Three Tips for CIOs During COVID-19

As the president extends national social distancing recommendations to April 30, and states consider extending their stay-at-home orders, it’s become increasingly clear that the COVID-19 pandemic will last for a while. Since nearly 75% of Americans will soon be stuck at home most of the time, you’ve probably already planned or executed your Work From Home (WFH) strategy. 

So, what’s next on the list of to-dos for CIOs during the coronavirus outbreak? 

Your immediate next step should be to make sure you’re following best practices for COVID-19 preparedness and resiliency. Get the guide to COVID-19 here. 

After that, you’ll want to focus on these 3 tips that you can implement over the coming weeks and months. 

The #1 CIO Priority During COVID-19

Now, instead of securing and optimizing your business networks and systems, you spend your days trying to make sure that staff at all levels can conduct “business as usual” to the greatest extent possible. 

By this point, you’ve probably authorized the purchase of hundreds of headsets and webcams to make meetings seamless… but that VPN? There’s not much you can do to make that seamless. It was never meant to handle this load, and it’s straining under the pressure of so many remote connections at once. 

Therefore, your #1 priority right now is to improve your enterprise tech setup as soon as possible, so your company runs faster and more productively, from anywhere and at any time. 

Here are 3 tips to help you achieve that priority goal. 

Drill-Down to Strategy

In addition to a slow in the economy and a slow in business volume, your office is facing VPN slowdowns and the slowdown of WFH employees who are also responsible for homeschooling their children and caring for ill family members. Put simply, everything is slow right now – but there’s promise that, as soon as the social distancing orders relax, business could speed up to a hectic pace nearly instantly

That means right now is a great time to focus on your strategy

Take some time to carefully assess what is and isn’t working for your enterprise during the sudden IT load generated by the pandemic. Surely, there are problems and issues your team needs to fix ASAP, but there are also less pressing issues, such as surprising bottlenecks, limited access to data, and mild tech irritants that put strain on your IT team or other departments. 

While you have a moment, make a quick note of the issues you’re seeing or experiencing. Then, once you have a few items on your list, schedule a chat with your Oracle partner to discuss potential solutions moving forward. You may be surprised at how quickly, easily, and affordably you can solve many of the problems you’re now recognizing. 

Get Agile with Cloud Apps 

With something as disruptive and fast-moving as a global pandemic, it’s clear that enterprise leaders require comprehensive real-time insight into operations, supply chain, and financials. For years, the business world has applauded agile companies as ones that can quickly respond to unexpected developments – and COVID-19 is proving to be the stress-test of effective agility. 

Whether your supplies come from China, Germany, or Bermuda, your current supply chain has been impacted. Using accurate data that captures the true extent of that disruption, in real time, agile enterprises can run updated forecasts and update delivery timelines. Without that critical, real-time, connected insight into the moment-by-moment state of your enterprise, those up-to-date forecasts will be out of your reach. 

That’s where cloud apps come in. 

With Oracle SCM Cloud and Oracle ERP Cloud, authorized personnel in your enterprise can securely and quickly tap into true, real-time data at any time, even while they’re working from home. That way they can keep as close a watch on the business as they can on the constantly unfolding news and markets situation – and make appropriate, timely, well-informed strategic decisions accordingly. 

Hand off the Heavy Workload to Emergency MSP Services

Unlike natural disasters or cyberattacks, the ongoing disruption from a pandemic can last months

Worse, according to the pandemic planning experts at Gartner, the resulting fallout can be devastating to your operations. Gartner suggests that CIOs should prepare themselves for the potential of more than 40% staff absenteeism, due to illness and the demands of childcare as well as caring for ill family members. 

With potentially every employee working remotely during COVID-19, it’s more important than ever to ensure that your networks and systems maintain peak operations at all times

Will you be able to do that if you experience high levels of absenteeism? 

To help cover the workload and maintain seamless WFH operations, with appropriate disaster recovery systems, you may want to consider working with an emergency Managed Services Provider (MSP). If your company runs Oracle solutions and is on or interested in moving to the cloud, you’ll want to work with an MSP that has proven expertise in supporting your Oracle systems, as well as a range of cloud services and platforms, including Azure, Google, and AWS. 

An MSP can help you handle after-hours support, updates, and patching; comprehensive monitoring and threat management; and optimization of your systems and networks as your workloads increase and your IT staff potentially reduces. Plus, when you work with the right MSP, they can step in to help when you need them, so you know you can always count on expert assistance

Start Planning Your Next Steps with the Experts at Centroid

For more than 20 years, the experts at Centroid have helped enterprise CIOs streamline and optimize operational capabilities with the full stack of Oracle technologies and multicloud environments that meet enterprise requirements and strategies. 

While your company experiences the inevitable pause that the COVID-19 pandemic will bring to operations and sales, it’s the perfect time for you to start planning for the tools and systems you’ll need to pull ahead quickly and confidently as soon as business returns. 

At the very least, right now is a great time to start investigating the many time- and cost-saving solutions you’ve been meaning to look into, and the best way to start your investigations is to speak with an expert. 

 

Contact the experts at Centroid to learn about your options and to start planning your next steps.