The Record - Issue 17: Summer 2020

90 www. t e c h n o l o g y r e c o r d . c om by the virtual machines hosted in the cloud. This has allowed Alstom, a leader in integrated trans- port systems, to seamlessly shift more than 2,000 engineers to a work-at-home strategy in under a week, saving them an estimated €2 million ($2.24 million) a day. Beyond remote work, sales and services opportunities were all but lost for most busi- nesses during the early stages of the crisis. To enable positive brand experiences, deal- erships leveraged tools like Dynamics 365 Commerce to continue retail transactions and the Microsoft Bot Framework to maintain deep and immersive customer engagements and deal with significant shifts in online demand until services can resume. Planning for the comeback Beyond the immediate crisis response, auto- makers are also well on their way to planning the comeback, looking for cost savings to match current reductions in product demand and cash flow, while planning for economic recovery. This means that factories and supply chains are being reconfigured, with employee safety at the centre. Technologies enabling remote assistance are well-positioned to help employees maintain social distancing and still be productive in the factory. By leveraging tools such as Microsoft HoloLens, Dynamics 365 Remote Assist, and partner solutions like PTC’s Vuforia Chalk, workers can be remote, and yet still be right next to someone that needs assistance. Automakers also need to have good visibility into their supply chain, including the inventory and manufacturing capabilities of their suppli- ers. Microsoft empowers automakers to take control of their critical warehousing, unpredicta- ble demand, backlogged goods and supply chain by streamlining operations with Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management and rapidly build and deploy supply chain solutions with Azure IoT Central. With Microsoft Teams and High Performance Computing solutions, automakers have been able to transition thousands of employees to remote working