5 Leaders Who Championed Gender Equality In Their Organizations In 2019

Gender Equality and Diversity has been a buzzword for a few years now, at least when it comes to a company aligning its Public Communications with the latest sociological trend. In a survey of 1,000 respondents, Glassdoor found that 67% of job seekers overall look at workforce diversity when evaluating an offer. Numerous studies have linked increased productivity with the same phenomenon. 

While gender diversity seems an obvious way to go for all the companies, the implementation of it is a complex issue. From addressing the problem of “Equality of outcome vs equality of opportunity” to tackling one of the founding principles of capitalism: meritocracy; implementation of gender diversity is hard.

However, the leaders listed below went out of their way to not only champion gender diversity but to implement it in the right way in 2019.

Beth Whited

Executive Vice President and CHRO, Union Pacific Railroad

Union Pacific has constantly been named as the top gender diversity destination and one of the best employers, all because of leaders like Beth. Seeing a decline in engagement for female employees in 2018, she organized several diverse female employee focus groups. The result of these sessions was enhanced maternity benefits and also the introduction of paternity benefits. Additionally, Beth partnered with the company’s women’s ERG to better understand how the company could support the work-life integration needs of women in operating roles.

If the rail industry, which is thought to be a male-dominated domain can make such efforts, most companies can take this example. 

Sara Wechter

Global Head of Human Resources, Citi

In June 2019, Bloomberg revealed that men earn 29% more than women in the Citigroup. The numbers narrow down when adjusted to the number of hours worked and considering the job roles, however, the statistic is still a matter of concern, especially for the Global Head of Human Resources. Under Sara’s leadership, there is tremendous momentum behind efforts to increase diversity across the firm with a rigorous focus on outcomes. Realizing the business imperative of diversity, Sara has embedded these diversity goals alongside their business goals and is fostering an inclusive workplace environment for employees. 

Tony Colon

Head of CX Product Development, Cisco

Product development has traditionally been a male-dominated domain but Tony Colon wants to change that, at least for Cisco. To start with, he promoted diverse interview panels with equal gender representation in all panels. He also worked with Talent Acquisition to push for equal gender representation of female candidates in all candidate slates, regardless of market availability and type of role, including data scientists, software engineers, and engineering leaders were female candidates are far fewer.

Jennifer Abman Scott

Vice President of Strategic Partnerships, Society of Women Engineers

While more women than men are graduating with four-year degrees, women are significantly underrepresented in the engineering industry, and more likely to leave due to cultural influences. SWE partnered with career re-entry firm iRelaunch to implement a program that would target a hidden talent pool – women with technical degrees on career breaks – and engage them with internships as a vehicle for re-entry. The Task Force meets the needs of women wanting to return to work after a career break while also addressing the challenges encountered by employers in attaining a diverse workforce at all levels of their organizations. Jennifer has ensured that SWE utilizes its brand, global presence, and reach to find qualified talent and broaden the awareness of these programs to further the work of the Task Force. 

Vijay Anand

SVP Global Engineering, Intuit

Vijay is the Executive Sponsor of the Tech Women Intuit initiative which is a program created to attract, retain and advance women in technology roles at Intuit. His response to solving the diversity-in-tech problem in India was so effective that it changed the course of workplace culture across all of Intuit’s global sites, including adding tremendous support for women in tech at its headquarters in Mountain View. Vijay’s style of empathetic management resulted in several highly impactful programs that were implemented in India, including Women in Tech Ambassadors and the enhancement of benefits related to motherhood, caregiving, and flexible work options.

10 Ted-talks To Give You Perspective About Our Upcoming AI-Influenced Society

 

 

Like it or not, we are heading towards a society that will be deeply influenced hinged on dependance with AI. While there are many Ted-talks out there talking about the technological impact of AI, given below is a list of 10 videos that talk about the sociological repercussion.

How deepfakes undermine truth and threaten democracy-Danielle Citron

Deepfake technology lets people make false but persuasive images, videos and voice recordings of others. As law professor Danielle Citron explains, these highly convincing digital counterfeits can erode the truth. And if you can’t trust your own eyes and ears, you may begin to lose faith in governments, institutions and other people.

A bold idea to replace politicians – César Hidalgo

César Hidalgo has a progressive proposal for mending our tottering political system; automate it. In this provocative talk, he outlines a bold idea to bypass politicians by empowering citizens to create personalized AI representatives that participate directly in democratic decisions. Explore a new way to make collective decisions and expand your understanding of democracy.

The pharmacy of the future? Personalized pills, 3D printed at home – Daniel Kraft

We need to change how we prescribe drugs, says physician Daniel Kraft: too often, medications are dosed incorrectly, cause toxic side effects or just don’t work. In a talk and concept demo, Kraft shares his vision for a future of personalized medication, unveiling a prototype 3D printer that could design pills thatadapt to our individual needs.

How AI can save our humanity – Kai-Fu Lee

Conversations on AI often trigger doomsday thinking, but Kai-Fu Lee offers a more positive outlook. Lee, an innovator in the field of AI, blends gentle humor with heartfelt accounts of his experiences, which include his passage through cancer into remission and a new perspective on life. His position as an investor in Chinese technology firms also provides an insider’s take on the dawn of AI.

How to get empowered, not overpowered, by AI – Max Tegmark

MIT professor Max Tegmark subscribes to the latter school of thought, but he cautions that AI developers must imbue their flourishing technology with the right values and safeguards to ensure that AI will act in the interest of humanity as a whole.

Can we build AI without losing control over it? – Sam Harris

In this Ted Talk, Neuroscientist Sam Harris speaks to the dichotomy of our enthusiasm quest toward artificial superintelligence while we knowingly ignore the perils that await us at our desired destination. It is a frightening yet intriguing conversation about where we are going with AI.

What happens when we take humans out of work? – Tomer Garzberg

AI will take our jobs—and that is a good thing, argues Tomer Garzberg. He tells how intelligent robots are already supplanting people, freeing us to imagine new roles for ourselves, and also surveys endeavors that are likely to remain human for some time to come.

 

How we’ll earn money in a future without jobs – Martin Ford

Futurist Martin Ford says intelligent machines will replace humans throughout the workforce, causing widespread unemployment and rattling the economy.

The incredible inventions of intuitive AI – Maurice Conti

What do you get when you give a design tool a digital nervous system? Computers that improve our ability to think and imagine, and robotic systems that come up with radical new designs for bridges, cars, drones and much more — all by themselves. Take a look of the Augmented Age with futurist Maurice Conti and preview a time when robots and humans will work side-by-side to accomplish things neither could do alone.

 

How AI can enhance our memory, work and social lives – Tom Gruber

Tom Gruber is the co-creator of Siri, so he knows what he’s talking about. He takes a more positive view of the advances in AI and how it can help us enhance the way we live our day-to-day lives. He shares his vision for a future where AI helps us achieve superhuman performance in perception, creativity, and cognitive function.

AI’s Impact On The Job Market: What Kind Of Jobs Are Getting Automated Right Now?

AI began as a pursuit of human intelligence. The term itself is a representation of it. 

Although most of that quest has drifted into one sub-area of AI, Machine Intelligence. To broadly state, most of the current machine learning projects have limited domain (individually) with a large amount of data. However, they execute relatively simple tasks and are not very creative. 

Effectively, we have ended up creating machines that can solve some problems better than us, but they are nowhere close to us when it comes to “intelligence.” These AI-enabled machines are doing tasks that were being done before but in a more efficient manner. 

However, this doesn’t mean that machines aren’t taking away our jobs by these kinds of AIs. To start off with, it will mostly be routine jobs that are going to be replaced. In the near future, it won’t be the entire workforce, but surely 50-80% of jobs in multiple domains are capable of being automated. This is a significant number to shake up the entire workforce. 

When we think of routine jobs, there is a prevalent misconception that only blue-collared jobs like assembly lines or physical jobs that don’t require a high level of dexterity (like fruit picking and dishwashing) will get automated. However, it is likely that routine white-collar jobs are going to be automated.

Think of it, to replace white-collar workers, all you need is a piece of software but to replace a blue-collar worker; you need robotics, mechanical excellence, ability to deal with dexterity and the potential to navigate unknown environments. 

Some of the white-collar jobs like back offices where basic search and management of data takes place can already be replaced by advanced ML tools. Tasks that don’t require strategic decision makings like dealing with new employee orientation, simple computer programming, and copy-pasting stuff, can be done by AI.

In the next 5 years, the number of jobs lost, both white and blue-collar will be modest. However, it will increase exponentially after that when the technology improves and adoption increases. 

CIO vs CTO: A Look At How These Roles Contrast And Complement Each Other

 

The line between business and technology is increasingly becoming blurred. Digital Innovation and adoption has left no other choice. In this evolving landscape, the roles of a Chief Information Officer (CIO) of a company and a Chief Technology Officer (CTO) have changed too. 

We need to take a closer look at how this new environment has given more power to these two highly sought after profiles. 

CTOs Have A Bigger Role To Play Than Ever Before

If the proposition that “Technology is King” is true for an organization, then it is safe to say that a CTO is the Kingmaker. The fact that this position was a fringe one about 10 years back is a testament to the fact that businesses today have changed how they work completely. The role of CTO has become such a key for an organization that even the White House appointed its very first CTO, Aneesh Chopra in 2009.

In most companies, a CTO is running an engineering team while also keeping the customer, end product and revenue growth in focus. Apart from that, they have a key role in a technical evangelist to play. 

CIOs Are No Longer At The Backseat

The roles of the Chief Information Officer and Chief Innovation Officer have merged. Traditionally speaking, the role of a CIO would be to compile and interpret data on corporate technology. Once the gathered data becomes relevant information, the CIO would implement procedures on strategic planning, operational efficiency and more. If we have to draw a strawman, a CIO would be a person who takes a backseat when it comes to running the business.

However, that’s not the case now. Catalyzed by the fact that businesses need to grow and adapt at a faster rate than ever before, a Chief Information Officer has engulfed the responsibilities of the internal role of a Chief Innovation Officer. Now, not only do CIOs have to change and evolve their own skills/ideas at every turn, but they also have to make sure their organization is evolving too. 

The contrast between the roles of CIO and CTO

One of the biggest differences between these two profiles is that a CIO generally plays a more introspective role within the company whereas a CTO would look externally. When a CIO will be looking at the day-to-day operations, a CTO would be looking at the customer’s needs. In larger organizations, it would be safe to say that the CIO manages IT infrastructure and the CTO manages the business’s technology architecture. However, when resources are unavailable, a CTO generally would take over the responsibilities of a CIO. 

Coming to the skill requirements, the technical knowledge of the CTO should be off the charts in multiple domains. If you are building one of the world’s best tech companies, you should ideally have one of the world’s best CTOs. However, a CIO doesn’t need to be too tech-savvy. CIOs need to possess organizational skills, managerial skills. It is often the case that CIOs are chosen to be employees with experience within the company while it is common to hire a CTO externally.

Pride, Bliss, Wisdom – Experienced in a Day!

 

Last week was quite a productive week for me where I  chanced upon meeting personalities ranging from CXOs, Managers, Founders, and Directors from the top startups and network with them – understand the problems they are solving and the attitude they have towards running the whole mighty scene of startups in India. If I had to name my week, it would be called “The Networking Week”, seems a little funny but that’s what it is! How did it all start?

With a vision to explore the events happening around the city, I came across Product leadership Forum which was a 2-day event with a great lineup of speakers and panelists. This caught my eye, attention, mind and every possible nerve of it – with that high enthusiasm, I went ahead to attend the event on 23rd August. 

“Fall in love with the problem, not with the solution, 

Don’t jump to the solution first, understand the problem first.”

On hearing this from the first keynote speaker Sundar Balasubramanian, Director Product Management Intuit, I was enlightened! This was stated as a Mantra (Key) to Success in any field of work. 

Followed by this was another great panel of Founders & CEOs discussing the new role of product leader in the innovation space. Now, this was an interesting topic for me as we at Purple Quarter interact with leaders across the technology and innovation space day-in and day-out. I was sure the insights from these founders shall be a peace of knowledge I can take back and share with the team! This panel consisted of Founders of Techstars, Rentomojo, Housejoy, NoBroker and Rakuten India while it was moderated by Sai Satish, Director Product Management in Oracle. 

The one thing common in each of the Founder’s perception was the use of innovation in technology – and the vital role technology plays in every sphere of our lives today! Isn’t that true? From booking a cab to reach the office to ordering our food or booking our weekend gateway or a movie- it is all powered by technology and our lives are incomplete without it! The emphasis of the whole conversation of this panel laid on the need to think outside the box to bring new innovation to the table – be customer-centric – and try to actually solve a customers problem to acquire and retain them. 

Purple Quarter

After gaining all this wisdom from this panel, another moment that left me awestruck was the Q&A round where the audience had valid questions and the panel was keen enough to answer them with clarity and patience. Oh No! That wasn’t “the awestruck moment”, it was when Bala Girisaballa answered my question with the zeal, precision, and pointers I was looking for! 

Now coming to why I called my week “The Networking Week”, the answer to that lies in the quick yet blissful conversation I had with Akhil Gupta, Founder of NoBroker. It was not about me, it was not about him, it was about the pride I felt with the recognition he gave to our organization Purple Quarter. The work I have been doing along with the marketing team in Purple Quarter has now been the responsible factor behind such dignitaries recognizing the brand as India’s leading CTO search firm. 

 By – Mayank Vyas

Content Strategist &Writer, Purple Quarter

How to find and hire the right CTO for your startup?

Hire a CTO

It wasn’t that long back when top-rated companies were vying with each other to hire the best CEO. Fast forward to the present economy where technology dominates, and one in which the CTO has appeared center stage. Finding the right talent can be nothing short of an unending odyssey in a country like India. The demand for a CTO has only just become a recent phenomenon in the job market in India. And when there does seem to be an avenue of opportunity, companies and recruiting bodies hit a dead end when it comes to finding the right talent. Companies often face limitations when it comes to a dearth of experience and leadership capabilities.

Getting matched with the ideal CTO is as tough as discovering a rare pearl in an oyster. But, if you do, then there’s nothing that can hinder your Firm from shuttling towards success. There are several reasons for this of course. Thought leaders and industry experts from across the globe agree on the fact that CTOs are the connecting factor between Firms and their customers. As C-level executives in the upper echelon of a company’s organization, on par with the Chief Commercial Officer, Chief Operating Officer, and Chief Financial Officer, the CTO is majorly responsible for spearheading a company’s innovation and technology growth story.

Every company needs a strong technological push, and for that, we need good CTOs

The CTO is primarily responsible for transforming big ideas into sound tech strategies which can be easily consumed by consumers. As the years’ progress and new and innovative technologies hit the market, so too does the role of the CTO. It’s a symbiotic relationship and needs to evolve accordingly. In today’s digital age, CTOs aren’t just tech administrators who handle the backend of a business’s functioning but are tech gurus on the front lines, envisioning and spearheading newer and improved technological processes to help write a company’s success story.

4 Steps to Hire the Best CTO

Finding the right CTO need not be a herculean task in today’s job market. We’ve listed out a 4 step approach to get the job done.

  1. Be specific and chart the company’s roadmap

Be unabashed about the role that the CTO will have to fulfill in your firm. If it’s going to be a demanding role, then you need to be honest and say so. Define the current position of your organization, where it needs to be, and why being a part of that journey can be a fulfilling experience professionally. Have a candid conversation about this when you interview potential candidates, or you can even highlight these facts in the job description. Trust us, this is the ideal hook to attract the right kind of candidates. Some of the key attributes that make for an ideal CTO is leadership capabilities. They will be managing the tech department of your company. To be able to fulfill this role, they should ideally have prior experience in a similar capacity. They need to be quick thinkers who can think on their feet and tackle situations with the best strategies. They must be able to imbibe and help actualize the vision of the company. They need to be chameleons who can adapt their role and the company’s policies, vision, and business models with new changes in innovation. Efficient use of technological resources, implementing new infrastructures to scale a company’s profit margins; these are some of the winning qualities that make for the best CTO.

  1. Sell the role

Finding a CTO is like unearthing a gem. You will face stiff competition from several companies vying for the same candidate. What you need to remember in this scenario, is to avoid selling yourself short. Work your salesman skills and wow the candidate into choosing your Firm. During the interview process list out the company’s USPs. Talk about the different opportunities and benefits that come with the job. The more perks are the better! Discuss key points like equity distribution and autonomy. Talk about all these factors and stress on what makes your company better than the rest.

3.   Cultural Fit

Being the right cultural fit is one of the most important factors that need to be clocked in when you’re looking for a CTO. Having the right technical skills is essential, but so does being able to adapt to the new company culture. This is especially important when you are recruiting a person from another country. In these matters, different factors come into play, like issues related to dialect, having the right knowledge databank to match and help expand a company’s profit margins and visibility in another country. For example, the technological requirements that a CTO needs to have in a developing economy like India may not be the same as the requirements of a company in a developed country like America. Company cultures are different, and a CTO needs to be able to fit within the same. 

    4. Map the key stakeholders-The Intersection between employers and potential employees

If you are aiming at global expansion, looking for global partnerships, M&A, and looking to scale your profits big time, then hiring the right talent will be the best decision you ever make. A key stakeholder will look for a person who is a tech genius, but who is also well versed in the business side of things. It’s also important to bear in mind during the recruitment process whether a candidate is on the same wavelength as the key stakeholders. It’s an intersection between employers and potential employees. Key stakeholders should partner the right candidates with the right role. It should be a seamless fit like a brick in the wall. You know you’ve got the hiring process done right if you manage to match the right talent to the key stakeholders’ expectations.

Finding a correct tech visionary or CTO for a startup is a Sisyphean task. Many Startups and recruiting firms are trying to fill this void by simply sending leadership profiles to the stakeholders.

But, Purple Quarter is a leading CTO search firm that focuses on Tech Head hires for Tech Product Companies across India and SE Asia. It just because of a unique concept of talent mapping and understanding behind getting close to the right people in the industry to identify their passion, motivation, mobility, compensation and Behavioural metrics.

After facilitating InMobi with it’s current CTO, Mr. Ravi Krishnaswamy, Purple Quarter went ahead and empowered companies like PharmEasy, UrbanClap, Walmart, Swiggy and Rivigo with Tech Visionaries that take the leadership of growing their business along with bringing a revolution in the technology.

Understanding The CEO-CTO Relationship

CEO - CTO Relationship

A Chief Executive Officer (CEO) is the most senior officer who oversees the overall operations of an organization to ensure the successful management of the business. A CTO (Chief Technology Officer), on the other hand, is a senior executive whose role is to focus on an organization’s technical mission and technological requirements to help it grow externally.

In simple words, a CEO leads an organization, whereas a CTO leads the organization’s technical staff. Since both CEO and CTO bear a lot of responsibilities, the relationship between CEO and CTO is something clients and employees look forward to in any organization.

The success of an organization depends not only on the healthy relationship between the subordinates but also on the rapport that top-level executives share among themselves. The CEO and CTO of an organization are equally responsible for taking their products and services to the next level; thus, they should work in partnership to take the organization to new levels of success in the long run. Therefore, if you want your business to prosper, you should hire a CTO who understands your business thoroughly.

Importance of hiring the right CTO

In recent times, the position of CTO is the most in-demand, and also the most difficult position to fill. A perfect CEO-CTO relationship benefits an organization in the following ways :

* The culture and structure of the organization changes for better;

* All the departments start getting fruitful results;

* Customers get satisfied with the quality of products and services delivered by the organization

How to foster a healthy CEO-CTO relationship?

Understand each other’s role: The CEO and the CTO of a company should be aware of each other’s strengths. Both should genuinely respect each other’s roles, responsibilities, and capabilities.

Foster the spirit of cooperation: A CEO should understand the objectives that the CTO has to accomplish. Similarly, a CTO should be aware of the CEO’s goals, and the hindrances they need to overcome together. CTOs should not limit themselves to the technical aspects of a company, but also add value to marketing, finance, and all other aspects that the CEO handles. For example, the CEO is generally not aware of when and how to indulge with new clients, but the CTO should know how to handle this situation adeptly.

Encourage a smooth flow of communication: A CEO and his CTO should have each other’s backs. There should be no room for any communication gap between them; and even if there are any, an efficient CTO is expected to fill the gap.

Company leaders have to deal with lots of complexities for growth; that’s when a CTO and CEO should work collectively to gain multiple benefits. To avoid a panic situation, CEOs should hire CTOs who understand how the organization functions, and let the relationship between the CEO and CTO flourish. If a CTO or CEO unknowingly messes up, instead of blaming each other, they should work alongside, and take the bullet for each other when any one of them messes up.

A CTO can become one of the biggest assets of an organization, only if he/she works collaboratively with the CEO. To this end, the CEO should value the CTO’s contribution and provide them with ample opportunities and freedom to grow intellectually without second-guessing them; similarly, the CTO should work closely with the CEO to steer the organization in the right direction.

Why CTOs Role Becoming Equally Important than CEOs for Growth Stage Startup?

The fast-paced digital environment has been playing a major role in transforming every company into a technology company, and start-ups are no exception. Today’s innovation-driven businesses are largely dependent on technology for manufacturing, delivering, and promoting their digitally-enabled business offerings competently. In startups CTOs (chief technology officer) Playing a vital role, taking startups to the next level.

With technological developments happening in multiple departments of an organization, 21st-century businesses are no longer reliant on third-party integrations as they hire an internal IT team to streamline their business processes and gain a competitive advantage.

Considering the current state of affairs, we can infer that businesses that disregard innovative advancements are likely to lose their identity in pretty short space of time; this is why corporate houses, as well as startups, prefer hiring a CTO (Chief Technology Officer) to drive the technological success of their business effectively.

Finding the right CTO can take a startup to the next level of success

A lot of startup businesses such as Airbnb, OYO, Uber, SnapChat, Spotify, etc., are already making headlines every day; thanks to the CTOs who have been operating these startups so productively.

CTO forms a Crucial Part in Business Growth Strategies for Startups

Before we go any further, let’s briefly elucidate the role of a CTO throughout a startup lifecycle. Since modern businesses are technology-driven, every company needs a CTO to stay ahead of the pack. A CTO is the top-level technology executive position within an organization. However, the role of a CTO goes beyond technical skills or managing technical teams.

A perfect CTO is a combination of strategic and technical skills. He or she should be able to explicate strategic roadmaps to the CEO as well as other stakeholders of the company. At the same time, competent CTOs take all possible measures to foster a healthy and rewarding work culture along with a cheerful and productive team.

What is the role of CTOs throughout the startup lifecycle

ctos role in startups is important as CEOs role

The above chart demonstrates the intricate roles and diverse functions of CTOs in a startup company. The role of a CTO demands huge responsibilities, especially in a startup.

Startup CTOs should be prepared to get their hands dirty during the early stages of a startup business. They should be eager to take up different roles and responsibilities for filling the gaps in the team. Nevertheless, as the startup business grows, the role of the CTOs often shifts from technology to management.

Chalks out Future Roadmap: The CTO analyses the startup’s goals and then chalks out practical steps to achieve those goals. In simple words, a startup CTO’s key objective is to translate business goals into projects. From finance management, team management, and user experience to development, operations, and employee retention, the CTOs need to take charge of several departments to shine a light on a startup’s future.

A Multitasker: CTOs in a startup should have the ability to understand the business and make pragmatic choices. As the CTO of a startup consisting of a small team of about 5-10 members, the CTO will probably be the only tech expert in the company. He/she leads the engineering team and collaborate with vendors while focusing on the end product, customer satisfaction, and boosting ROI. Besides having their finger on the technological pulse, a CTO should also be aware of the emerging technology and business trends. In such a setting, a CTO’s role in a startup becomes equal or as important as that of a CEO.

It is not easy to define CTOs’ role as the job title demands different skill sets in different companies. Purple Quarter has been helping a lot of fledgling startups and established corporate houses in finding the right CTOs who are not only technical wizards but also thought leaders, storytellers, customer champions, and visionaries.

From CTO to Chief Transformative Officer[CTO]

CTO to Chief Transformative officer

 

The Indian banking sector is one of the fastest adopters of technology today. Quite naturally, CTOs became a necessity to hire for banks long ago. In alliance with the express tech-driven changes, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) from 2017 started urging the banks to appoint qualified chiefs to head the critical finance and technology functions.

CTOs in the banking sector is now considered as chief transformation officers, and this shift requires them to stretch beyond the tasks of monitoring technology performance, bringing reliability, and managing a lean operation. They are now donning multiple hats – upkeep Risk Governance and moving away from a support role to Strategic Partnership role and playing a pivotal role in incubating new business lines and reinventing/innovating business processes for the banks.

In short, the CTO has moved to the top of the table in the process of reinvention for the banking sector.

Unforeseen challenges

In 2018 alone, $112 billion was pumped into innovative companies that pursue technological innovation in the banking sector. The BFSI sector revolves around building more customer-centric products. The CTO thus faces several challenges while digitally transforming the banks and making them more customer-centric.

Below are the two critical challenges that every CTO must tackle.

Regulatory: – Navigating through regulations in terms of data and government policies in Indian & South East Asian markets can be a bit blurry and challenging because these policies and regulations are not well defined and are still at their nascence stage. It is important for a CTO to create a balance between driving disruption by offering more data-centric customized products while following regulatory compliances.

Digital Transformation: – Banks have been operating and offering products under a Set guideline for years. The focus is shifting to Class banking, even in mass banking, with the introduction of value-added and customized products. The focus has changed from running a manpower heavy operation to a tech-heavy operation. The branches are run on the concept of 24X7 working, made possible through the use of telebanking, ATMs, internet banking, mobile banking, and e-banking. It is challenging for a CTO to strike the balance and drive the transformation, without disrupting the daily cycle.

It’s also the right time for the CTOs to focus on industry collaborations at a time when nimble fintechs are disrupting the market.

Fintech companies are often at the forefront of creating new products, interfaces, and delivery channels. They are leveraging all available technologies to reach out to customers which were inaccessible earlier. I think it’s important that CTOs who have been in the industry for long should keep their eyes out for the innovators and haunch early strategic partnership to leverage their strengths in taking their organization forward.