2024: The year of the antifragile organisation in Asia Pacific

Remus Lim

By Remus Lim, Vice President, Asia Pacific and Japan, Cloudera

The global economy has undergone many major upheavals in the form of heightened inflation, increased interest rates and unstable oil prices. As these headwinds make their way to the Asia Pacific (APAC) region, APAC business leaders must focus on resilience and risk management.

If there is anything to be learned from the last few years, it is that companies must be antifragile. As described by author Nassim Nicholas Taleb, “antifragility” is defined as the ability to survive, evolve and flourish in chaotic or uncertain environments. Against this challenging backdrop, we foresee that 2024 will be the year of the antifragile organisation as companies bunker down to ride out another tough year.

Cost savings and operational efficiencies to underpin business in 2024

Despite the anxiety regarding next year’s economic outlook, the digital transformation market is expected to hit US$4,617.78 billion by 2030. These numbers indicate that while businesses will continue to invest in digital transformation, the challenging economic environment will see them likely doubling down on initiatives that streamline costs, improve efficiencies, and maximise the resources they currently have.

However, businesses must look beyond these turbulent economic times to avoid making short-sighted business decisions. Companies must be prudent and thoughtful when charting the future direction of their business. Adopting a long term business strategy requires businesses to devote resources to infrastructure and skills. By preparing its technology, people and processes for the future, an organisation can easily pivot towards innovation, allowing it to be antifragile in good and bad economic times.

Monetising data for antifragility

Most organisations do not need to be told of the importance of data. It has been recognised as a strategic asset and will continue to be digital gold for organisations. However, we foresee more companies will start treating data as a commodity that they can monetise for new revenue streams and to drive innovation beyond just enabling cost savings.

Monetising data should not only be thought of having a direct impact on revenue but also how data can be leveraged to drive critical business decisions and innovation. Doing so requires companies to ensure data integrity, where its data is accurate, complete and consistent. One of the ways to achieve this is by paying attention to data lineage, where companies have a clear idea of where their data originates from, how it has changed and its final destination within its lifecycle.

As more organisations store their data both on-premise and in the cloud, deploying data management platforms with modern architectures can deliver quicker time to insights and provide access to data and analytics across all lines of business. This quick access to insights will allow organisations to become data-driven organisations and make strategic business decisions that are aligned with company objectives.

Operationalizing Artificial Intelligence (AI) to drive business value

AI hogged the headlines in 2023 and will continue to do so in 2024. Generative AI and machine learning (ML) have become accessible to the masses, with many organisations dipping their toes in the water as well to determine the benefits AI/ML can bring to their businesses.

While the operationalising of AI can be used to drive cost savings and operational efficiencies by automating repetitive, mundane and time-consuming tasks, it can also be used to uncover opportunities for innovation and creative approaches to business challenges. AI platforms do not work in isolation – the entire data architecture of the business must be integrated to allow for quick and easy access to available data. AI/ML models are only as good as the data they are fed – this requires consistent security and governance controls throughout the entire organisation.

Companies looking to tap on AI/ML models must ensure that they deploy the right AI/ML strategies and data platforms that include an integrated set of security and governance technologies and can deliver consistent data context across the organisation regardless of where the data is stored. Using such a platform allows organisations to have full visibility and control of its data no matter where it resides. Combined with proper data governance and organisational commitment to data governance initiatives, an organisation can trust its data to deliver reliable insights and to form the foundation for AI deployments.

Organisational resiliency need not come at the cost of innovation or growth

As organisations prepare for the uncertain economic future, they must take care that these measures do not come at the expense of innovation or growth.

Successfully reaping the benefits from AI requires a careful and deliberate AI strategy that is aligned with the company’s business and data strategy. This rush to deploy AI must be aligned with the organisation’s business strategy instead of just jumping on the bandwagon. It is likely that organisations will not see much benefit from haphazardly deploying a single or disparate AI use case.

Enterprises must also commit to building a solid foundation for AI as soon as possible. It is crucial for an organisation to ensure that its technology, people and processes support one another and work in harmony. Doing so allows an organisation to build and train its AI deployments on trusted data, driving innovation and growth even in times of uncertainty.

A resilient organisation resists shocks and stays the same; an antifragile organisation improves, evolves and becomes stronger.


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