT budgets, a technology provider can be versatile and offer pay-per-use consumption models instead of upfront investments. These flexible payment options are more economical and sustainable to customers in the long run, especially as a company grows and internationalises.”
Specific to technology, JOS partners with vendors such as Microsoft, Dell Technologies, Cisco and Aruba, alongside HP, Lenovo, Oracle and Palo Alto Networks among others. According to Tan, innovative vendors capable of reacting to market change at speed can make a sizeable "turning point" in 2020.
“In the age of the customer, businesses who can see through the lens of their customer and bring more value to them are likely to do well,” he said. “Of course, they need to bear in mind that customer-centricity should be a company-wide culture - employee experience and customer experience are intrinsically linked."
As the business landscape and product innovations continue to evolve, Tan forecasts “greater demand” for an experienced pool of IT experts to provide advisory and implementation services in the city-state.
“To meet increasingly complex IT requirements and gain access to the latest tools, technology providers can leverage each other’s expertise and form strategic partnerships to meet customer needs,” he said. “JOS, being a vendor-agnostic solutions and services provider, we can leverage our robust partner ecosystem and access to leading-edge technology to provide end-to-end solutions, from consultations to deployment and implementation.
“Instead of providing a one-size-fit-all solution, we can gravitate towards integrating specific solutions to attain customers’ business objectives. After all, we are no longer living in the one-vendor one-technology environment.”
From a customer perspective, Tan can also anticipate businesses allocating larger portions of technological investments to emerging technologies such as AI and IoT, as well as ramping up cyber security defences.
“Vendors who provide solution provisioning in these areas can seize the opportunity and grow the pie,” Tan added.