Q: Worldwide, not just in Romania, we look at a very uncertain future regarding global trends. Many analyses include “assuming no material deterioration in the macroeconomic environment’’. What does this mean for you as the leader of SoftwareOne Romania? Is it different in your industry? What certainties do you see, assuming no material deterioration in the macroeconomic environment?
Mr. Dragos Teodorescu: As the leader of SoftwareOne in Romania, navigating an uncertain future in terms of global trends is a complex challenge. We are continuously adapting to changes globally, acknowledging that specific predictions or strategies are contingent on the overall stability of the global or national economy.
When businesses prioritize technology as a competitive advantage, the growing importance of digital transformation, cloud adoption, and software licensing cost optimization represent certainties. The macroeconomic environment is based on ecosystems, having different stakeholders, from authorities and regulators to customers, partners, service providers and vendors. SoftwareOne is recognized for its strong expertise in software asset management and a comprehensive portfolio allowing clients to address multiple technology needs and to sustain customers to manage relationships with complex ecosystems within a single organization.
In a stable economic environment, customers may continue to invest in technology solutions to enhance efficiency, security, and agility. Therefore, innovation will continue to shape the industry. Being prepared to adapt and embrace new technologies, their ecosystem is a certainty.
Some global trends, such as the shift to remote work regulations and compliance with new standards, will continue to challenge companies’ ability to adapt to these changes, their resilience and flexibility.
Q: How do you characterize the software industry year 2023 (compared to what you expected last year) and your expectations for 2024?
Mr. Dragos Teodorescu: From a general perspective, based on trends and expectations, the demand for software solutions for hybrid cloud systems, especially in the context of digital transformation - cloud adoption and cybersecurity - is expected to remain strong. The high diversity in IT solutions and the speed of technological changes require a high level of expertise to ensure successful implementations at lower costs and increased efficiency from a business perspective. Thus, clients request more advisory and professional services from strong partners with broad expertise like us. Changes in data privacy and cybersecurity regulations are expected to influence software development and compliance requirements (ex: EU AI Act).
The adoption of cloud services is expected to continue. In 2023, more organizations have started to test hybrid multi-cloud environments, and cloud providers will continue to expand their offerings.
It’s a new beginning with artificial intelligence (AI) and automation. These technologies will play a significant role in enhancing productivity and decision-making.
Sustainability and environmental responsibility are expected to be prominent themes. SoftwareOne focuses on more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly software solutions (ex: CSRD Directive).
Q: As a leader in your industry, how do you see the process of diversifying the sources of income, let’s say, from software sales to IT services? What are the trends in the Romanian market?
Mr. Dragos Teodorescu: Many companies in the industry, both globally and in Romania, are transitioning from traditional software acquisitions to IT services or mixed structures. This shift includes services such as software development, software/platforms as a service, consulting, managed services, and cloud solutions. This transition allows our customers to forecast recurring revenue streams, budget correctly and build long-term client relationships to adapt to changing market dynamics.
Providing consulting and advisory services related to IT strategy, digital transformation, and cloud adoption has become a profitable source of income for our clients and us. Clients often seek guidance to implement their business objectives with optimized technology investments.
Managed services, including Applications Management and Support, have increased. SoftwareOne offers those services to meet the evolving needs of clients seeking to outsource their IT operations.
Romanian businesses, like many worldwide, were investing in digital transformation initiatives. This drives demand for consulting services, cloud solutions, and software development to support those efforts.
Romania has a well-educated and skilled IT workforce. Five years ago, SoftwareOne decided to roll out one of its Extended Delivery Centers (xDC) in Bucharest, besides Warsaw and Sofia. The availability of a talented and motivated workforce supported income diversification through various IT services.
Q: Digitalization is the new mantra for the financial sector, including the banking and financial sectors. How can you help?
Mr. Dragos Teodorescu: Digitalization is a top priority for the financial sector, and SoftwareOne can offer valuable assistance to banks and financial institutions.
SoftwareOne provides advisory services to assist financial organizations in crafting effective digital transformation strategies. This includes identifying critical areas for digitalization, aligning technology with business goals, and developing a roadmap for implementation, as well as identifying areas for cost reduction while maintaining or improving service quality.
The company can assist in optimizing critical financial systems and applications
and eventually migrate them to the cloud in a hybrid way. Leveraging services such as Microsoft Azure, AWS, and Google Cloud to enhance scalability, security, agility and sustainable IT practices and solutions, we can also reduce the environmental footprint.
SoftwareOne’s expertise in software asset management can help financial institutions profitably shape their software license contracts and ensure compliance while managing costs effectively.
Leveraging data is crucial, especially in businesses connected to the financial sector. Data is the new queen, in the cloud or on-premises. SoftwareOne delivers data analytics and business intelligence solutions to extract actionable insights from all kinds of data, aiding decision-making and risk management.
SoftwareOne’s global presence allows it to serve financial institutions worldwide, being a valuable partner for multinational banks and organizations.
Q: What makes your strategy unique, and how do your Romanian clients benefit
Mr. Dragos Teodorescu: SoftwareOne’s strategy is underpinned by several unique aspects that set the company apart, and Romanian clients can benefit from these strategic strengths in several ways.
SoftwareOne combines a global presence with local expertise. The company operates in more than 90 countries, including Romania, meaning clients have access to global resources and a deep understanding of local markets and regulations. The breadth of offerings ensures that Romanian clients can address a wide range of technology needs through a single partner.
Our customer-centric approach ensures that the unique needs of Romanian clients are understood and met. The company collaborates closely with organizations to deliver tailored solutions aligned with their business goals and, essentially, to improve the customer experience.
SoftwareOne offers ongoing support and managed services, allowing Romanian clients to focus on their core business while ensuring that their IT infrastructure remains secure, efficient, and up to date.
Q: What tools are you using to leverage your company’s strengths and accelerate the implementation of your strategy to capitalize on long-term trends and opportunities such as the cloud?
Mr. Dragos Teodorescu: SoftwareOne, as a global technology company, utilizes various strategies and technologies to leverage its strengths and accelerate the implementation of its cloud solutions. Those approaches are designed to capitalize on long-term trends and opportunities in the technology industry, especially in cloud adoption.
To help clients with cloud technology strategies and digital transformation, SoftwareOne has developed consulting and advisory frameworks to guide clients through the planning and implementation of IT initiatives.
Here are the newest Microsoft Copilot and OpenAI Advisory services:
SoftwareOne utilizes cloud management platforms and tools to help clients optimize their resources, control costs, and manage cloud environments efficiently. These platforms, like GoatPath, provide visibility into cloud-agnostic usage and offer recommendations for cost savings.
SAM tools are crucial for managing software licenses and ensuring compliance. SoftwareOne deploys top Gartner’s SAM tools (ex: Flexera, Snow, ServiceNow) to help clients effectively manage their software assets and minimize compliance risks.
Automation and Orchestration tools can help clients streamline repetitive tasks and processes, saving time and reducing the risk of human errors.
Q: Many companies needed to adapt their IT environments to support the increased capacity requirements in a very short time. We mention remote working or web conferencing solutions boosted by the pandemic. That means more licensing, more support, and more maintenance costs. In this context, how can you help companies and partners to reduce IT costs?
Mr. Dragos Teodorescu: Cost-saving and cost-avoidance solutions are part of SoftwareOne’s strategies to help companies and partners reduce business costs in the context of increased IT capacity requirements and the need to adapt to rapidly changing environments.
SoftwareOne is a leader in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for SAM Managed Services. We help organizations right-size their software licenses by matching the licensing model to actual usage. This prevents over-licensing and reduces the financial burden associated with unnecessary licenses.
Our strong partnerships with major technology providers allow them to negotiate favourable pricing and terms for software licenses and services on behalf of their clients. This can result in cost savings and more cost-effective agreements.
As many organizations move to the cloud, SoftwareOne, as a world leader in FinOps (Cloud Financial Management), can assist in optimizing cloud resources. This involves ensuring that resources are appropriately scaled, identifying unused or underutilized resources, and implementing cost-effective cloud management strategies.
Q: What’s your view on AI-driven software solutions?
Mr. Dragos Teodorescu: SoftwareOne provides thought leadership and guidance on AI trends, best practices, and emerging use cases to keep clients informed about the potential of AI.
We tailor AI solutions to the unique needs of our clients. This can involve developing AI-driven applications, algorithms, or models to address specific business challenges. We also assist clients in deploying AI workloads on cloud platforms, ensuring scalability and performance.
AI can also be used for cost optimization, including optimizing software and cloud costs, which aligns with SoftwareOne’s expertise in software asset management and cloud optimization.
Q: Let’s move now from clients and partners to employees. Creating the best work environment for employees is a significant goal. Could you elaborate on the specific measures taken to enhance the workplace experience at your company and how this contributes to overall organizational success?
Mr. Dragos Teodorescu: An optimal work environment for Swomies, SoftwareOne’s employees, is essential for their satisfaction, productivity, and overall organizational success.
SoftwareOne prioritizes employee well-being by offering Benefits programs focusing on physical and mental health. This can include access to fitness facilities, mental health resources, stress management, and wellness incentives.
Also, flexibility in work arrangements, such as remote work options and flexible hours, helps employees to enhance their work-life balance and improve overall job satisfaction.
Opportunities for professional growth and development, including training, certifications, and career advancement, contribute to employee engagement and retention.
Promoting diversity and inclusion fosters a more inclusive workplace where employees from different backgrounds feel valued and can contribute their unique perspectives and talents. SoftwareOne Delivery Center (xDC) in Romania accommodates people from different cultures.
SoftwareOne provides mentorship and coaching programs to support career growth and skill development, where employees reach their full potential (ex: Buddy Program, Run at Best, Coaching for Performance, etc).
Recognizing and rewarding employee achievements and contributions also boosts morale and motivation. Emphasizing company culture, values, and employee engagement through team-building events, social activities, and cultural celebrations can strengthen the workplace community.
Q: These are all our questions. Do you have something else to add for our readers?
Mr. Dragos Teodorescu: Thank you, Major Companies in Romania, for this opportunity! To conclude, for our customers and potential partners of SoftwareOne, I would like to bring to an end:
SoftwareOne has a global presence and a local one, including Romania. Their international reach ensures that clients benefit from a global perspective and access a wide range of resources.
The wide range of success stories highlights how SoftwareOne has helped clients overcome challenges for more than 20 years to optimize their IT environments and achieve their business objectives.
SoftwareOne is committed to staying at the forefront of technology trends and innovation. As a world leader in cost optimization, especially in software asset management and cloud services, it provides a client-centric approach where the customers can access competitive pricing, dedicated support, and cutting-edge technologies.
You can also find the full interview in the document below: