How cloud applications can assist business resilience and strengthen an organization’s growth

Technology is key when it comes to supporting all aspects of an organization’s development and cloud applications have proven to be essential when it comes to driving the business forward. Cloud applications play an integral role in any business re-evaluating and rebuilding their business models so as to be more resilient in the face of unexpected business disruption.


The paradox of resilience


Enterprise resilience comes in two parts. First, it’s about having the foresight to identify areas of risk and causes of disruption. But it’s also about having the agility to quickly transform operations to adapt to what’s coming down the track. The mantra for any business looking to the future should be - expect the unexpected, respond, and adapt. 


However, the pursuit of resilience is full of challenges, especially today. BSI and the Cranfield School of Management recognise that businesses face a host of different tensions that pull them in different directions. They need to walk a tightrope, balancing the need to protect the business and progress it through innovation. Too much weight on either side and the business is in danger of being blindsided by a challenge it didn’t predict.


The paradox of a resilient organization is that it needs to be both flexible and firm under pressure at all levels including the people and systems that make up the company. To accomplish this, companies need an empowered workforce supported by a flexible and integrated infrastructure that leverages the Cloud, big data, automation, AI, and machine learning.


How the cloud can help businesses 


During difficult situations, the organizations that will thrive and survive will be the ones that devolve responsibility – putting power into the hands of employees, suppliers, and customers. They have to be able to make decisions on the frontlines of disruption but to do this they need tools that will give them the insight and ability to make decisions with confidence. With the right support, every employee becomes an agent of change.


But resilience isn’t merely a buzzword, now, more than ever, it’s important to look at the flexibility and adaptability of every system, process, and team in your ecosystem, from how you engage with customers and employees to how you work with suppliers and manage your finances. Preparing your organization for the unexpected not only mitigates risk, but it also helps you stay ahead of your competition. 


Data is key to every decision, giving frontline teams an overarching view of the health of the organization and unrivalled insight into the changing market context. Digital applications and cloud solutions make this data available and easily accessible so as it can be used to pivot when needed in real-time. From streamlining processes to identifying new opportunities, data can help clarify and direct the company’s decision making at the key moments.


Cloud-based applications like Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Supply Chain Management (SCM), and Human Capital Management (HCM) are of the utmost importance. These systems provide insights and improved control over factors like inventory and value chain management and can detect problems in advance thus allowing for rapid changes and resolutions to avoid any potential issues.


Ngern Tid Lor (NTL), the microfinance leader in Thailand, provides customers with fair and transparent access to financial sources to overcome their financial problems. As a long-term user of the Oracle Financial on-premise solution, NTL made the decision to migrate to Oracle Fusion Cloud ERP. This move offers them an array of improved features with much richer data intelligence all within a single management platform that brings about an overall reduction in cost. 


When supported by the right technology and insight, businesses can do incredible things to boost resilience in the face of disruption.  FedEx Services is a prime example; they were in the process of transitioning their financial infrastructure directly to the cloud, but delivery companies were heavily disrupted at the onset of the pandemic, with supply chains buckling under the weight of unprecedented demand and many vulnerable drivers unable to perform deliveries. So instead of pausing plans and relying on the legacy system, the company accelerated its schedule to gain greater financial visibility into the crisis. Over 30,000 employees now use cloud analytics tools for data-driven decision making and automation, which has proven essential to helping the company navigate the disruption.


Mr. Lars Faeste, head of applications at Oracle Thailand, says:

“The current pandemic won’t be the last disruption businesses must contend with, so it is imperative that they never stop developing their business model so as to prepare for the unexpected.

Investing in technology is one of the best ways for organizations to create a resilient and adaptable foundation. Technology is a great enabler for people, processes, and systems to understand new demands and transform to meet them.”