StarHub backs cloud to deliver its DARE+ transformation

StarHub backs cloud to deliver its DARE+ transformation
StarHub CEO CEO Nikhil O.J. Eapen.

Starts to scale up its use.

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StarHub will double down on its use of the cloud to deliver the intended benefits of its current five-year transformation and growth program of work, which it calls DARE+.

DARE+ was unveiled in November last year as a successor to an earlier transformation called DARE, which delivered cost savings of over S$270 million, well above target.

The new transformation is anchored in more digital, faster value creation, growth realisation and customer experience.

StarHub CEO Nikhil O.J. Eapen told the recent AWS Summit Asean 2022 that the telco saw the cloud as a key enabler for DARE+, and deliberately changed its direction last year in preparation.

“We were already using the cloud for several years, mostly SaaS tools, but to achieve the full benefits of DARE+ we decided to fundamentally change our approach and move to an agile, cloud-based IT stack versus a legacy telco-centric stack,” Eapen said.

“Amazon Web Services is a big part of our journey to this full cloud-based IT stack, for us to unlock benefits such as faster go-to-market, rapid development [and] multiple change cycles.”

Eapen said that StarHub had set up a secure landing zone, and used its own “AWS DirectConnect product to connect our network via an 80Gbps secure low-latency connection with our AWS landing zone.”

A landing zone, in AWS parlance, “is a well-architected, multi-account AWS environment that is a starting point from which you can deploy workloads and applications.” Well-architected itself is AWS-specific language that broadly means best practice.

Eapen said that StarHub is now starting to scale up its use of AWS to host consumer and enterprise IT workloads.

“We’ve been on [this] part of this journey for almost a year,” he said.

“While we haven’t yet unlocked the full benefits, we were able to take multiple on-premises IT systems offline and move workloads onto the cloud.”

Eapen flagged an expansion of StarHub’s relationship with AWS, including the establishment of a data lake, the use cases for which include hosting “a 360-degree view of our customers.”

To support the growing use of AWS, Eapen said StarHub is “investing in enabling cloud skills but we are also emphasising behaviours, processes, mechanisms, that drive innovation.”

“Since September of last year, we’ve been working with AWS in different ways to empower and encourage our employees to experiment with new ideas,” he said.

“This includes sharing sessions between the AWS and StarHub leadership teams around culture, process and people.

“In addition, we have small teams experimenting together with different ways to drive innovation. 

“We’ve done a series of workshops, facilitated by Amazon, on how to apply their ‘working backwards’ process.

“It is through this combination - cloud-based system, people, processes, culture - that we will deliver DARE+.”

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