CIO South Africa returns to the Mother City to host Skills Summit


On 13 March, the CIO South Africa community will connect with Capetonian CIOs through an engaging dialogue, where they will share their experiences with each other, and explore innovative strategies for upskilling existing teams.

CIO South Africa had a successful first visit to Cape Town and exciting discussion on how to build future-fit AI teams that saw 80 formidable CIOs pack the 180 Lounger in Cape Town’s CBD. This time, the fastest-growing IT community in the country will leverage off that high, to discuss all things skills. With the demand for specialised technical skills, IT leaders are central to addressing a critical skills gap in the technology landscape.

The 180 Lounger undoubtedly has the best and most uninterrupted views of the city, and refreshments and delicious canapés are also on the menu.

CHRO South Africa community Manager Sungula Nkabinde will kick off the evening with the Skills Think Tank: the ultimate tech talent strategy soundboard, followed by a debriefing session with CIO South Africa community manager Nomahlubi Sonjica, to uncover what ideas emerge.

The special guest speakers – Pieter de Villiers, founding CEO of Clickatell and board member of The Collective X – will then host the evening’s keynote discussion. He is a South African-born, Silicon Valley-experienced entrepreneur and angel investor with a passion for chat commerce and the empowerment of people. Pieter is also one of the youngest mobile industry veterans, with over 22 years of experience in global telecoms, mobile messaging, and mobile payments, backed by top-tier Silicon Valley VC firm, Sequoia Capital.

Absa group CIO Johnson Idesoh, UWC ICT director Raymond Crown, Alula Technologies group CIO Yunus Scheepers, and Liquid Intelligent Technologies client executive Eddie Dryden will then jump on stage to discuss strategies on how IT teams can work smarter, not harder.

In an exclusive interview with CIO South Africa, Johnson once spoke on skills, people and purpose. “People want to work for an important purpose, and I think large companies tend to miss that. As a tech employee, you’re fundamentally helping a customer with a new experience,” he said. “You’re fundamentally helping a customer reach their financial goals. Because of you, the customer is now in a better financial position. That’s the purpose, and that’s why I spend a lot of time linking our technology with the purpose of the organisation.”

In another exclusive interview with CIO South Africa, Yunus said, “you need to think about your technical skills retention strategy quite carefully as an organisation, and remind yourself that people do have the power to leave if they want to and will exercise that power if they do not feel fulfilled.”

Entelect GM Tomislav Ravic will then do a Tech Talent Tango. Why? That’s because Entelect has a reputation for assembling highly talented multidisciplinary teams, which have end-to-end craft competencies, including business analysis, data science and engineering, quality assurance, experience design, and software engineering. Tomislav will share insights to help CIOs build future-fit teams.

EOH’s Ziaad Suleman, on the other hand, will wrap up the evening with key insights. Ziaad stressed the need for multifaceted solutions to the complex challenges faced in the tech industry – recognising the diverse demands for skills like robotics, AI and development at CIO Day in July 2023.

Guests will be ushered to the rooftop for networking and drinks to seal off the evening.

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