Sponsored: The new CIO frontier

The number of applications migrating to cloud environments is increasing significantly.

04 July 2023

Donna Mostert Huawei Line of Business Manager at Mustek.

The number of applications migrating to cloud environments is increasing significantly. Moving these applications to the cloud, however, has offloaded much of the day-to-day maintenance to an as-a-service vendor, reducing the resources required to maintain legacy systems. This changes the nature of the daily work enterprise IT staff do.

As enterprise apps and workforces become increasingly distributed, it’s important that CIOs remain focused on a centralised approach to decision-making, governance, and oversight to reduce risk. Evolving markets and technologies, combined with an increase in distributed teams, translate to more projects and greater frequency of product releases.

Many enterprises are enlisting citizen developers to help manage volumes of work. However, if not managed correctly, application development capabilities that enable collaboration of IT and business on enterprise projects can also introduce shadow IT.

Projects built with unsanctioned low-code tools or outside of IT’s knowledge, governance or business-led development can expose organisations to cyber attacks and compliance violations, which emphasises the need for CIOs to establish rules and a governance framework so that distributed teams can develop and implement new capabilities, aligned with enterprise requirements.

CIOs can better manage and control decentralised development teams through platforms that can integrate with enterprise systems and new apps, provide centralised access to information, workload visibility and adhere to a common set of rules.

One ongoing problem in this era of the collaborative workplace remains finding and retaining talented professionals with problem-20235solving and team leadership skills. CIOs should consider reskilling where tasks are being automated or roles outsourced, to help close the hiring gap. Transitioning skills into such areas as AI-based technologies and cybersecurity, and adding essential soft skills, provides opportunities to thrive.

Budget imbalances

As-a-service outsourcing, operational digitisation, challenging departmental budgets and competition for talent are all putting fiscal pressure on CIOs. However, with a digital-first approach being crucial for business success, enterprise IT funding will need to be decentralised to allow for mission-critical work.

It’s also important that they collaborate with finance colleagues, creating financial models based on accurate data. This will make it easier to manage the budget and address need versus affordability imbalances.

Changes in enterprise IT are happening at a head-spinning pace as technology and IT’s role continue evolving. In a recent survey, local CIOs and CTOs said their responsibilities have already progressed to include such transformational tasks as keeping current with latest technologies (41%) and innovating on new products and solutions (35%). As CIOs are essential collaborators to business strategies, their responsibilities will continue changing. Every successful digital transformation journey demands a fully-devoted, highly-invested and skilled IT team.

CIOs can resolve team issues, preparing employees for the future through positive communication and relaying the benefits of digital transformation projects.

Setting crystal-clear priorities, connected to business outcomes, investing in highly-skilled people, specifically leaders and those with digital and analytics skills, and empowering and motivating people through an understandable change management plan will all benefit CIOs. Rapidly adopting new digital practices and keeping digital disciplines up-to-date through ongoing and engaging training that considers human interactions and behaviours is vital.

Huawei’s collaboration tools, like the IdeaHub S2ecosystem, can address the challenge of training hundreds of employees across departments and regions, streamlining costs, reducing time-consuming issues and advancing digital adoption. Such tools can also help provide the technology to support career growth.

Organisational well-being

As rapid technology changes transform how people live and operate their businesses, cyber threats and security risks become increasingly more complex. The CIO’s cybersecurity role is absolutely vital to organisational well-being.

Mastering global mobile communications both simplifies management processes and better meets client expectations. However, while still responsible for the management of technical transitions, the placement of data and resolving any legal issues, CIOs still face having a different set of IT and management skills and need to adopt a different approach to data security for managing apps in the cloud.

Companies with entrepreneurial and innovation-based partnership foundations, such as those enjoyed between Huawei and Mustek, can make calculated moves like improvement of local offerings. We walk alongside Huawei, also serving our resellers and solution providers. Such relationships lead to practical and accelerated solutions, particularly in terms of IT infrastructure and sustainable solar energy, plus datacentre facilities.

Through Mustek, Huawei South Africa has set up a dedicated commercial division to expand this market and SOHO product ranges, inviting resellers to sign up to bring a range of solutions to their small and medium customers. Together, Huawei and Mustek continue recruiting partners to cover this wide-ranging market.