Cloud computing has come into its own over the last 18 months: the Covid-19 pandemic has changed the way just about every organisation does business or how people think about entertainment – and cloud has been the enabler.
“Huge portions of everyday life and business were moved into the cloud just about overnight when Covid lockdowns first started,” says Donna Mostert, Huawei brand manager at Mustek.
“By delivering on its promise of ubiquitous computing at scale, the cloud provided vital connectivity for businesses and populations. It ensured that workers could access critical business information, while enabling secure realtime collaboration between co-workers – and, of course, entertainment services for the masses stuck at home.”
It has become apparent that organisations that were already far along on their digital transformation journeys when the pandemic struck have fared better than their counterparts that were still stuck in the old way of doing things. As a result, cloud computing is now entrenched as the enabler for the new way of working.
“We’ve learned that enduring resiliency and agility goes way beyond remote working and collaboration,” Mostert says. “The smartest organisations did not simply seek to get through this period and return to whatever their version of normal was. The changes they have implemented will shape a new future and have ushered in a new age of work/life balance and mobility, and accelerated the promise of digital transformation.”
Any residual fear of cloud computing that organisations may have been harbouring has been well and truly broken down, with companies recognising how this technology has a strategic role to play in shaping the new normal.
Remote working has been shown to be at least as productive as an in-office workforce, while workers now realise they don’t need to be anchored to their desks.
“Today, most organisations have experienced the power of the cloud to make their operations more resilient and more agile. These were good strengths to have before the crisis, they certainly are during it, and they will be even more so once it has passed,” Mostert says.
“While the future remains highly uncertain, by taking the lessons learned from our rapid exposure to the cloud, and by making them a fundamental part our planning we can come out of this stronger than we went in.”
Mustek offers Huawei Cloud services in the South African and African market through its extensive partner channel.
Mostert explains that Huawei Cloud is at least 15% to 25% more cost-effective than competitive solutions; the solution is easy to use; and the Huawei/Mustek partnership means the highest-possible service levels are offered.
“These are the reasons most cited for the rapid uptake in Huawei Cloud,” she says. “It is not surprising to discover that companies that already recognise the price value of the cloud also understand the importance of moving to the cloud provider that offers them the most value for money, the best service and the easiest migration.”
Huawei’s compelling cost-effectiveness is possible because the company is in control of the full lifecycle, from producing chips to manufacturing the hardware, from developing the software to maintaining the infrastructure. Huawei provides the full ecosystem from mobile device to carrier and network, making it a truly end-to-end provider. “A Huawei solution offers the highest performance because, from start to finish, the technology is Huawei,” Mostert points out.
And Huawei has been investing in the South African, even as competitors were slowing their spend through the pandemic and recession. “Throughout the lockdown, Huawei invested wisely and will soon open a second availability zone that will enable customers from South Africa and the African continent to access even more cloud services,” Mostert says.
The partnership with Mustek means that customers can see tangible solutions to real business challenges before they are expected to buy anything. This is a huge value-add, Mostert says. “The team always engages with customers to understand exactly what issues they are trying to solve via the cloud.
“We then embed solutions architects with the customer to assist – with costs covered by Huawei. Once it is clear what needs to be done, Huawei Cloud makes its platform available, again at its own cost, to prove that we can solve the customer’s problem.
“This technical expertise ecosystem and skills sets are in place, with the capability to start problem-solving today. This is a key part of the great Huawei customer experience that we offer.”
Another key benefit of Huawei Cloud is the fact that South African customers can pay for their cloud services in rands by placing orders through Mustek. “This is a great advantage in keeping the cost of services stable – and revenue remains in-country,” Mostert explains.
Partnering with Huawei and Mustek
Huawei is a world leader in the cloud environment, thanks to the organisation’s $2,3-billion R&D budget.
Mustek is a long-time Huawei partner, and distributes a broad range of the Huawei Enterprise products and services.
“A distributor is so much more than a procurement partner of technology hardware,” explains Mostert. “It has expert knowledge of what to bring in country, how much of it and to anticipate issues around supply chain to predict potential stock shortages. And it has the logistics network to move hardware from various global points of origin and get it to the end user customer.”
She adds that Mustek has a significant complement of highly skilled engineers, presales experts and sales executives who are on hand to assist partners with the correct technical know-how to scope and quote on a system, onboard a reseller, provide training and help with configuration. The distributor offers additional value-add in the form of access to events, training and marketing services.
“Indeed, everything a partner requires is made available to help them learn, grow, and promote their business,” says Mostert.
“Since digital transformation is critical for customers, our resellers need to work alongside us to scale the right offering for their needs. We can help to educate both partner and customer, and walk them through the entire process. We take the time to engage, understand their challenges and how we can support them on their cloud journey.”
Huawei also provides training and certifications for customers and partners at its own expense. “This is a massive benefit,” Mostert says. “Although the digital economy is the next big thing, it is imperative to ensure there are enough skills in the market to help grow the economy as whole.
“Mustek, through its training academy Mecer Inter-Ed, delivers this training locally, offering highly-skilled and -certified lecturers, courseware development, the ability to train and the ability to provide a global examination centre.”
Mustek is focused on being South Africa’s ICT supplier of choice. Through the supply of configuration and customisation, tried and tested best industry practices and competitive pricing, Mustek is positioned to service a wide range of technology needs.
For more information about Mustek and its proven track record of solution formulation and superior technical expertise, visit www.mustek.co.za.