HPE supports government digital drive
Sahem Azzam, General Manager of HPE UAE discusses how the company is helping government organisations with digital transformation
Sahem Azzam, General Manager of HPE UAE discusses how the company is helping government organisations with digital transformation.
What is HPE doing with the government sector in the region?
First, we expanded our go-to-market model and we assigned the right resources and the calibre of resources to address government requirements; we want to make sure that HPE has a direct presence with our customers, we are also leveraging our ecosystem and partners to deliver and contribute to our go-to-market strategy.
We identified several areas of focus which we are investing in, as we see them as potential for the future. Digital services such as IaaS, SaaS, PaaS, DRaaS, Backup-as-a-Service and many others are offered to help governments to be able to deploy their new applications faster, and to cater for infrastructure requirements. e-Government is enriching government services which requires a solutions-based approach; this fits into our new strategy of providing the systems integration capabilities of our Technology Services arm to bring best-of-breed technologies and expertise to our customers.
We are also fostering the utilisation of Internet of Things solutions, for the benefit of G2C services which will help governments to get a better profile of their citizens and to deliver bespoke services to them. We are promoting our digital services expertise and our ability to partner with customers to deliver such services, through support from bringing worldwide experts and consultants to the region.
HPE is one of the partners in creating the Smart Dubai Platform — what progress has been made on this project?
We have made great progress on this iconic project which will transform services in Dubai. Standup of the platform was already completed in December, and we are pursuing other milestones such as security capabilities (hardening, patching and other requirements) to ensure the platform is ready for the data ingestion phase.
Intensive testing is in progress and we are confident of the timelines. In parallel the DR implementation is on track and on time, with associated operations and SLA requirements.
What technology will be important for public sector in the next 18 months?
We believe that hybrid cloud solutions, IT consumption models and shared services are key areas of focus for the public sector, in addition to increasing demand for cyber security. All of these areas are interconnected and support an ultimate goal of secure, nimble and cost effective service-oriented IT infrastructure.
In the UAE, the public sector is striving to deliver better services to its citizens, and such technology initiatives will help them to innovate and have faster time-to-market. One of the priorities of the government’s National Innovation Strategy is technology infrastructure. This infrastructure is needed to fuel innovation, share data and enable services. HPE has the right framework to provide state-of-the-art infrastructure solutions to cater for these requirements. Our ecosystem and open platforms will enable the adoption of new technologies and help government to accommodate their future technology requirements.
Do you have any key areas of expertise you are focusing on for the UAE?
We have started by focusing on the education sector and we are proud of our contribution to the Mohammed Bin Rashid Smart Learning Program and the Ministry of Education, to enhance the education process in UAE.
We will continue to focus on this sector, and we have additional initiatives and ideas to help in the adoption of smart teaching and learning techniques. In HPE, we believe education is a journey and we fully comprehend what it takes to reach the destination. Management of change is one of the key pillars in addition to the technology itself. Our experts have references from around the world and it is part of our commitment to bring these experiences and knowledge to the UAE.
Policing, defence and government are also on our radar screen. With increased security requirements and a growing population, the UAE is demanding the latest technology to enhance the visa process and security checks, in addition to day-to-day security operations in the country. These sectors are highly interconnected and impact each other. We have done several projects with different entities in each domain at the local level. These projects have close co-operation between our local team, global team and our ecosystem to deliver an end-to-end solution.
With the spin-off of HPE Enterprise Services, how is HPE bringing solutions to market?
HPE’s Technology Services arm is part of the Enterprise group and it will continue to be after the spin-off of HPE Enterprise Services, which was mainly focussed on application development and IT outsourcing. Our Technology Services deliver unmatched depth and breadth of expertise with global reach.
With Technology Services we are able to work on the full lifecycle of a solution, starting by strategy and design, then solution implementation through to delivering operational support. We enjoy a very rich services portfolio in cloud computing, big data, IT Infrastructure, Internet of things, mobility and workplace and business process. HPE Technology Services enjoys system integrations capabilities which led several iconic and transformational projects in the region similar to the Smart Dubai project.
Government IT budgets are under pressure, how are you helping public sector to put in place the core infrastructure in a cost effective way?
We understand the pressure on IT budgets and we in HPE are looking at different ways to handle such challenges. We offer two solutions to deal with infrastructure in a very cost effective way. The first is HPE Flexible Capacity, an infrastructure service offering on-demand capacity that combines the agility and economies of the public cloud and the security and performance of on-premises IT.
HPE Flexible Capacity provides a consumption-based IT payment model that aligns cash flow to actual capacity usage. An HPE Datacenter Care Support team acts as an extension of your team to plan your needs and help you operate your hybrid IT. HPE owns, and supports your choice of on-premises equipment. Pay for what you use based on metered usage and access self-service reporting to forecast future demand and an on-site buffer allows you to quickly scale up capacity when needed, and avoid spending on unused capacity.
The second way we help with budgets is transformation of funding with HPE financial services which will enable government customers to shift their CAPEX to OPEX. Rethink the way they acquire, pay for and use IT. We have different offerings and programs in HPE financial services which will help our government customers to look to at IT as an investment rather than cost with a predictable ROI.
What sort of investment have you put into cloud/ enabling hybrid cloud for customers in the region?
We are already offering on-premise cloud solutions to our customers with a pay-per-use model, this offering allows customers not only to manage their expenditure and look at different financing options but minimize the risk of over-designing and underutilized infrastructure solutions.
We have a flexible non-lock-in cloud strategy, to ensure utilizing the best offering in the market. We already announced a strategic partnership with Microsoft Azure and we are investing heavily together. Finally, our consultants and experts can work closely with customers to identify workloads that best fits for public cloud, private cloud, hybrid or traditional.