Dare to learn with AWS to succeed in digital age
The Vietnamese market is changing at a rapid pace nowadays, treading towards digitalisation to stand on par with other regional markets in the digital age. Chawapol Jariyawiroj, country manager for Amazon Web Services in Thailand and Vietnam, delved into the trend of technology applications in Vietnam and the region, and how individual cases of success change business.
Business has transformed in Vietnam over the years. The conversation technology providers like us have with enterprises is wholly different now. A few years back, we had to address a lot of fear and doubt, which is very normal to any new business adopting technology.
The big questions we had to answer were “Why cloud?”, “What are the benefits of the cloud?”, “How security on the cloud is run?”, and “What are the latencies?” Now it is all about “How?” because they now see evidence for the gains in digital business in the industry leaders who have adopted with great success. The conversation has turned from “Why do I need the cloud?” into “What is the best way to adopt technology?” – and that is only with traditional businesses, there is not even a conversation with digital native businesses because most of them were already born in the cloud.
Similar to most markets in the ASEAN, we see tremendous change in Vietnam and we entered the market knowing full well that the first one or two years will be about producing concrete gains, executing our promises, and creating cases of success because each and every real business helped and issue solved talks volumes more about the benefits of the cloud than simple words.
Vietnam and the region
We have actually seen pretty similar patterns across the ASEAN. There may be some slight differences but many of the countries have only started down the path to technology adoption two-three years ago with some of the digital natives. These are the type of customers who were born in the cloud and most of them are trying to disrupt the market.
Initially, there were a lot of concerns and uncertainties, and large enterprises have a very complex internal process and existing technology, but what we have seen in the past two or three years throughout the ASEAN, including Vietnam, is that businesses and customers now demand a lot of new services and new user experiences. These are driving enterprises to adopt technology faster. In order to allow them to build and continue competing with both the Digital Native Businesses and others, we have seen different segments of industries adopting technology in the past few years, with financial services, telco, manufacturing and retail, as all good examples. These are probably the top three to four industry sectors that are most actively looking at adapting Amazon Web Services (AWS) – a trend shared in many markets.
Another similarity is that within each of these industries there are always what we call the innovators and early adopters of technologies. For Vietnam, we have customers like Vietjet, VPBank, Masan or VTV – these are the enterprises that have adopted technology first and have been leading their industry peers because they are gaining a lot of advantages over technology. A lot of times customers approach things that they do not know or do not understand with care and reservations.
We are investing heavily in the Vietnamese market in order to try to increase our coverage, so that we have the team here to help and support customers. Nothing speaks louder than an actual case of success of a customer who has gained agility, availability, security, and a lot of cost savings in order to contribute to building new ideas to their business.
We do not break down the market to the of each country, but I could say that overall, for the past three years we have seen each of the ASEAN countries growing at very similar paces. Vietnam is the latest country where we have established market presence, but we are very happy with our contributions to our Vietnamese customers, and we are very glad to be working with each of these big customers in order to help them through the transition from older technologies to new technologies.
Ideas from growing demand
People are looking at Vietnam as a market full of opportunities, this allows us to work even closer with Vietnamese customers because we believe that even though you have regional or global services, each of the countries, including Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, has a uniqueness. The more Vietnamese businesses grow, we are going to see a lot more ideas coming in, and a lot of these ideas will originate from Vietnam and grow outside of the country, instead of ideas created outside of the country and coming to Vietnam. That will be something very exciting for us.
We work with our customers, listen to what they do. We do not come to the customers and sell them specific product solutions. Instead, we listen to their business objective. What do you want to do? What types of experiences they want to create? What are the challenges that stand between their ideas and reality?
We work with them and then we bring many of our solutions and technologies to help them bring the idea into reality. We can only do this if we have a very strong local team, both people who are responsible for the business-side of the communication with the customer and people for the technical conversation.
There are some Vietnamese businesses who found a lot of success in the country and then continued to find a lot of success outside of it. FPT is a good example. FPT was the first Vietnamese partner to achieve AWS’ premier status in the ASEAN. The company then leveraged the acquired skillset to expand their business outside of Vietnam. I believe FPT is now running business in Europe, the US, and other countries in the ASEAN as well.
This is just one example. Nowadays in this industry, executives are getting to see and hear from their peers and maybe some executives from other industries and their new ideas. Banks in Vietnam are listening to banks in Singapore and Thailand and the US, looking at what they are doing in mobile banking, payment gateway, all of these new ideas. But then, Vietnam also has a lot of things that are unique that require these ideas to be customised, to fit the Vietnamese consumers’ preference.
Grab is the other example that proves the way we work with our customers. Grab has operations in so many countries and they have been with AWS for a long time and we are glad to be working very closely with them as they are expanding their business through the region. The fact that they are doing well in Vietnam is very positive for us, not just because they are growing faster but because they are delivering new customer experiences for the Vietnamese consumers.
The fact that Grab is another success case shows that if you have an idea and you can deliver a new user experience to customers, then there is business can be made. That is very positive because it encourages more people, both inside and outside Vietnam, to continue coming up with new ideas. If you can deliver better experiences for the consumers, there are always business opportunities.
It helped create excitement and business opportunities in Vietnam because Vietnam has 90-100 million people, even more than Thailand. This represents tremendous opportunities for this business.
Technology is there for you. Last year we created 1,957 new services and features and put them onto the cloud. If you divide it by 365, this is about five new capabilities per day. It does not matter if you are in Vietnam, in South Africa, Brazil, or even Sri Lanka – you can access them.
Now, are you willing to learn, are you committed to try and test it? If you are, we have people in Vietnamese who can help you with it.