Philippine Retailing Magazine Q4 2020 (Digital Edition Only) - Page 19


Strengthening Alliance in the face of Adversity

No business or company is spared from the challenges brought by Covid-19 . Even businesses that are digital in their core were caught by surprise with the rapid sweep of the Covid-19 in the country and the eventual quarantine imposed last March to curb the spread of the virus .
But this does not mean that businesses will succumb to this new environment . Instead , this was an opportunity to improve and think of new ways to serve clients , as in the case of Alliance Software Inc . Established in the Capital of Cebu on the year 2000 , it soon expanded its office in Manila two years after , to cater to Luzon requirements . Then even extended reach to Tokyo , Japan in 2006 .
The global IT services and solutions company , which since grew to become one of the Philippines largest and most respected independent software development outsourcing company offers services such as Application Development Outsourcing and Maintenance , Quality Assurance and Testing Services , UX design , System and Application Documentation and Vulnerability Assessment Services , among others .
In our interview with Alliance Software Inc ., President Mr . Robert Cheng , he shared how the company started and how it is coping in the face their biggest challenge so far .
What is the biggest challenge for the company in the last two decades ? How are you able to overcome this ?
Covid-19 is by far the biggest challenge Alliance has faced in the last two decades . It came as a surprise where there are no precedent nor playbook for this kind of scenario . The pandemic and the resulting lockdowns severely affected both our internal operations and our client base .
But in the face of this challenge , our organization has also identified the following opportunities as we embrace the new reality : we must utilize technology as a driver and identify or create the new market trends .
What we did through technology is we expanded our presence online and to continue our operations , we provided work from home and flexible arrangement to our employees , as well as optimized our accounting process to encourage online channels . We also incorporated more automation in our processes .
During this time , we also found that data-driven decision making is essential . We focused on cloud computing and productivity using real-time info .
This Covid-19 challenge was also an opportunity for reimagination and transformation . The pandemic forced every one of us to recalibrate our offering by focusing on business sustainability & operational optimization by focusing on online commerce , cloud native enterprise resource planning and mobile workforce productivity .
How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected your business ? Are there innovations or new products resulting from this pandemic that you started offering to your clients ?
Like everyone else , Alliance is not spared in terms of being negatively impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic . We experienced challenges , both on the revenue and operations levels .
On a positive note , we are happy that our team members showed a lot of resiliency and cooperation to cope with these changes . We are able to immediately adopt an effective remote work arrangement , allowing us to provide non-stop IT services and support to all of our clients .
We have also come up with new solutions that will help our clients cope with the new economic environment . These include : Alliance E-Commerce which powers online stores with an all-in-one cloud solution that is easy to deploy , provides enhanced security , and is packed with features to accelerate sales and integrate seamlessly with popular and market leading retail solutions . Aside from this , we were also able to launch other new solutions like Alliance Checkpoint , Alliance Mobile JO , Alliance Expense Trail and the Alliance Safety Healthy Checklist , which are all part of Alliance edge workplace productivity solutions .
In relation to this pandemic and changes it brought , what are the transformations you would advise retailers to adapt ?
At the forefront is the need for all retailers to ensure the safety and efficiency of their employees in this new normal environment .
Secondly , the new normal has shown how adopting new digital solutions can help push all retailers ’ business in the long run . New digital solutions are designed to empower SMEs with features made to enhance their business operations . More importantly , these new digital solutions are cloud based and normally on a Software as a Service ( SaaS ) model thereby prioritizing easy access and affordability .
What value do you see by being a PRA member ?
PRA provides updates in the retail industry which helps our company see the direction on services and solutions for the retail industry .
Likewise , the local and international network of PRA gives us an opportunity to meet the key players in the retail industry – retailers , wholesalers , distributors , suppliers , manufacturers and with other large influential business organizations .
Robert Cheng
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