Largest digital transformation awards programme in Africa is an opportunity
Despite some mixed economic signals and various business challenges around the world, it is more than ever imperative that company executives approach business with a growth mindset.
The lessons learnt from the recent Covid-19 pandemic are more than ever true: Technology and digital transformation are needed to help organisations to improve operational excellence, increase organisational agility, and to better connect with customers and clients.
Over the years, research has confirmed that operational excellence is a key attribute of leading companies in any industry. Organisations are therefore becoming more reliant on information technology to ensure operational excellence and the maximum returns on their investment.
As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, digital transformation has accelerated rapidly over the past year or two – according to some experts, we have gained as much as seven years with regard to digital capabilities. For many businesses digital transformation has become a core component in their efforts towards innovation, growth and business value. During the pandemic the most customer-orientated businesses accelerated their move to the digital world to ensure innovative customer experiences.
Some of the enabling technologies that have been employed by organisations in digital transformation programs are cloud computing, the Internet of Things (IoT), the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), Big Data, Analytics, Mobility, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning, Blockchain and Robotics.
In very practical terms, the digital transformation of an organisation drives improved customer experience through big data analytics and Artificial Intelligence (AI); reduced costs through automation, robotics and the Internet of Things (IoT); increased productivity through automation and AI; increased revenues; improved agility and flexibility; shorter innovation cycles; better data driven business decisions and talent attraction.
There is no doubt that going forward, the focus of organisations should firmly remain on digital transformation. This approach is increasingly being known by a host of titles such as “Smart Manufacturing” in the US, “Industry 4.0” in Germany, and “Made in China 2025”.
In an industry environment that is increasingly interconnected, digital transformation tools that enable industries to work faster, more efficiently and intuitively are what is going to support sustainability in the markets and encourage innovation.
Forrester’s US Technology Market Outlook of 2022 report shows an increase in information technology spending of 8.1% on average since the start of the pandemic. Further, Forrester’s recent budget pulse survey found that 67% of information technology professionals predict increasing technology budgets over the coming months.
But increasing spending at a time of looming geopolitical friction, widespread inflation, and chronic supply chain constraints means businesses will have to design innovative strategies and implement it to remain successful. In these challenging times technology executives will have to provide the necessary data and information to navigate these difficult headwinds without sacrificing growth and to ensure that increased technology spending is put to productive use.
Therefore, it is mostly the information technology leaders who must ensure the alignment of technology architectures and build the information technology roadmap to ensure a successful digital transformation. To remain competitive in the competitive global village we need these information technology leaders to drive digital transformation and innovation in Africa.
One of the largest events to encourage, celebrate and reward these information technology leaders of Africa, is the annual dx100 Awards program that have been running for more than 10 years and have recognised more than 11 000 innovative large and small organisations and Chief Information Technology Officers in Africa.
The annual dx100 Awards program celebrates the 100 organisations (and the people within them) that are using information technology in innovative ways to deliver business value, whether by creating competitive advantage, optimising business processes, enabling growth, improving relationships with customers, or digitally transforming the business.
Dx stands for digital transformation and the awards seek to shine a light on organisations and individuals who contribute positively to digital transformation.
Kelly Bentley, dx⁵ CEO, said the dx100 Awards is an indispensable event for business and information technology leaders across the African continent.
“Raising awareness about the significant impact of digital transformation and the holistic C-Suite ownership required for its success, is critical to sustainable business growth.”
A dx100 award is an acknowledged mark of enterprise excellence through digital transformation, enhancing an organisation’s reputation as a leading innovator.
It provides tangible recognition of leadership, innovation and engagement within innovative companies. Executives from the winning companies will be recognised among their peers and colleagues at the dx100 Awards Ceremony in Diani, Kenya. The dx100 Awards ceremony comes at the tail end of the dx100 Symposium and Awards, a three-day event from November 23 to 25 that is the most powerful pan-African gathering of C-Suite executives. Some of the organisations with the most innovative projects are often invited to present at the dx100 Awards Symposium and Awards Ceremony.
The theme for this year’s awards is “Catalysing C-Suite Engagement in Digital Transformation.” Leadership, innovation, and business strategy conversations will thus dominate the event.
South African companies, as well as top C-Suite business and information technology leaders in Africa that have progressed along the important road of digital transformation and initiated successful digital transformation projects that unlocked measurable business value, would do South Africa proud by taking part in this major African event.
There is no nomination fee, and a potential awardee can nominate themselves, their customer, organisation, or a partner for any of the many rewards, such as Chief Information Officer (CIO) of the Year, Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) of the Year, CxO Digital Influencer of the Year, Infrastructure Award, Green Edge Award, Industry Awards and many more. More detail is available at https://cioafrica.co/dx100-awards-nomination/#application-instructions.
If South Africa wants to succeed in the very competitive world of the fourth industrial revolution, we will have to promote the innovative use of digital technologies and digital transformation to unlock the true potential of organisations, bringing speed, agility and scalability into organisational operations. For business leaders, the next few years will be about positioning their organisation in a disruptive world through digital transformation. Organisations will need a clear roadmap for the implementation of new technologies or “smart” digital transformation to help them survive and prosper, whatever social and economic challenges they may face in the future.
The dx100 Awards program is an ideal opportunity to measure South African companies, strategies and executives against the best of Africa.
Professor Louis CH Fourie is an Extraordinary Professor at the University of the Western Cape.