Despite the challenges faced since the Movement Restriction Order was enforced on the 18th of March, many business owners have decided to digitalise their operations, utilizing the Internet, Internet of Things (IoT) and cloud-based services to ensure operations continue with little to no disruption. We spend some time speaking (online, of course) to some business owners in the automotive sector to see how they adjusted their operations to the MCO.
Pomen Autodata Sdn. Bhd., the developer of the POMEN App, a mobile application that offers roadside assistance services to its users, has migrated all physical operations to Amazon Web Services (AWS) – an all-in-one cloud solution.
"Our platform is built 100% on the cloud, allowing us to continue our business especially during unavoidable yet necessary circumstances we are facing now due to COVID-19. The only difference here is that we work remotely, in order to maintain productivity. It is an added advantage for us as our business model is already cloud-dependent, making it natural for us to adapt to a remote working environment.", said Nazmi Najib, the founder, and chief technology officer of Pomen Autodata.
Pomen’s communication and task management has also migrated to the cloud, through web-based applications such as Trello, which allows users to update their tasks and handle communications remotely. Updates occur in real-time hence no time is wasted.
“Whenever my team completes or updates their task progress, I will get push notifications on my smartphone regarding their progress, enabling me to make informed decisions without the need for conducting physical meetings. Speaking of which, as what majority of other companies are doing, all-important meetings and discussions are also conducted virtually.”, explained Nazmi.
Omar Motor Solutions (OMS), known for their mobile and on-site motorcycle services, including fleet services has also taken the initiative to transition online, utilising readily available instant messaging applications such as WhatsApp to conduct meetings and discussions.
“Our main objective, for now, is to adhere to all Government’s efforts to curb the spreading of COVID-19. Since our operations (motorcycle servicing) require close contact with other human beings, tools, and equipment, we have decided to operate in a limited timeframe with minimal workers and we will only accept cases which require immediate servicing.”, said Omar Azmi, Director of OMS.
Even OEMS are embracing digitalisation by introducing e-stores and other online shopping platforms.
TC Euro Cars, the sole franchise holder of Renault Malaysia, recently launched their online shopping platform, digitalising the entire purchasing process, from submitting required documents to purchase a vehicle right up to managing monthly payments of the purchased vehicle. Renault’s e-shop is available 24/7 with the option to either purchase or subscribe to a vehicle.
Migrating business operations to a digital platform indirectly act as a system integrator, eventually achieving end-to-end digital integration across the entire value chain, enabling businesses to continue operations remotely. Digitalisation will also benefit the consumers, as they can continue to enjoy an array of services and products (without any human contact) at the comfort of their own homes, despite the current global situation.