FEATURE: 2020, THE CIO’S PRIORITY
year’s annual ICT skills survey shows that
even as 5,000 immigrants enter the country
annually to fill key roles, just as many
practitioners emigrated. CIOs are
challenged to find ways to maximise the
talent they currently have while investing
in skills development via in-job training or
CSI initiatives to bolster the ICT industry
as a whole.
customer data from various platforms to
provide a more cohesive and personalised
experience. Businesses today are in a
constant state of flux, and companies
in every industry face a multitude of
challenges. CIOs, though, are in the best
position to implement game-changing
technology that puts their companies in
the best position moving forward.
into one that helps deliver on business
strategy. Providing the impetus to affect
this change is the growing digitalisation of
business. Technology is no longer limited to
software and infrastructure support. It now
permeates every facet of the organisation.
As we head into 2020, several key
imperatives will frame this change.
Digital meets cloud
CIOS OVERSEEING A TECHNOLOGY
REFRESH AT THEIR ORGANISATION
SHOULD TAKE ADVANTAGE OF
HOW DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION IS
Just as they bring a new level of reliability to
cybersecurity, cloud-based autonomous
systems help to alleviate the headache of
skills shortage and boost productivity.
Self-driving, self-securing and self-repairing
systems eliminate manual database
management, liberating database
administrators and others from mundane
tasks when they can be putting their expertise
to better use in generating business value.
IAN JANSEN VAN RENSBURG,
LEAD TECHNOLOGIST FOR
SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA AT
This is where modern cloud-native
applications built with the Kubernetes open
source container-orchestration system
become an important asset. By being able
to leverage from the high-performance
computing capabilities of the cloud
through these applications, CIOs can bring
their business ideas to life. These more
sophisticated technologies also make using a
multi-cloud strategy a more effective way of
addressing business challenges.
Data’s impact on
Customer experience is one of the most
powerful differentiators. Organisations must
be able to mine actionable insights from the
myriad information entering the business.
Few companies have the manpower to
“crunch” this information/ data, and provide
an expected real-time response, especially
as they strive to streamline their staff
contingent. The cost-effective solution
is data management and analytics tools
with built-in Machine Learning capabilities.
At Oracle, we predict that 85% of all
interactions will be automated by 2025.
Right now, globally, 89% of people use voice
assistants for customer service, and 69% of
enterprises have chatbots integrated into
their customer service functions.
As our Generation 2 Cloud kicks off,
more data-first options bring together
It all starts with the digital strategy. CIOs
must carefully consider how digitalisation is
not only impacting the company but also its
stakeholders. The connected environment
revolves around creating a smooth user
experience across multiple touchpoints.
So, while it is easy to be tempted by
simply rolling out the latest and greatest
technology, there must be a strategic reason
behind it. Getting to grips with the business
case of technology is therefore a priority.
If it makes sense to implement, then the
technology must be embraced, and solutions
developed around it to maximise the
Ian Jansen van Rensburg
Changing corporate mindsets and learning
how to effectively leverage disruption will
frame the CIO agenda in 2020. To manage
this, they must be at the forefront of the
business challenges their companies face,
understand the financial implications, and
link everything back to digital imperatives.
All businesses want to grow their
profitability, be more competitive, protect
their brand, nurture customer trust, and
be more innovative. Fundamental to tying
these elements together is a CIO willing to
transition from solely being a technologist
To optimally use this multi-cloud
environment, the CIO must understand
the costing models, the solutions that best
integrate into the current corporate strategy
and identify the areas where it will be
possible to save the most money.
Cost optimisation is a vital benefit especially
when it comes to using edge computing
technologies to supplement existing data
capturing, analysis, and intelligence. Part
of this relies on the Internet of Things
and making better sense of the data at
hand as well as how to optimise products
and services at the edge. Next year will
see a significant focus on decentralising
computing resources with the edge
becoming essential in this regard.