Intelligent Tech Channels Issue 61 | Page 54



Thiani Ramaya , Business Practice Lead for Microsoft at Westcon- Comstor , discusses how Microsoft data centres in Johannesburg and Cape Town provide 24 / 7 support for critical services in South Africa .

With the help of data centres , we can take advantage of many conveniences in our everyday lives . They are the physical infrastructure behind cloud computing . In South Africa , Microsoft data centres in Johannesburg and Cape Town are operating around the clock to support a spectrum of critical services , from the life-saving work of doctors and first responders to essential services like groceries and online banking .

At the same time , data centres also empower everyday necessities like food deliveries , remote work and video calls to family . As South Africans deal with the increasing frustration of rolling blackouts , market researchers and energy consultants are calling data centres critical enablers of modern society – including how they foster hybrid work schedules that reduce travel and allow office buildings to use less electricity , thereby reducing the load on the country ’ s ailing energy infrastructure .
Working in the background
Despite the role data centres play in different aspects of people ’ s lives , most people do not give them a second thought . Yet , from healthcare to grocery shopping , from online schools to online banking , it is
Thiani Ramaya , Business Practice Lead for Microsoft at Westcon-Comstor difficult to think of many corners of life that are not dependent on cloud services hosted in data centres .
Data centres are critical on a national and a societal level but are also essential if you look from the perspective of individual businesses . Most South African companies have either fully migrated to the cloud or use hybrid clouds and external data services . Thus , it has become difficult to imagine a business operating and relying on just what they have in the server room .
For consumers themselves , the modern world would be far more time-consuming and arduous without the conveniences of online purchases and fully stocked stores . This spans products that provide the elements for family meals , clothes and the latest home repairs – in basic terms : food , clothing and shelter .
It is fair to say many items in your house , on your shelves , in your medicine cabinet , in your garage and in your dresser are there because of data centres .
Business operations
Data centres are also increasingly necessary for making businesses run efficiently . Many CEOs across South Africa seek ways to visualise and glean insights from their supply chains .
Global supply chains produce massive and diverse data streams . Data centres help companies make all that data accessible , manageable and insightful within the business between different departments . These data insights mean value creation , which adds to the bottom line .
In challenging times , businesses focus on improving the top line ( their revenues ) and customer insights . The focus is on the best ways to engage with the customer and increase the value proposition . They are doing that in more efficient ways by using the right channel to reach customers and
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