Top business and technology trends to drive digital transformation in PH in 2023

Top business and technology trends to drive digital transformation in PH in 2023
Cisco’s Webex Hologram enables a whole new experience in conferencing

AUGMENTED REALITY Cisco’s Webex Hologram enables a whole new experience in conferencing —Contributed photos

If the past few years taught us anything, it is that Filipinos are resilient. Even as the world battled against geopolitical tensions, rising inflation and other macroeconomic trends brought on by the pandemic, many Philippine businesses found a way to stay afloat and even thrive.

This 2023, the business environment will continue to be predictably unpredictable. This will serve as an opportunity for businesses to reassess the course of their business by leveraging the power of technology.

As we begin another year, there are five key business and technology trends of 2023 that businesses in the Philippines will have to embrace.

1. Cybersecurity and IT infrastructure need to transform to keep up with evolving landscape.

In a world where the cloud comes first and where hybrid work is the norm, connections between people, devices and data are constantly growing, with billions of open, shared and accessible touch points multiplying. The network is the nervous system that enables everything to function as a whole. While it has provided endless possibilities; it has also caused some complications. As enterprises and consumers become increasingly dispersed, the desire for anywhere, anytime access to apps requires network transformation to provide constant connectivity and security.

This is especially highlighted in Cisco’s 2022 Hybrid Work Study, as seven out of 10 (73 percent) respondents in the Philippines believe that having connectivity troubles regularly is career-limiting for remote employees, while 27 percent say their company still needs the right networking infrastructure. Businesses will need to update their IT infrastructure with SD-WAN (software-defined wide area network) technologies to securely connect users, devices, internet of things (IoT), systems, apps and data with a centralized management system for security policies. They will need to adopt a platform strategy that emphasizes detection, response and recovery in lieu of stand-alone security strategy.

2. A new era of predictive networks has arrived and it will change how we define business agility.

Competing in today’s digital market means that what can be delivered digitally must be delivered digitally and must be always available. Applications are merely the entrance to a vast digital ecosystem that is changing and rising in scale and complexity. This is becoming more important in the Philippines, where internet users are among the most active mobile internet users in the Asia-Pacific region.

Having full-stack visibility into the various data, system interactions, interdependencies and business metrics that are occurring in real time across the digital interface is essential for delivering a great digital experience. Predictive network engines will be powerful tools for businesses with their ability to extract information from a variety of telemetry sources and test scenarios in various models to forecast user experience problems. By bridging the gap between IT and business teams, predictive networks will enable IT executives to address problems before they arise, and business teams to concentrate on innovation and agility to win customers.

This robot can fetch medicine for physically-challenged patients

“SPOT” This robot can fetch medicine for physically-challenged patients.


3. Physical spaces like offices and health-care facilities will be reimagined for inclusiveness in a hybrid work environment.

According to a recent poll, 98 percent of meetings now include at least one remote participant due to the considerable growth in employees who work from home. However, video capabilities are only present in 6 percent of conference rooms and classrooms worldwide. Every industry and company will be forced to reconsider their workspaces in the coming year because of hybrid work, whether it be an office or a healthcare facility, to promote an inclusive environment for all.

To achieve this, IT, human resources and facilities will work more closely together to drive change. This will involve integrating inclusive features like artificial intelligence (AI)-powered audio intelligence and background noise cancellation, equipping physical spaces with the appropriate video conference devices for a seamless, secure hybrid collaboration and updating employee policies and company guidelines to ensure all employees are long-term fairly compensated regardless of where they are working from.

4. Private 5G, in hand with Wi-Fi 6, will revolutionize new cloud, edge and IoT innovations.

As more businesses in the Philippines and the Asia-Pacific region begin to realize the benefits of digitizing and using future technologies, we foresee a greater adoption of 5G. This is especially as Philippine telco providers could see a revenue boost of as much as $650 million by 2025 from 5G services, according to a study by Cisco.

With three times the bandwidth and five times the speed of Wi-Fi 5, Wi-Fi 6 and 5G together will revolutionize the game and pave the way for greater connectivity in practically every industry. This is particularly important for businesses in industries like manufacturing, which need high bandwidth networks to explore applications like remote monitoring and control, real-time supply chain optimization, 3D printing and more.

The strength of technology lies in its capacity to keep track of and manage many assets. Because of its scalability, the promise of widespread adoption of mobile robots and self-driving cars is now more likely to become a reality. We are likely to see more businesses leverage these technologies once 5G and Wi-Fi 6 compatible devices are more widely used in the market.

5. Purpose will anchor everything that businesses do, with environment, social and governance (ESG) metrics making further headway into boardroom agenda.

This year, we will see purpose become a core focus for businesses. According to a Harvard Business Review research, it benefits businesses, with more than half of purpose-driven organizations experiencing 10 percent business growth compared with 42 percent of nonpurpose-driven enterprises. It is essential to attracting and retaining talent and is ultimately good for people and the world. Measuring the impact of each company’s purpose journey, particularly its social and environmental impact, will increasingly take center stage in corporate decision-making rather than just being a check-the-box activity. As regulations and sustainability goals are established, more public and private firms will collaborate to establish ESG reporting frameworks and disclosure requirements. Harnessing the power of public and private partnerships will be increasingly important, such as Cisco’s Country Digital Acceleration program, which works with governments worldwide, including the Philippines, to accelerate the national digital agenda and create new value for the country.


(The author is managing director at Cisco Philippines.)

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