Three technology trends that impact CIOs today were the thrust of this year’s CIO Workshop.
"As companies transition from downturn to growth, CIOs today are confronted with three new phenomena that have been thrust upon them: one, the take-up of innovative enabling technologies such as cloud computing, two, the coming of age of social media, and three, the different set of expectations that the new generation workforce and customers have on enterprise IT," said Ng Kuo Pin, executive partner, Accenture at the 24th CIO Workshop.
Jointly organised by Accenture and Singapore’s Information Technology Management Association (ITMA), the workshop was held over four days from 25-28 May 2011 in the island nation’s Red Dot Museum, and also in Hong Kong and Shenzhen.
The theme for this year's conference was "From downturn to growth: The complexities that come with it", reflecting the impact of the three technology trends on CIOs today.
C-level executives need to create trust across the organisation as they attempt to latch onto the current economic revival, according to Lee Kwok Cheong, CEO, SIM Global Education.
"Organisations need to be transparent to their employees. You must communicate openly as you bring about your ideas to your employees," said Lee, giving his keynote address in Singapore.
To inspire employees, organisations should "set an exciting vision, something aspirational, otherwise they will seek employment elsewhere," added Lee.
OSIM's founder and CEO Ron Sim took a different path to guiding his staff. "I would ask them where they see themselves in three years' time, what role they have in the company," said Sim.
Sim revealed that a strategic restructuring initiative during the recent recession tasked the IT team to create a system with a clearer view of the business. "Now we can find out the sales performance of each shop at three different times of the day," he added.
Gen X, Y and Beyond
The convergence of the baby boomer, X and Y generations at the workplace was the topic for the panel discussion in Singapore chaired by Grace Chng, editor, Digital Life, Singapore Press Holdings.
Panellist Fum-Ko Joon Chin, people development & engagement (organisational development function), Infocommunications Development Authority of Singapore (IDA), raised the point that workers should not be too dependent on the use of technology, such as social media, to communicate. "We must be the masters, not slaves, of technology," she said. She added that when IDA moved to a new office, numerous meeting areas were set up for workers to engage face-to-face, instead of relying on technology.
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