What Does It Take for Digital Transformation Acceleration in Indonesia?

Jakarta. A reliable, ever-ready IT infrastructure and abundant tech talents will accelerate the digital transformation in Indonesia, according to data center provider Daya Cipta Mandiri Solusi.

The company's director Fanky Christian said both the government and private sector are running efforts to expedite the switch-over. The government has introduced the "Making Indonesia 4.0" campaign to spur technology adoption across industries. More businesses are developing their digital strategies as well.  

"Both the government and the private sectors are all on the right track when it comes to digital transformation. But all of these strategies depend on the infrastructure, availability as well as the digital talent readiness," Fanky told the Jakarta Globe in a recent interview. 

Fanky said the infrastructure is a key problem in Indonesia's digital shift. The government had already completed the Palapa Ring project, which brings fiber connectivity across the archipelago, particularly remote regions. But when the Covid-19 pandemic sets, low internet bandwidth remains an issue. For instance, students still struggle to connect to a reliable internet connection at home, thus interrupting their learning process.

"There is also the availability issue in which we have to make sure the IT infrastructure is accessible every time we need it.  Digital transformation is impossible if the availability and infrastructure issues are not solved," Fanky said. 

Both the government and the private sector are moving towards the cloud. The government also plans on building a national data center, he said.

In a recent US-Indonesia Investment Summit, Communication and Information Technology Minister Johnny G. Plate revealed the government is currently running on 24,700 apps to carry out state affairs, and this is far from efficient. The government is speeding up the development process to have the data center ready by 2023. Johnny said this data center is also part of the one-data policy, an initiative to help central and regional governments, institutions gain accurate data for better decision-making.

In the interview, Fanky named the lack of technology skills as another roadblock for Indonesia's digital transformation.

"There is still a lack of link-and-match between universities and the industry. If we do not prepare our tech talents, this digital transformation will remain an issue for the next five years," Fanky said.

President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo targets to generate 9 million digital talents by 2035, requiring at least 600,000 skillful people every year. To this end, the government has rolled out scholarships in the tech sector.

According to Fanky, the private sector is also putting in efforts to help address the digital gap. Daya Cipta Mandiri Solusi offers a free version of their all-in-one network monitoring software, Paessler's PRTG. Students can install the software and learn the ropes. So once they graduate, they are more prepared to face the 4.0 industry. Daya Cipta Mandiri Solusi has also given training for both the students and teachers.

"Tools like PRTG can help with the IT availability issue by monitoring the network, including bandwidth allocations," he said.