The world is faced with various disruptions and one of them is critical to the businesses and the life of people. It is the technology disruption that presents us with the 5G communication, artificial intelligence (AI), blockchain, 3D printing, virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and Internet of Things (IoT), among others. Then, the world suffers another blow from COVID-19 with unprecedented impact on people, businesses, governments, etc. For businesses, COVID-19 has triggered increased usage of digital technologies and become a challenge for executives who try to lead their organizations through technological transformation. At the same time, COVID-19 presents businesses with opportunities to make some fundamental changes on the operating models that would enable them to thrive in the future. This year, the Corporate Management Excellence award goes to IBM Thailand Company Limited (IBM) for its technological advancement and management that stay ahead of its peers. The award is given to companies operating in Thailand with annual revenue of less than 10 billion baht. IBM is a tech company whose determination is to drive progress and digital transformation in Thailand. The company positions itself as an innovation partner to not only Thai businesses but also the government, academic and developers. For example, IBM assists the national agricultural and population census in technological development and uses AI technology for cancer treatment and sugarcane farming. On a global scale, IBM invests significantly in research and development (R&D) and is a world leader in patents.
IBM’s stewardship is to fully commit to technological development and advancement of the society. Using its cutting-edge digital technologies, the company builds trust, privacy and security into the business relationship. IBM believes that its industry knowledge and experience can provide counsel and insights to help clients solve their problems and discover additional opportunities. The company is well equipped with the people whose expertise can fulfill today’s enterprise demand. IBM continues to lead on a digital journey by utilizing the AI, blockchain and quantum computing to achieve a cognitive enterprise. The company assists its clients to build agile organizations guided by digital data and insights on a cloud environment.
IBM offers a wide range of cognitive solutions on a cloud platform together with an expertise portfolio of blockchain, analytics, security, and IT services management. The company also hosts the world’s most advanced servers and supercomputers. All in all, IBM identifies its specialties in the following areas: cloud, mobile, cognitive, security, research, Watson, analytics, consultation, commerce, experience design, IoT, technology support, industry solutions, systems services, resiliency services, financing, and IT infrastructure.
Innovation and Technological Advancement
IBM makes significant innovation and technological advancement in the following areas.
The company improves on the ease of use, availability and security of its cloud service. It provides the strongest security in the industry incorporatin highest key encryption and management services. Its system offers real-time security checks for a validation purpose corresponding to various industry compliance standards (e.g., PCI, HIPAA and GDPR). The company can deliver both logical security and physical security (e.g., tamper proof protection).
Data and AI
The company’s investment in data and AI makes it the global leader in AI and a leader in the enterprise market. IBM has more than 1,800 AI patents just in the year 2019 and more than 30,000 Watson client engagements across 20 countries.
IBM offers services to 95 percent of the Fortune Global 500 companies with more than 70 billion events per day. Recently, the company introduces Cloud Pak for Security to resolve the connecting and orchestrating disparate security issues.
IBM is the global leader in blockchain solutions for enterprises. In Thailand, for example, IBM’s blockchain solutions are used by Thailand’s Blockchain Community Initiative for letter of guarantee (L/G) processes, by the Bank of Thailand for government bond distributions, by Thai Customs Department for TradeLens, and by Krungsri for contract management.
With its quantum computing roadmap, IBM achieves the highest quantum volume milestone. The company’s Q Network has 115 members (i.e., clients, government, startups, partners, and university) with over 250,000 registered users. Daily routine executions are more than 1 billion hardware circuits. Researchers are able to publish over 250 papers based on the work of IBM quantum and cloud systems.
Marketing Strategy and Business Performance
IBM brings in its technology and industry expertise to support Thailand’s economic recovery. IBM offers the P-TECH and Skills Academy programs to build skills necessary for the nation’s future. With its leadership in AI, cloud, analytics, blockchain and security technology, the company can contribute significantly to driving progress and digital transformation of businesses and government in Thailand.
Examples of IBM’s digital solutions are: the first AI use for cancer treatment at Bumrungrad Hospital, the use of AI to transform sugarcane farming at Mitr Phol, the world’s first enterprise L/G network on blockchain in support of Thailand’s Blockchain Community Initiative, the cognitive security operations center to help PTT Group on cybersecurity in the new normal, Thailand’s first use case of analytics and AI to build personalized shopping experience at The Mall Group, and the use of high performance computing and AI vision to detect tuberculosis in 75 hospitals across Thailand. For business performance, 60 percent of total revenue are recurring and about 70 percent of total revenue are from leading organizations whose operations are less impacted by the COVID-19 and current economic condition. Revenue for the cloud and data platform services are up by 30 percent resulting from the synergy of IBM x Red Hat cloud platform.
Financial Management and Strategy
IBM sets its priorities to help clients on their journey towards cloud and AI. The company focuses on changing its culture, improves its operating model and accelerates its strategic priorities. IBM streamlines its operations into a structure that sales teams would be more flexible and responsive to its clients. The company enhances its virtual selling capabilities, addressing client needs and solutions with real-time data and allowing contactless service delivery. A virtual dynamic delivery model helps reimagine the services delivery, improve access to expertise and enhance business resiliency and security. IBM infuses AI into its workflows to deliver faster and better insights of key business functions. The company advances the use of hybrid cloud, where companies may use multiple clouds in addition to their own on-premise servers, by investing in other cloud-space vendors to grow the ecosystem of companies using its hybrid cloud platform.
Human Resource Management and Talent Development
IBM postulates that AI and other advanced technologies have changed the nature of work. The company revitalizes the skills of its workforce and, in the last five years, percentage of workforce skills of the future increases to 90 percent. For workforce transformation, IBM creates a platform that allows its employees to recognize the skill gap and develops an AI-based personalized learning system to help them acquire those skills. IBM is committed to fostering workforce diversity and inclusion which fuel innovation and drive employee satisfaction. The company is recognized as one of the best places to work for mothers, veterans, and employees with various sexual orientations or gender identities.
IBM introduces the Principles for Trust and Transparency, addressing the purpose of technology. It is to augment human intelligence, not replace it. For example, data and insights that technology produces belong to the creator of that data. And, AI should be open, transparent and explainable. These principles have become the global ethical standard of digital responsibility.
IBM collaborates with the Ministry of Education to launch P-TECH model in Thailand to educate young Thais in the fields of IT, science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). The STEM workforce is currently in shortage. Students participating in this five-year vocational education receive various supports from IBM and its partners (e.g., AIS and MINOR), including the mentorship, worksite visits, paid internships, and job opportunity upon graduation.
During COVID-19, IBM brings together the employees, clients, governments, scientists, developers, partners, academic institutions, and health agencies by supplying the data, knowledge, computing power and insights to solve difficult scientific problems. The company supplies AI resources to aid the scientific investigation of COVID-19 virus genomic materials and creation of drug molecule candidates. IBM provides the cloud and secured IT infrastructure system to support the ThaiFightCOVID19 App by the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society. During work-from-home, IBM also furnishes AI, Cloud and Security tools to support businesses and employees.
Awards and Recognition
IBM receives the Educator Achievement Award in 2017 by Digital Economy Promotion Agency, Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau, Corporate Excellence Awards in 2015 (Innovation Excellence) by Thailand Management Association, and AMCHAM Corporate Social ResponsibilityExcellence (ACE) and Creative Partnership Design from 2015-218.
Other nominated companies set forth their corporate strategies to be a market leader in Thailand, to be a better choice for their products and services, to aim for long-term success and sustainability, and to maintain a leadership position and encourage innovation. For their marketing strategies, one intends to undertake promotional campaigns across the country throughout the year. Others plan to grow by both retaining existing customers and acquiring new ones, utilize a cross-selling strategy for enterprise with them, and use marketing activities to enhance the image of valued products and brand loyalty. For financial management and strategy, these nominated companies adopt a flexible capital structure and strong capitalization strategy, attain a low cost of financing to support business growth, increase sources of revenue, and have sufficient financial resources and working capital to support business operations.
For HRM and talent development, the companies acknowledge the importance of human resources and have HR policy and practices linking to the company’s strategic missions. Specifically, they use KPI for performance evaluation, prepare their personnel (e.g., knowledge and capability) to move an organization forward, educate their staff on changing technology, and support the staff’s career opportunities, among others. For innovation and technological advancement, one nominated company uses digital tools and e-commerce partnership for product distribution. Others strive for innovative business operations from manufacturing to sales and marketing, prepare for agile and adaptive organizational practices using digital transformation, and integrate multiple business operations on technological development. For sustainable development, cares for environment and social responsibility are acknowledged by the nominated companies. They affirm that sustainable growth requires business ethic, good corporate governance, and responsibility to all stakeholders. For example, one