Channel Directions: A peek into the future of IT Channel industry, post Covid-19 era


Plato said, “Necessity is the mother of invention.” The IT industry is no less than any other sector, where technological innovations often drive better business outcomes for customers. Like any other industry, the Covid-19 pandemic has drastically impacted the IT sector, which consequently forced the IT to pre-adopt technological innovations.

In a recently organised CRN (A part of the Indian Express Group) ‘Channel Directions 2021’.  A day-long channel conference witnessed several fruitful panel discussions, fireside chats and keynote sessions from the leading IT players to discuss the implications of pandemic on the IT industry. One of such panel discussions was ‘Reimagine Tomorrow – Be Future Ready’, which provided detailed insights about the future of the IT industry and how the IT channel is ready to take on the emerging opportunities and challenges.

The session saw insightful exchange of learnings and use cases by the panelists including Anirudh Shrotriya, Managing Director, Shro Systems; Narasimha Murthy, CEO and Founder, Connectivity IT Solutions; S Karthikeyan, Managing Director, Bloom Electronics and Tushar Parekh, Managing Director, Silicon Netsecure were amongst the panel speakers. N. K. Mehta, MD and CEO, Secure Network Solutions was the moderator of the panel.

After the pandemic, businesses will no longer be able to survive on traditional ‘profit making modules’. They have to focus on finances based on balance sheets and adopt measures which would help them to survive multiple lockdowns. Building strong customer relationships and proximity are the new mantra for businesses.

In his opening remark Anirudh Shrotriya said, “Businesses will only survive with better human relations in a pandemic scenario. Organisations must focus on developing the skills of the team members. Digital fatigue and covid fatigue has emerged as a hard reality and it has to be balanced out. In the near future, AI and ML will lead the mainstream organisations.”

S Karthikeyan highlighted that the shifting to online platforms in industries like BFSI and education have created a huge gap between the organisations and their customers. Hence, it is the duty of the fraternity to to bridge this gap and simplify the communication chain.

Security, transparency and extreme engineering at portfolio level, connectivity solutions and AI platforms to calibrate the services have emerged as the strong value points in the discussion.

On IT security Narasimha Murthy stated that continuously adopting, expanding and renewing the security policies has become the priority of the industry, due to the Work From Home (WFH).

“Data- centre, security and customer experience are leveraging the new behaviours. Changes in supply chain and dynamic customer requirements are moving production closer to the end user. Customers would prefer the OPEX model of business rather than the CAPEX model, which is an opportunity for IT,” added Murthy.

 As a best solution for the cyberattacks, Zero Trust and hybrid cloud technology have appeared to the rescue. Tushar Parekh emphasised that accessing networks with the unsecure locations are an open bait for ransomware attacks.

“Security is the biggest concern for customers during the pandemic. This has led to the preponement of the adoption of technology, at least two years ago. Organisations have also adopted Automation tools like employee monitoring, time sheets, ERP and HRMS solutions that have reduced human efforts,” added Parekh.

The panelists also agreed and reached the conclusion that the dynamic world of IT would no longer function on conventional ways of business. Keeping customers engaged, reassuring them with the same level of support and service is the biggest challenge during the pandemic. Creating a strong internal partnership with team members, quickly adapting to the multiple automation tools and moving towards a sustainable environment, would drive IT in the future.


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