Intelligent CIO Middle East Issue 34 - Page 47

////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// FEATURE: ANALYTICS The lifeblood of Digital Transformation Andy Froemmel, Head of Cloud, Middle East North, SAP, says data has transformed from being the ‘new oil’ to the ‘lifeblood’ of Digital Transformation the region’s cloud-based analytics growth by recently going live on public cloud data centres in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Every industry vertical can benefit from data analytics, which can measure everything from geo-location tracking for smart parking, malls and stadiums, to social media sentiment and barrels of oil being pumped or retail items shipped. But it also puts a responsibility on to the shoulders of every company to manage data carefully and comply with regulations like GDPR. One of the biggest opportunities is to train the workforce in digital skills. While not every employee needs to be a data scientist, employer demand for analytics skills has been growing by double and triple-digits over the past few years (88% in the UAE and 455% in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia), according to the recent SAP and Oxford Economics survey Workforce 2020. Supporting digital skills growth, SAP recently became a partner for the One Million Arab Coders Initiative, and our Refugee Code Week initiative trained more than 16,000 youth in coding skills in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. n In the Middle East, we are seeing strong analytics success in mega-events, such as with Expo 2020 Dubai transforming experiences for a projected 25 million visitors; banking and finance with the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority enhancing its budgeting; sport with sailing analytics during the Oman Extreme Sailing Series; and healthcare with Saudi Arabia’s Emdadat fostering a digital procurement marketplace for medical providers and suppliers. Retail holds strong potential, with SAP Hybris Labs prototyping using analytics, Artificial Intelligence, and augmented and virtual reality to personalise shopping experiences. Particularly an end-to-end data and analytics platform becomes key for retailers to provide a seamless ‘digital-to-shop floor’ experience and for the consumer to remain in control of his or her data. Middle East organisations are rapidly adopting analytics solutions running on our SAP HANA in-memory platform, SAP S/4HANA real-time business suite, and SAP Leonardo digital innovation system. Organisations can see the biggest benefit from integrating analytics with Blockchain, IoT, and AI and Machine Learning. DATA ANALYTICS IS RAPIDLY MOVING PAST BEING ‘THE NEW OIL’ TO BECOMING THE LIFEBLOOD OF EVERY ORGANISATION’S DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION INTELLIGENTCIO 47