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The value of resilience as a prerequisite for business success in fast-changing environments has long been clear. The pandemic, however, catapulted resilience to the forefront as indispensable to business sustainability and relevance.
If businesses have learned one thing during the pandemic it is that resilience, rather than being a tactic to respond to crisis, is a discipline cultivated over time. Today, to not have a digital strategy is to not have a strategy. To build resilience at work, organisations need to start thinking about virtual and remote models, provision of tools that enable collaboration from anywhere, and strategies to look after their peoples’ mental health and wellbeing.
Data protection challenges are undermining organisations’ abilities to execute digital transformation initiatives globally, according to the Data Protection Report 2021, which has found that 58% of backups fail, leaving data unprotected.
In an age where a business is now largely conducted online, access to reliable and fast internet connection is now more important than ever. Due to COVID-19, supply chain systems and customer service have moved online, and business broadband is playing an essential role in making this happen.
It’s hard to imagine a world without technology – the speed and ease of the internet, and daily innovation that continues to disrupt business models. Across industries, we are starting to notice businesses of all sizes embrace the digital economy to create value, increase efficiency, and adapt to stay ahead of competitors.
The Presidential Commission Report on the 4th Industrial Revolution makes several strategic recommendations, but it needs to be followed by agile policy and regulation. The Presidential Commission on the 4th Industrial Revolution (the Commission) was tasked with drawing up a strategy to enable South Africa to participate fully in the fourth industrial revolution (the 4IR). Its report was published on 23 October 2020.
With the Black Friday shopping frenzy around the corner, the digital economy this year is expected to receive an enormous boost as many people will want to avoid crowds and take their shopping online. After a difficult year marked by severe disruptions and decreased demand, businesses will also be relying on this period to make up for losses due to the pandemic.
Retailers are transforming their digital capabilities to attract new customers and stay competitive in a rapidly evolving industry. The global pandemic has shown us the importance of being able to quickly shift with changes in the environment, for example, enabling contactless payments, supporting a remote workforce, and pivoting to entirely new business models.
Internet access has come a long way from the R28,000 it cost for a 256kbps connection in 1995. Even prior to the lockdown, almost 500,000 homes and more than 114,000 business premises were connected to fibre according to FTTX Council research from the end of June 2019. Of course, having high-speed access does not necessarily solve all problems.
The paper details competition and regulatory issues in the South African digital economy and sets out the Commission's intended strategic actions in relation to competition law issues, and proposed strategic actions for other regulators to consider concerning their respective regulatory areas, namely telecommunication and broadcasting, data protection and financial services regulators.
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