Latest News

Strengthening Alliance in the face of Adversity

Q4 2020 issue of the Philippine Retailing Magazine January 28, 2021

NO business or company is spared from the challenges brought by Covid-19. Even businesses that are digital in their core were caught by surprise with the rapid sweep of the Covid-19 in the country and the eventual quarantine imposed last March to curb the spread of the virus.

But this does not mean that businesses will succumb to this new environment. Instead, this was an opportunity to improve and think of new ways to serve clients, as in the case of Alliance Software Inc. Established in the Capital of Cebu on the year 2000, it soon expanded its office in Manila two years after, to cater to Luzon requirements. Then even extended reach to Tokyo, Japan in 2006.

The global IT services and solutions company, which since grew to become one of the Philippines largest and most respected independent software development outsourcing company offers services such as Application Development Outsourcing and Maintenance, Quality Assurance and Testing Services, UX design, System and Application Documentation and Vulnerability Assessment Services, among others.

In our interview with Alliance Software Inc., President Mr. Robert Cheng, he shared how the company started and how it is coping in the face their biggest challenge so far.

What is the biggest challenge for the company in the last two decades? How are you able to overcome this?

Covid-19 is by far the biggest challenge Alliance has faced in the last two decades. It came as a surprise where there are no precedent nor playbook for this kind of scenario. The pandemic and the resulting lockdowns severely affected both our internal operations and our client base.

But in the face of this challenge, our organization has also identified the following opportunities as we embrace the new reality: we must utilize technology as a driver and identify or create the new market trends.

What we did through technology is we expanded our presence online and to continue our operations, we provided work from home and flexible arrangement to our employees, as well as optimized our accounting process to encourage online channels. We also incorporated more automation in our processes.

During this time, we also found that data-driven decision making is essential. We focused on cloud computing and productivity using real-time info.

This Covid-19 challenge was also an opportunity for reimagination and transformation. The pandemic forced every one of us to recalibrate our offering by focusing on business sustainability & operational optimization by focusing on online commerce, cloud native enterprise resource planning and mobile workforce productivity.

How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected your business? Are there innovations or new products resulting from this pandemic that you started offering to your clients?

Like everyone else, Alliance is not spared in terms of being negatively impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. We experienced challenges, both on the revenue and operations levels.

On a positive note, we are happy that our team members showed a lot of resiliency and cooperation to cope with these changes. We are able to immediately adopt an effective remote work arrangement, allowing us to provide non-stop IT services and support to all of our clients.

We have also come up with new solutions that will help our clients cope with the new economic environment. These include: Alliance E-commerce which powers online stores with an all-in-one cloud solution that is easy to deploy, provides enhanced security, and is packed with features to accelerate sales and integrate seamlessly with popular and market leading retail solutions. Aside from this, we were also able to launch other new solutions like Alliance Checkpoint, Alliance Mobile JO, Alliance Expense Trail and the Alliance Safety Healthy Checklist, which are all part of Alliance edge workplace productivity solutions.

In relation to this pandemic and changes it brought, what are the transformations you would advise retailers to adapt?

At the forefront is the need for all retailers to ensure the safety and efficiency of their employees in this new normal environment.

Secondly, the new normal has shown how adopting new digital solutions can help push all retailers' business in the long run. New digital solutions are designed to empower SMEs with features made to enhance their business operations. More importantly, these new digital solutions are cloud based and normally on a Software as a Service (SaaS) model thereby prioritizing easy access and affordability.

What value do you see by being a PRA member?

PRA provides updates in the retail industry which helps our company see the direction on services and solutions for the retail industry.

Likewise, the local and international network of PRA gives us an opportunity to meet the key players in the retail industry retailers, wholesalers, distributors, suppliers, manufacturers and with other large influential business organizations.