With the threat of a recession looming, cost pressures increasing, and the deadline to move off SAP ECC swiftly approaching, SAP customers have a lot to consider as they plan for the year ahead.

Here are some of the trends we expect to play out as the year goes on, specifically for SAP customers.

1. SAP will hold firm on expiration of ECC support

Though customers may be looking for an extension, we expect SAP will not extend the expiration of mainstream maintenance for SAP Business Suite 7 core applications beyond 2027. SAP has already extended the deadline once — in 2020, it extended support from 2025 to the end of 2027. We also expect SAP to position alternative support options, via its extended maintenance option, for an additional 2% on your maintenance base or customer-specific maintenance through 2030.

Customers will likely continue to believe that SAP has not presented a strong enough business case to upgrade to S/4HANA. However, it will be difficult to argue that SAP hasn’t provided ample opportunity to plan and execute an upgrade or understand the financial implications for delaying the move to S/4HANA. Any extension on SAP’s part would fly in the face of its strategic objectives. Customers need to consider this deadline as final and start preparing now if they haven’t already.

2. SAP will aggressively position RISE

SAP’s agenda goes beyond migrating SAP ECC clients to S/4HANA. Migrating customers to RISE, its cloud offering on a subscription-based model, is of utmost importance. SAP RISE is the cornerstone of SAP’s long-term financial plan to secure increased renewal revenue.

SAP’s motivations and commitment to this offering were made clear back when its predictable revenue, a major factor in overall company valuation, was in the low 70s while other pure-play SaaS providers were in the low to high 90s. In its 2022 year-end earnings call, SAP boasted predictable revenue of 79% with aspirations to reach 85% by 2025. The stakes for SAP are high and customers should anticipate that SAP’s sales and negotiation tactics will reflect that and will include:

A highly coordinated approach/advocacy for RISE adoption throughout the partner network, including systems integrators (SI) and hyperscaler partnersPositioning the long-term vision, product development, and innovation to be focused on RISE vs. S/4HANA On-PremiseLeveraging executive-level client relationships to influence and offset potential deficiencies in RISE identified by client evaluation teamsOffering highly unfavorable pricing and commercial terms related to S/4HANA On-Premise license arrangements vs. historical SAP practices

Customers should anticipate the pressure SAP will apply for RISE adoption and prepare their organization to proactively manage SAP executive-level relationships. It’s also advisable for customers to conduct a thorough review of their SAP agreements and commercial protections before assuming a false sense of security with respect to their purchase or negotiation position for additional on-premises licenses.

3. Customer’s will struggle with RISE evaluations

Many clients have yet to come to the realization that the evaluation of RISE is more akin to evaluating a managed services offering than a pure-play SaaS solution. Companies also are at risk of underestimating the complexities and implications related to their existing operations and adjacent partner relationships. For example:

It’s in SAP’s nature to sell software, not a managed service offering. At worst, they will avoid the conversation completely, and at best, they will try to stay at a high-level on critical topics like environment sizing, roles and responsibilities, and modifications to service-level commitments.Most SAP ECC and S/4HANA customers have third-party support relationships, either in the form of traditional on-premises infrastructure support, cloud managed services, and/or application maintenance and support. An assessment of the current and future state of these relationships should be conducted in parallel with the RISE evaluation.Although SAP provides the flexibility to allow a customer to select its hyperscaler of choice through the RISE model, many customers already have or are contemplating sizable commitments to AWS, GCP, and Microsoft Azure. These companies have enjoyed sizable investments from hyperscalers in exchange for workloads. The question customers must answer is whether it’s in their interest to sever their hyperscaler relationship through an SAP RISE offering.

Customers who anticipate the complexity of their RISE evaluation and proactively develop an integrated sourcing and evaluation strategy will be positioned to make more informed and effective decisions.

4. SAP will target midmarket companies

We expect SAP to put significant energy into capturing more of the midmarket as these companies are more likely to adopt a single, vertically integrated solution like RISE. Unlike most enterprise-level companies, midmarket companies are nimbler and faster in their decision-making process and more likely to seek a single partner versus a multi-partner strategy. These companies are also more likely to implement SAP RISE faster than an SAP enterprise customer. All these factors present a meaningful opportunity to SAP. Because of this, these midmarket companies should be asking:

Is SAP presenting a commercial model that allows our organization to scale in a financially responsible manner?Is SAP presenting prospective implementation partners capable of successfully delivering the project?Is SAP and its implementation partners presenting a realistic view of the program scope, approach, and requirements for success?

5. Consulting firms will invest in ‘Phase 0’ initiatives      

Although it’s too early to give up on growth in 2023, we anticipate that the consulting and system implementation community will emphasize growth for 2024 and beyond via continued positioning of Phase 0 initiatives. We view this as an opportunity for companies that are not currently undertaking an SAP ECC to S/4HANA migration and do not expect the funding to commence their journey to S/4HANA until late 2023 or early 2024.

That said, every opportunity comes with a price and potential downstream risks that companies would be advised to consider as they undertake Phase 0 initiatives. We recommend keeping the following questions in mind:

Is the Phase 0 consulting firm a likely candidate for the implementation phase? If so, is your strategy to sole source? Does your timeline allow for an SI RFP process? Is there a potential for your organization to lose negotiation leverage by walking into an unplanned sole-source situation?What is the scope of the Phase 0? Is the scope aligned solely to the consulting partners methodology, or does it consider the requirements your company has to actually approve to proceed to the next phase of the project?Does your plan, board of directors, or regulatory commission call for an independent review and validation of the business case and strategy? If so, what is your plan to obtain such an independent perspective?Does the scope of your Phase 0 include the development of an integrated sourcing strategy designed to enable the evaluation, selection, and negotiation of multiple workstreams (including SAP software, implementation services, hyperscaler services, cloud managed services, and application maintenance and support)?

Before customers take advantage of the “time” to plan in 2023 and the investments that both SAP and consulting firms are willing to make in Phase 0 initiatives, they should think through the end-to-end decision process and their requirements rather than default to the approach and strategies proposed by any partner.

6. SAP customers will continue to migrate to the cloud

We anticipate that customers committed to staying on SAP ECC or planning to migrate to SAP S/4HANA while maintaining their perpetual licenses will continue to aggressively move to the cloud. Some companies will do so proactively, while others may be compelled to do so as a result of changes in the strategy of their existing managed services providers (e.g., Kyndryl and Dell Virtustream).

In addition, many companies will be making this migration in a context that goes beyond their SAP environment, including other application workloads and non-SAP transformational initiatives with AWS, Google, and Microsoft. As companies consider their overall cloud strategy, they should consider the following:

Evaluate SAP RISE in conjunction with their hyperscaler relationship and cloud managed services relationships to allow for effective decision-making and manufacturing of leverage.Take inventory of existing application and cloud migration roadmaps and future growth projections, as our experience shows that many organizations are blowing through their spend commitments very early in their agreement term.Assess their existing hyperscaler agreements, including spend commitments and incentives to determine whether they are market competitive and will scale commercially to account for future growth.

7. Customers will reimagine managed services relationships

In conjunction with the cloud migration, we believe companies will continue to reimagine their operating models and existing managed services relationships. The introduction of SAP RISE, the market disruption caused by the hyperscalers, and the continued pressure to reduce operating cost and improve operating scale will serve as the primary drivers in this area. As organizations reimagine their future state, they will be compelled to ask and answer the following:

Would it be more efficient to build a cloud center of excellence (COE) internally or proceed with a managed services model?Should I proceed with my incumbent on-premises managed service provider or select a new cloud managed service provider?Can I leverage my system integrator and SAP to provide a comprehensive managed services solution, such as Accenture’s SOAR offering, or proceed with a multi-vendor approach?Can I leverage the selected S/4HANA systems integrator or my existing SAP ECC application management services (AMS) provider to provide application maintenance and support?

Although SAP may serve as a major consideration with respect to the overall strategy, many organizations have managed services relationships that expand well beyond the boundaries of SAP, including security services, non-SAP AMS, help desk services, field services, etc. Renegotiating these relationships and assuming a partial termination of existing services will also need to be considered as part of an overall strategic sourcing plan.

Many companies are well on their way to tackling these decisions. But the vast majority of SAP’s install base is just starting this journey and are likely to be leveraging the majority of 2023 to develop and execute a strategy to answer these questions.

ERP Systems, SAP

Movers & Shakers is where you can keep up with new CIO appointments and gain valuable insight into the job market and CIO hiring trends. As every company becomes a technology company, CEOs and corporate boards are seeking multi-dimensional CIOs with superior skills in technology, communications, business strategy and digital innovation. The role is more challenging than ever before but even more exciting and rewarding! If you have CIO job news to share, please email me!

Tyson Foods promotes two to CTO and CIO positions

Danyel Bischof-Forsyth, CTO, Tyson Foods

Tyson Foods

Doug Kulka, CIO, Tyson Foods

Tyson Foods

Tyson Foods, one of the world’s largest food companies, announced the appointments of CTO Danyel Bischof-Forsyth and CIO Doug Kulka. Founded in 1935, Tyson has a broad portfolio of products and brands, including Jimmy Dean, Ball Park, Sara Lee, Barber, and more. Kulka most recently served as VP of Delivery-as-a-Service IT. He first came to Tyson in 2017 from Hewlett Packard Enterprise and holds a BS degree in Finance from University of Connecticut. Bischof-Forsyth first joined Tyson in 2018 and most recently served as VP IT – Poultry, Prepared Foods, and Customer Enablement. Earlier, she had a lengthy career with Hallmark Cards. Bischof-Forsyth earned a BS degree in Computer Science and an MBA from The University of Kansas.

Southwest Airlines names Lauren Woods as CIO

Lauren Woods, CIO, Southwest Airlines

Southwest Airlines

Southwest operates in 121 airports across 11 countries. Woods first joined Southwest in 2010 and most recently held the position of Vice President. Prior to Southwest, she worked in the management consulting firm Diamond Management & Technology (now PWC). She holds a BS degree from Cornell University.

Greg Fancher joins PetSmart as CITO

Greg Fancher, CITO, PetSmart


Founded in 1987, PetSmart is a specialty pet retailer with more than 1,660 locations in North America. Fancher joins PetSmart from EXPRESS, where he served as CTO. Previously, he served as CIO at Taco Bell and held other roles at lululemon and Gap. Fancher earned a Bachelor of Arts focusing on economics from Colgate University and a Master of Science in Information Systems from San Francisco State University.

Mark Mazurkiewicz is CIO of Protective Industrial Products

Mark Mazurkiewicz, CIO, Protective Industrial Products

Protective Industrial Products

Founded in 1984 and based outside Albany, NY, PIP is a leading manufacturer and distributor of personal protective equipment. Most recently, Mazurkiewicz was CIO of Alkegen. He earned a BA in Mathematics and Computer Science from the University at Buffalo.

Keith Aulson named CIO at Malibu Boats

Keith Aulson, CIO, Malibu Boats

Malibu Boats

Malibu Boats is a designer, manufacturer, and marketer of a diverse range of recreational powerboats under a range of brands including Malibu, Axis, Cobalt, Pursuit, and more. Aulson joins Malibu Boats from Ingram Barge Co. Prior to that, he held roles at Brandt Engineering, SourceHOV, and The Turner Corporation. Aulson earned his MBA from Southern Methodist University and his BS from Texas A&M University.

Sean Moore rejoins CJ Logistics America as CIO

Sean Moore, CIO, CJ Logistics America

CJ Logistics America

CJ Logistics America provides integrated supply chain services in North America, including 80+ warehousing, transportation, and freight forwarding operations across the US, Canada, and Mexico. Moore was Senior Director of IT, Business Applications at CJ Logistics America from 2014-2017. Prior to rejoining the company as CIO, he was Digital Integration Director at RSM US in Raleigh, NC, and CIO at IMPLUS in Durham, NC. Moore has a BS in Civil Engineering and an MBA from Bradley University.

GA Telesis appoints Darryl Maraj as its first global CIO

Darryl Maraj, CIO, GA Telesis

GA Telesis

GA Telesis is a provider of integrated services in the commercial aviation industry. Maraj has been with GA Telesis for 10 years, most recently serving as CTO, Digital Innovation Group. He holds a BS in Marketing and an MBA in Finance from Florida Atlantic University.

Seneca Gaming names Les Leonard CIO

Les Leonard, CIO, Seneca Gaming

Seneca Gaming

Seneca Gaming Corporation (SGC) is a wholly owned, tribally chartered corporation of the Seneca Nation of Indians (Nation) which operates all of the Nation’s Class III gaming operations in Western New York. Leonard most recently served as Seneca Gaming Corporation’s Vice President of IT Business Solutions since 2019. He held previous roles at Resorts World Las Vegas, Boyd Gaming Corporation, and Genesis Health Ventures. He is a U.S. Army Veteran and was a Communications Officer in the White House Communications Agency. Leonard earned a Bachelor in Technology degree from the University of Maryland Global Campus.

Peter Weis appointed CIO of ITS Logistics

Peter Weis, CIO, ITS Logistics

ITS Logistics

ITS Logistics offers a suite of network transportation solutions across North America as well as omnichannel distribution and fulfillment services. Before joining ITS, Weis served as Global CIO for Matson Navigation and taught an IT leadership course at the University of California, Berkeley for five years. Weis earned a Bachelor’s degree from University of California, Berkeley, and an MBA from University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School of Business.

Sumaria Systems Names Alex Wong as CIO

Alex Wong, CIO, Sumaria Systems

Sumaria Systems

Sumaria Systems, headquartered in Peabody, MA, provides professional, technology, engineering, and management services to the US Government. Before joining Sumaria, Alex held IT leadership positions at several fortune 500 firms. Wong has a Master of Science degree in computer engineering from Stanford University and a Bachelor of Science degree in computer engineering from the University of Texas at Austin.

Jay Brodsky joins American Association for the Advancement of Science as CIO

Jay Brodsky, CIO, AAAS


AAAS has individual members in more than 91 countries around the globe and is a multidisciplinary scientific society and a leading publisher of cutting-edge research. Prior to AAAS, Brodsky held roles at American Geophysical Union, Thompson Media Group, and Atlantic Media Company. He holds a degree in computer science engineering from the University of Pennsylvania, an MBA from the Kellogg School at Northwestern University, and a masters in cybersecurity strategy from The George Washington University.

R&R Express selects Mark Ohlund as CIO

Mark Ohlund, CIO, R&R Express

R&R Express

R&R Express is a provider of logistics multi-mode transportation solutions. Ohlund was formerly the CIO of American Expediting and Armada. He earned a BS in Applied Mathematics andComputer Science and an MS in Industrial Administration, both from Carnegie Mellon University.

Sage Dental Group promotes Daniel Mirsky to CIO

Sage Dental Group provides dental care to over one million patients through its practice network, which offers general, specialty, and cosmetic dental care. Mirsky first joined Sage in 2018 and most recently served as VP of IT. Prior to that, he was VP of IT at Vision Group Holdings. Mirksy earned a degree in Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement from Palm Beach State College.

New CIO appointments, February 2023

Brown-Forman promotes Larry Combs to newly created role of CIO

Jared Price promoted to CIO at AMP

Rick Johnson named CDO at Marvin

Pritchard Industries appoints Chris Conway to CIO post

TYLin welcomes Stephen Cayea as CIO

Tarleton State University names Zach Gorman CIO

Joe Vande Kieft Named Central College’s CIO

Leaf Home hires Klarissa Marenitch as CIO

Matt Deres appointed CIO at Quest Software

Fleming Meng appointed CIO at Veritone

Michele Stanton joins HGA as CIO

Vijay Menta named CIO at Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Quorum Software appoints Jan Manning as CIO

Steve Sharkey is the new CIO at Sunland Asphalt & Construction

Lubrizol appoints Shuja Ishrat as CIO

NCB Management Services hires Leonard Yampolsky as CIO

Zoom Appoints Cindy Hoots to Board of Directors

New CIO appointments, January 2023

Centene announces Brian LeClaire as CIO

Brad Miller joins Moderna as CIO

Colgate-Palmolive promotes David Foster to CIO

Annlea Rumfola named CIO of Yellow

Chicago Public Schools appoints Norman Fleming as CIO

Sampath Narayanan announced as CIO for Panoramic Health

Schneider Electric appoints Robert Cain as CIO for North America

Vantage Data Centers names Purnima Wagle as CIO 

Eliassen Group Appoints Rob Waddell as First CIO

Quickbase Names Dalan Winbush as New CIO

Nathan Thompson assumes the role of CIO of UBC

Keith Golden joins RGP as CIO

Thanigs Muthu announced as new CIO of LBMC

Associated Banc-Corp announces Terry L. Williams as CIO

Omer Grossman named Global CIO of CyberArk

Baiju Thakkar named CIO of Supreme Lending

New CIO appointments, December 2022

Apple names Timothy Campos as new CIO

Planet Fitness announces Paul Barber as CIO

Daniel J. Barchi named as CommonSpirit Health CIO

NCR has named Patricia Watson as CIO

David Yurman announces Christian Fortucci as CIO

Open Lending appoints Thinh Nguyen as CIO

Zoetis’ CIDO, Wafaa Mamilli, expands role to lead two major markets and customer experience

Extended Stay America announces John LaPlante as CIO

Mary Beth Eckert hired as CIDO of Pacific Life

Sumit Nair joins Essential Utilities as CIO

Hussmann announces Erin Williams as CIO

Douglas Torre joins White Plains Hospital as CIO

Smoothie King announces Juan Salas as CIO

Jess Evans named CIO for Vanderbilt University

New CIO appointments, November 2022

Karen Higgins-Carter joins Gilbane Building Co. as CIDO

Atefeh (“Atti”) Riazi Named CIO of Hearst

Jim Palermo moves into CIO role at Red Hat

Etsy names Rachana Kumar Chief Technology Officer

Crowley names Erika Graziuso as CIO

Thorlabs announces Michael Cheng as new head of IT

BakerHostetler names Katherine Lowry as CIO

Sheila Carpenter appointed CIO at Everbridge

Southwell welcomes James ‘Jamey’ Pennington as new CIO

Krishna Seetharam announced as new CIO of CyrusOne

Joyce Oh joins Moffitt Cancer Center as CIO

Columbia Bank appoints Manesh Prabhu as CIO

Scott Frost named CIO at 3Pillar Global

Pam Presswood is named CIO of Valor

Brian Wesselhoff promoted to CIO at Waterstone Mortgage

Alice Fournier joins ISS as CIO for Americas Region

New CIO appointments, October 2022

Allstate names Zulfi Jeevanjee to newly created CIO position

The NFL hires Gary Brantley as new CIO

Grady Ligon joins RE/MAX as CIO

XPO promotes Jay Silberkleit to CIO

Chevron Phillips Chemical expands remit of CIO Allison Martinez 

Delta Dental of California promotes two executives into CIO and CTO roles

Ryan Olivier is named CIO of AAM (American Axle & Manufacturing)

Excela Health welcomes Vasanth Balu as CIO

Velcro Companies selects Rob Trotter as CIO

Potawatomi Hotel & Casino welcomes Garret Finocchiaro as its first CIO

Slalom hires Michelle Grover as first CTO

Sharon Pitt is named CIO at Brown University

University of Cincinnati hires Bharath Prabhakaran as CDO

Vuori Clothing names Bryan Muehlberger to be its CIO

Eduard de Vries is named CIO for Axia Women’s Health

Matt Postulka returns to Arbella Insurance as CIO

Biju Samuel joins Frazier & Deeter as CIO

Creative Testing Solutions welcomes new CIO Jeff Modell

TGen names Kevin Campbell CIO

New CIO appointments, September 2022

Walgreens Boots Alliance appoints Hsiao Wang as CIO

American Airlines Names Ganesh Jayaram CDIO

Fletcher Previn is named CIO of Cisco Systems

Mike Sullivan promoted to CIO of Post Holdings

Omni Hotels & Resorts hires Lance Kobza as CIO

Water Street Healthcare Partners appoints Deepak Batheja as CIO

Aon appoints James Platt as Chief Digital Officer and Mindy Simon as Chief Operating Officer

Conagra promotes Tracy Schaefer to CIO

Robert Curtis is named IT leader at Danbury Mission Technologies

RealTruck hires Tom Luttrell as its first CIO

Wesley Eugene has been named CIO at IDEO

Andy Rhodes named CIO at Ultimate Medical Academy

Amit Gaur joins HALO Branded Solutions as CIO

Archkey Solutions names Scott Welch to lead IT

REV Group hires Sagar Murty as CIO

Marcus Manning is named CIO of Smart Financial Credit Union

Mark Sander is the new CDIO at Azurity Pharmaceuticals

Allied Electronics & Automation Appoints Jason Taylor as CIO

Michael Early is named CTO of Francesca’s

New CIO appointments, August 2022

Michelle Greene is the new CIO at Cardinal Health

United Airlines announces technology leadership promotions

McDonald’s appoints Brian Rice as CIO

Kimberly-Clark names Zack Hicks as chief digital and technology officer

Hyatt Hotels appoints Eben Hewitt as CIO

Kohl’s promotes Siobhan McFeeney to CTO

Denise Fleming is named CIO of Becton Dickinson

Bobby Aflatooni joins Dollar Tree as CIO

Patty Patria is named CIO of Babson College

Sevita hires Patrick Piccininno to be its CIO

Sharay Erkine is named CIO of Atlanta Community Food Bank

Cranial Technologies names Pete Foster CIO

Ryan Specialty hires Bradley Bodell as CIO

Dwain Wilcox joins J.M. Huber as CIO

Amalgamated Family of Companies announces Sanjay Chojar as CIO

Xerxes Gazder appointed as CIO of AAON

Atlanta Hawks and State Farm Arena announce Chief Innovation and Technology Officer Kimberly Rometo

Steve Klohn is named CIO of Dave & Buster’s

Julie Nash promoted to CIO at Arlo Technologies

Tom Sweet is named CIO of Industrial Refrigeration Pros

Christian Eidt joins Davis-Standard as CIO

Big Brothers Big Sisters of America selects Travis Gibson to be CTO

The Federal Communications Commission names Allen Hill as CIO

Owens & Minor elects Carissa Rollins to its board of directors

New CIO appointments, July 2022

Neeru Arora named CIO and CDO for Volkswagen Group of America

Monica Caldas will become CIO of Liberty Mutual

Deere promotes CIO Raj Kalathur to CFO, appoints Ganesh Jayaram as new CIO

Ingersoll Rand Names Kathryn Freytag Chief Information Officer

eXp World Holdings names Shoeb Ansari as CIO

FM Global promotes Todd Mazza to CTO

Enovis names Ariane Schiereck Chief Digital and Information Officer

Colonial Pipeline names Darrell Riekena CIO

CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield announces Dorothea (“Dori”) Henderson as CDIO

Carol Lee Joins La-Z-Boy as CIO

Webster Bank appoints Vikram Nafde as CIO

Skillsoft has named Orla Daly as CIO

Brad Warezak Joins Rocket Lab as CIO

Milton’s Distributing and Gordon Logistics hires Scott Gardner as CIO

Baystate Health names Kevin Conway CIDO

Nicole White Joins Odyssey Logistics & Technology as CIO

FuelCell Energy hires John Dutsar to lead IT

Limbach Holdings promotes Christos Ruci to CIO

Yale University elevates John Barden’s CIO role

Medtronic appoints Lidia Fonseca as a new board director

New CIO appointments, June 2022

Northwestern Mutual appoints Jeff Sippel Chief Information Officer

Brett Craig promoted to EVP & CIO at Target

Springs Window Fashions names Chetan Balsara CIO

Chris Clark joins Black Rifle Coffee Company as CTO

Brown & Brown hires Kiet Tran as CTO

Craig Kwiatkowski, PharmD, named CIO at Cedars-Sinai

Donatos names Steven Graves Chief Information Officer

XIFIN appoints John Kelly as Chief Information Officer

Cenlar FSB appoints Steven Taylor as SVP & CIO

Foley Equipment welcomes Kirk Hay as its new CIO

Lincoln Electric names Lisa Dietrich EVP & CIO

Brown Harris Stevens names Chris Reyes Chief Information & Product Officer

Adventist Health appoints Jennifer Stemmler as Chief Digital Officer

First Bank hires Terrence Thomas as CIO

Saket Srivastava joins Asana as CIO

Mike Macrie has joined Melissa & Doug as CIO

New CIO appointments, May 2022

The Home Depot Promotes Matt Carey to EVP of Customer Experience and names Fahim Siddiqui EVP and CIO

Deb Hall Lefevre hired as CTO of Starbucks

Dentons Names Ash Banerjee as Global Chief Information Officer

John Hill joins MSC Industrial Supply as SVP and Chief Digital Officer

Carhartt appoints Katrina Agusti as CIO

Lenovo adds CTO of Solutions & Services Group to Arthur Hu’s CIO responsibilities

AMD appoints Hasmukh Ranjan to SVP & CIO following Xilinx acquisition

Craig Richardville named CDIO at Intermountain Health after merger with SCL Health

FirstEnergy Promotes Ernest N. Maley to VP & CIO

OneDigital Hires Marcia Calleja-Matsko as CIO

CarParts.com names a new CTO and a new CIO

Jessie Minton is the new CIO at Washington University in St. Louis

U.S. Medical Management appoints Kristin Darby as CIO

The Lovesac Company Appoints Todd Duran as CIO

Shokie Lopez is Santa Cruz Bicycles’ new CIO

Supplemental Health Care names Simon Curtis Chief Digital Officer

City of Oakland appoints Tony Batalla as new CIO

New CIO appointments, April 2022

PayPal Appoints Archana (Archie) Deskus as EVP & CIO

Jennifer Hartsock joins Cargill as Chief Information & Digital Officer (CIDO)

Rite Aid expands Justin Mennen’s role

Juan Perez joins Salesforce as Chief Information Officer

Mark Bloom joins Gallagher as CIO

Republic National Distributing Co. names Sanjay Shringarpure as CIO

Keolis North America appoints Alex Wu as CIO

Chico Moline assumes CIO position at Amentum

Partha Srinivasa is the new EVP & CIO at Erie Insurance

Waitr names Matthew Coy Chief Information Officer

Michael Smith is named CIO at InnovaPrep

Illumina welcomes Carissa Rollins as Chief Information Officer

Serta Simmons Bedding announces Shoukat Ali Bhamani as its new CTO

The CIA appoints La’Naia Jones as CIO of the agency

Dr. Karl Mathias appointed CIO for U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Boston Mayor appoints Santiago Garces as new CIO

Monogram Foods announces incoming CIO Dawn Drewry

Ann Madea has joined Simmons Bank as CIO

Matthew Gunkel is named Associate Vice Chancellor & CIO at UC Riverside

WOWorks hires Kyle Mark as its first CIO

Insight appoints Sumana Nallapati as CIO

New CIO appointments, March 2022

Sanofi selects Lakshmi Eleswarpu as SVP & Global CIO

Dupe Akinyede is named CIO of Resideo Technologies

CME Group promotes Sunil Cutinho to CIO

Joe Carroll Named CITGO Chief Information Officer

Mark Mospan is the new CIO at Foundation Partners Group

Painters Supply & Equipment appoints Tareq Falah to CIO post

MarketAxess announces new CIO, Nash Panchal

Just Born Quality Confections names Chidi Alams to CIO post

United Natural Foods elects Shamim Mohammad to its board of directors

Cadence Appoints Mary Louise Krakauer to Board of Directors

Former Morgan Stanley CIO, Sigal Zarmi, joins BigID’s board of advisors

New CIO appointments, February 2022

Wayfair names Fiona Tan Chief Technology Officer

USAA appoints Amala Duggirala to Enterprise CIO post

Sharmeelee Bala named CIO of J.C. Penney

U.S. Senate Confirms Kurt DelBene as CIO of the VA

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield appoints Cindy Langston as its first female CIO

FirstEnergy Names Steve Fortune Vice President & CIO

Research Triangle Institute International hires Jorge Elguera as CIO

Matthew Kurpinski named CIO for ITC Holdings

Matt Watkins is the new CIO at IMA Financial Group

EmployBridge appoints Don Sloan to Chief Digital Officer position

Neiman Marcus has promoted Vijay Karthik to SVP & CTO

Flexsys appoints Jose Boloqui to be CIO

Gelson’s Markets promotes Ron Johnson to VP & CIO

Integral Ad Science Appoints Robert Janecek as CIO

Innoveo Adds Veteran CIO Al-Noor Ramji to its Board of Directors

New CIO appointments, January 2022

TIAA Appoints Sastry Durvasula Chief Information & Client Services Officer

Fannie Mae appoints Ramon Richards as Chief Information Officer

John Sherman sworn in as Department of Defense Chief Information Officer

DXC Technology names Kristie Grinnell as its Chief Information Officer

Jane Moran has joined Mass General Brigham as CIDO

Genesys names Wesley Story Chief Information Officer

Farmers Business Network hires Kumud Kokal to be its first CIO

Dave Berry is the new CIO at Boardriders

Atlanticus Holdings promotes Kas Naderi to the CIO position

Matrix Medical Network Selects Tom Catchings as CIO

St. Luke’s names Chris Sorenson Chief Information Officer

Bindu Purushothaman named CIO of Satellite Healthcare

Ram Balasubramanian joins Canoo as Chief Information Officer

Careers, CIO, IT Leadership

The year ahead is likely to be characterised by recessionary pressures in key global economies, increasing borrowing costs, unpredictable supply chains, oil price uncertainty, and volatile demand. 

Regardless of the challenges of the past few years and the hurdles ahead, digital transformation investments in the Middle East, Türkiye, and Africa (META) are set to more than double across the 2021–2026 period, according to the latest forecast from IDC. 

The global technology research, consulting, and events firm says that digital transformation spending in the region will accelerate at a compound annual growth rate of 16% over the five-year period, topping 74 billion USD in 2026 and accounting for 43.2% of all ICT investments made that year.

At the recent IDC Directions event in Dubai, Steven Frantzen, Senior Vice President and Regional Managing Director EMEA at IDC stressed how crucial it is for tech leaders to keep focused on the future and be customer-centric.  “It’s important for every tech leader to think about the near, mid and long-term when it comes to technology. You need to work with your customer by continuing investment in digital transformation, but how do we help our customers?”

“We heard about the global recession, in the Middle East we continue to see economic growth in every sector, but if you are a large market in the USA or Europe, it will also affect your business here.”

Frantzen said many are expecting a recession in the coming year. “According to a survey made by IDC, 75% say yes, so we need to manage the recession for the long term because companies are not cutting spending in technologies, spending on digital technology by organizations will grow at eight times the economy in 2023, establishing a foundation for operational excellence, competitive differentiation and long term growth.”

At the Directions event, it was made clear that the digital and tech investments made by companies during the pandemic to build resilience could be put to test in 2023. This may be seen across key business areas such as customer experience, operations, and financial management, among others. 

According to Jyoti Lalchandani, IDC’s Group Vice President and Regional Managing Director for the META region: “The implementation of further digitalization in critical areas and a more rapid shift to a ‘digital business’ approach will be key to separating the thrivers from the survivors.”

The region is expecting to see digital transformation spending as a share of overall IT spend continue to grow, reaching 43.2% in 2026, up from just 29.4% in 2021.

Digital Transformation

GSMA’s Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2023 in Barcelona—the largest and most influential event for connectivity—is expected to attract over 80,000 attendees from 200 countries and over 2,000 exhibitors. This year’s event will explore themes of 5G acceleration, immersive technology, open networks, fintech, and ‘Digital Everything’, encompassing intelligent solutions, Internet-of-Things, Industry 4.0, and how every industry and enterprise stand to benefit from these immense opportunities in the digital space within a global digital ecosystem.

At MWC 2023, Huawei Cloud will showcase its goal of unleashing new digital value through Everything-as-a-Service, a framework designed to enable and connect diverse local and global partners—whether individual developers, small enterprises, or multinational corporations—to maximize the potential of the cloud. Everything-as-a-Service brings together Infrastructure-as-a-Service, Technology-as-a-Service, and Expertise-as-a-Service in a unified approach to provide a complete range of digital solutions within a comprehensive ecosystem of partnerships.

“Huawei Cloud delivers everything-as-a-service to help carriers accelerate their application modernisation and jointly develop the enterprise market to unleash digital productivity,” says Jacqueline Shi, President of Global Marketing and Sales Services, Huawei Cloud.

Visitors can also expect new key releases such as:

Pangu AI Models – pre-trained foundation models with billions of parameters, which have been used in over 100 scenarios across more than 10 industries such as healthcare and energyLanding Zone – an end-to-end solution that provides cloud resource management, and access control capabilities, which mapped to the business architecture of large enterprises Cloud on Cloud – a digital solution that enables carriers to quickly obtain Huawei Cloud capabilities through resale, dual brands, or self-build brands, and allows businesses to build and operate their own cloud services

When combined, the offerings allow partners to leverage Huawei’s deep know-how stemming from 30 years of experience in ICT innovation, recognised by Gartner’s 2022 Magic Quadrant for Cloud Infrastructure and Platform Services for its Ability to Execute and Completeness of Vision.

Unleashing the Potential of the Cloud through Ecosystem Building

Cloud adoption is booming as enterprises identify technology as a key driver of business success. AI-enabled services and powerful scalability options are among the benefits being leveraged by organizations as they drive digital transformation projects. IDC forecasts global cloud spending to exceed US$1.3 trillion by 2025, and by 2027, experts predict that cloud adoption will have become mainstream, with nearly 90% of organizations implementing some degree of cloud strategy.

However, for many enterprises, particularly start-ups and Small-Medium Enterprises (SMEs), the infrastructure investment, technological know-how, and specialised skillsets required for the transition to the cloud are potentially prohibitive.

Huawei Cloud addresses this by focusing on building shared excellence and developing the cloud ecosystem, with aims of building a partner network, empowering developers, and providing an application distribution platform for developers and customers in an ecosystem that is accessible to all.

Guided by the principle “to go fast, it is best to go alone; but to go far, we must go together”, Huawei launched its new partner network in June 2022 in its effort to go and grow with partners. This comprises two cooperation frameworks, GoCloud and GrowCloud.

GoCloud aims to broaden partner competencies on Huawei Cloud. Supported by Huawei’s developers and solutions architects, partners can re-engineer their applications and architecture to cloud-native, as well as build new products, solutions, and services on Huawei Cloud. On the other hand, GrowCloud focuses on driving depth, helping existing partners expand their customer base and grow revenue streams, premised on the idea of shared success.

This is complemented by KooVerse, Huawei Cloud’s global distributed cloud infrastructure designed on a unified architecture, provides partners with computation, storage, and networking as a service. The platform offers secure, stable, 50 m/s latency networking capabilities via more than 2,000 carrier networks, making it accessible to partners in over 170 countries in 78 Availability Zones, spanning 29 regions across the world.

The recent opening of a Centre of Excellence in Singapore, the European Cloud Hub in Ireland, and the launch of the Indonesia Region further attest to the rapid growth of Huawei Cloud’s global network while underscoring the emphasis Huawei places on the “In Local, For Local” principle which respects local business culture and supports local industry in every region they operate in.

Experts tout 2023 to be the year when new AI-powered tools and services make their presence felt across industries. Giving businesses a head start in the AI space is the cloud-native database GaussDB, which offers high-performance, high-availability, and secure real-time data lake capability to maximise enterprises’ data value.

Huawei Cloud also focuses on three core AI technologies, namely large pre-trained Pangu models that can be used to accelerate AI development and operationalisation, Opt Verse AI Solver designed to deeply integrate AI with operations research, and knowledge computing that uses AI to extract, express, and compute knowledge. Four DevCloud pipelines, comprising MetaStudio for digital content production, ModelArts for AI development, CodeArts for software development, and DataArts for data governance, offer developers, data scientists, and AI scientists the means to share, collaborate and work efficiently as a team from any location, within the same platform.

Beyond the technological aspect, SMEs and start-ups will need deep partnerships that can enrich their offerings to go further. With Huawei Cloud, they can connect with partners they need to thrive, such as system integrators and hardware providers, from among the developers and service providers within the ecosystem.

In turn, developers can connect with clients through the ecosystem while using the platform’s Technology-as-a-Service resources to streamline development and submit their offerings through the KooGallery, the Huawei Cloud marketplace.

The Right Partner to Build the Right Cloud Foundation

Jacqueline Shi delivering keynote speech at MWC 2023


Since its launch, the Huawei Cloud ecosystem has grown in capability and offerings, with more than 4 million developers and 41,000 partners making up a rich and diversified ecosystem, and over 10,000 offerings released in KooGallery.

Huawei Cloud’s ecosystem continues to welcome global partners to share in its vision of a rich, diverse, and prosperous ecosystem that can unleash digital value through leveraging “Everything-as-a-Service.” The ecosystem offers enterprises and organizations, regardless of size and resources, the chance to realise the true potential of digital technology and the cloud. Huawei Cloud’s global infrastructure, innovative edge, and deep expertise make it the ideal partner for those who want to go far.

MWC 2023 will run from February 27 to March 2 in Barcelona, Spain. Huawei Cloud will launch a series of innovative product solutions to support digital transformation and enhance the cloud journey for enterprises.

For more details, please visit https://www.huaweicloud.com/intl/en-us/


We’ve entered another year where current economic conditions are pressuring organizations to do more with less, all while still executing against digital transformation imperatives to keep the business running and competitive. To understand how organizations may be approaching their cloud strategies and tech investments in 2023, members of VMware’s Tanzu Vanguard community shared their insights on what trends will take shape.

Tanzu Vanguards, which includes leaders, engineers, and developers from DATEV, Dell, GAIG, and TeraSky, provided their perspectives on analyst predictions and industry data that point to larger trends impacting cloud computing, application development, and technology decisions.

Trend #1: More organizations will take on a cloud-native first strategy, accelerating the shift to containers and Kubernetes as the backbone for current and new applications.

According to Forrester, forty percent of firms will take a cloud-native first strategy. Forrester’s Infrastructure Cloud Survey 2022 reveals that cloud decision-makers have implemented containerized applications that account for half of the total workloads in their organizations. Kubernetes will propel application modernization with DevOps automation, low-code capabilities, and site reliability engineering (SRE) and organizations should accelerate investment in this area as their distributed compute backbone.

“I agree on the cloud-native first strategy [prediction] since Kubernetes is the base for modern infrastructure. But you have to take into account that cloud native first does not mean public cloud first. Especially in regulated environments, public clouds or the big hyperscalers won’t always be an option,” says Juergen Sussner, cloud platform engineer and developer at DATEV. “If you look into the startup world, they start in public clouds, but as they grow to a certain scale, cloud costs will become a big problem and the need for more control might come up to bring things back into their own infrastructures or sovereign clouds. So cloud-native first, yes but maybe not public cloud first to the same degree.”

While Scott Rosenberg, practice leader of cloud technologies and automation at TeraSky, agrees with Forrester’s prediction, he notes that there is nuance in the details. “The growth of Kubernetes, and the benefits it brings to organizations, is not something that is going away. Kubernetes and containerized environments are here to stay, and their footprint will continue to grow. As Kubernetes is becoming more mature, and the ecosystem around it as well is stabilizing, I believe that the challenges we are experiencing around knowledge gaps, and technical difficulties are going to get smaller over the next few years. With that being said, due to the maturity of Kubernetes, I believe that over the next year, the industry will understand which types of workloads are fit for Kubernetes and which types of workloads, truly should not be run in a containerized environment. I believe VM-based and container-based workloads will live together and in harmony for many more years, however, I see the management layers of the 2 unifying in the near future, as is evident by the rise of ecosystem tooling like Crossplane, VMware Tanzu VM Operator, KubeVirt and more.”

Even if organizations decide to take a containerized approach to their applications,  Jim Kohl, application and developer consultant at GAIG, says “there still is heavy lifting in moving the company project portfolio over to the new system. Even then, companies will have a blend of VM-centered workloads alongside containerized workloads.”

Similarly, Thomas Rudrof, cloud platform engineer at DATEV eG, agrees that we won’t necessarily see the end of VM-based workloads. “Our organization, as well as the majority of the industry, is already adopting a cloud-native-first or a Kubernetes-native-first strategy and will increase their investment in technologies like Kubernetes and containers in the coming years. Especially for new apps or when modernizing existing apps. However, it is also important to note that there are still many apps that run on virtual machines and do not work natively in containers, especially in the case of third-party software. Therefore, I think there will still be a need for VM workloads in the coming years,” says Rudrof.       

“This year, companies will focus on cost optimization and better use of existing hardware resources. Using containerization will allow you to better control application environments along with their lifecycle. It will also allow for more effective and faster delivery of the application to the customer. IT departments should reorganize some IT processes that use a VM-based approach rather than containers,” says Lukasz Zasko, principal engineer at Dell.

Trend #2: Optimizing costs and operational efficiency will be a focus for organizations looking to improve their financial position amidst an economic downturn and skills shortages. IT leaders and executives must use AI and cloud platforms, and adopt platform engineering, to improve costs, operations, and software delivery.

Gartner’s Top Strategic Technology Trends for 2023 advises that this year is an opportunity for organizations to optimize IT systems and costs through a “digital immune system” that combines software engineering strategies like observability, AI/automation, and design and testing, to deliver resilient systems that mitigate operational and security risks. Additionally, with ongoing supply chain issues and skills shortages, organizations can scale productivity by using industry cloud platforms and platform engineering to empower agile teams with self-service capabilities to increase the pace of product delivery. Lastly, as organizations look to control cloud costs, Gartner states that investments in sustainable technology will have the potential to create greater operational resiliency and financial performance, while also improving environmental and social ecosystems.

“Eliminating cognitive load from your developers by using platform engineering techniques makes them more productive and therefore more efficient. There’s always a discussion about what can be centralized, and what should and should not be centralized as it can cause too much process overhead when not giving this specific control to your developer teams,” Sussner says. “The rise of AI in this case can’t be overlooked, like GitHub Copilot and many intelligent tools for managing security and many other aspects of supply chains.”

However, cost savings isn’t necessarily a new prediction or trend for organizations in 2023, according to Martin Zimmer – Technology Lead Modern Application Platforms at Bechtle GmbH. “I have heard this for 10 or more years. Also, AI will not help with [cost savings] because the initial costs are way too high at the moment.”

On the other hand, Rudrof says, “AI has the potential to significantly improve the efficiency, productivity, and effectiveness of IT professionals and organizations, and is likely to play an increasingly important role in the industry in the coming years.” He is also optimistic about platform engineering as a trend that will impact enterprise strategies. “I believe that platform teams are essential in helping DevOps teams focus on creating business value and in providing golden paths to enhance the overall developer experience,” says Rudrof.

Trend #3: Infrastructure and operations leaders will need to rethink their methods for growing skills to keep pace with the rapid changes in technology and ways of working.

Gartner predicts that through 2025, 80% of the operational tasks will require skills that less than half the workforce is trained in today. Gartner recommends that leaders implement a prioritized set of methods to change the skills portfolio of the infrastructure and operations organization by creating a skills roadmap that emphasizes connected learning, digital dexterity, collaboration, and problem-solving.

“The main problem in 2023 will be how can we learn new skills fast and stay on top of all the new tools and technologies in every area. If you implement a toolchain today, tomorrow it’s old,” Zimmer says. He adds that implementing a skills portfolio is nothing new. “Connected learning, digital dexterity, collaboration, and problem-solving should be the ‘normal’ skills of everyone who works inside the IT organization. The days where an IT ‘guru’ sits in his dark room and runs away when you try to talk with him are long gone.”

While developing digital and human skills will always be important for current and future workforces as hybrid work and digital transformation initiatives take hold, organizations must also look inward to evolve company culture. Sussner believes that being able to react and adapt to change is a skill in itself that an organization has to develop. “Not only do DevOps teams have to adapt to changing requirements, but also company structures. If you take Conway’s law seriously, this means being able to develop software in an agile way, would also raise the necessity to be able to change company structures accordingly.” Conway’s law states that organizations design systems that mirror their own communication structure.

“This huge step in company culture requires brave managers adopting agile principles. So in my opinion, it’s not only about technology transformation, it’s also about company culture that has to evolve. If neither technology nor culture does not take part in this game, all will fail,” Sussner adds.

At a time when budgets and margins are tightening, leaders should take this time to re-evaluate investments and prioritize the technologies and skills that build a resilient business. As business success increasingly relies on the organization’s ability to deliver software and services quickly and securely, building a company culture that prioritizes the developer experience and removes infrastructure complexity to drive productivity and efficiency will be critical for 2023 and beyond.

To learn more, visit us here.

Cloud Computing

By Anand Oswal, Senior Vice President and GM at cyber security leader Palo Alto Networks

While mobile technology has been around for decades, the current generation, 5G, is increasingly being recognized for the exciting new benefits it brings to enterprises, SMBs, and public sector organizations. Specifically, when properly secured, 5G capabilities such as ultra-high speeds, high availability, massive network capacity, and ultra-low latency will support breakthroughs in digital transformation for new use cases such as private networks, network slice, and multi-access edge computing (MEC).

Organizations are drawn to 5G because of these new levels of reliability, performance, and connectivity. However, as 5G becomes how enterprises get work done, it places a greater emphasis on securing networks at all layers of the Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) model. For network operators, service providers, and equipment and solution providers, it’s no longer enough to secure voice and data across Layer 3 (network layer) and Layer 4 (transport layer) of the pipe. We must secure up to and including Layer 7 (the application layer) to ensure that business continues on in this 24/7 environment. 5G is designed to go places. Security needs to keep up.

As this technology becomes pervasive across the globe, PwC has forecast that the global economic impact of 5G will exceed $1.3 trillion by 2030.1 As organizations move to the next generation of connectivity, they will also need to confront potential new security risks. It’s critical for any organization moving to 5G to integrate security as part of the deployment from the outset—understanding that 5G networks are the business today and not simply an enabler.

Why protecting 5G is hard

5G is a major transformational technology that enables digital transformation of entire industry sectors and underpins entire economies. The proliferation of devices, the vast increase in intelligence at the network edge, and the aggregation of critical functionality at the network core bring challenges that together contribute to a perfect storm of security risk in 5G deployments.

Security for previous generations of mobile technology was not focused on detecting and preventing attacks on all layers, all locations/interfaces, all attack vectors, and all software lifecycle stages. Because 5G finds its way into mission-critical applications that affect every aspect of public and private life, it’s imperative to make sure that 5G deployments are protected by pervasive security that looks at all layers of the attack surface and provides controls to help mitigate risks. Enterprise-grade security enables organizations to take a Zero Trust approach to their 5G networks, including applying security on every level—down to the identification of every device, subscriber, and network slice.

Where are the emerging threats from 5G coming from?

Threats against 5G are likely to come from a few different vectors as attackers look to find the weakest link to gain access. 5G infrastructure involves multiple components, each of which represents an area where there is potential risk:

Virtualized infrastructure: 5G services will run on virtual machines (VMs) as well as Kubernetes-based container infrastructure in the cloud and in data centers. Threats against virtualization include denial-of-service attacks as well as misconfigurations, among others. There is also a risk of side-channel attacks, whereby an attacker is able to gain access to one piece of a virtualized infrastructure stack and then move laterally to exploit other connected elements.Network and management interfaces: At the network layer, there is a risk from attacks against signaling and data interfaces. Attacks against these interfaces can include address spoofing, message tampering, and potential meddler-in-the-middle eavesdropping attacks.Application and service threats: There are also risks from specific threats for applications and services. This includes advanced malware, command-and-control botnets, code injection, and application vulnerabilities.Radio rogues. 5G is a wireless protocol and there is risk from rogue base stations in the radio access network (RAN) that can be used to attack the network.

As for emerging threats, we see the dataplane as a potential battlefield. In the past, much of the security focus has centered on the signaling plane. However, given the expanded attack surface, it is becoming easier for adversaries to exploit vulnerabilities, API manipulation, and access controls, among others, on the dataplane, as well.

How leaders can improve 5G security

While there are emerging threats that organizations will face with 5G, there are also steps that can be taken to mitigate the risk.

Adopt Zero Trust: With a Zero Trust architecture, there is no notion of implied trust for the growing volume of devices and use cases on 5G. Instead, all devices and users are continuously validated in an approach that enforces least privilege across all the layers of the 5G stack.Embrace automation and AI: The complexity of 5G deployments and the massive device connectivity will require faster and more repeatable approaches to deploying security. 5G security will be best served with an AI-powered approach that can identify devices and enable automated policy-driven approaches to reducing risk.Take a platform approach: 5G is one part of a larger stack that organizations will deploy to enable applications. It’s critical to take a unified approach to security that considers all attack vectors. A platform approach should also provide granular application identification policies and protection against advanced threats wherever they come from.

Designing our safe and secure journeys together

5G represents a paradigm shift as organizations expand connectivity options to enable new capabilities. It also expands the attack surface with new interfaces and side-channel attack threats against virtualized network infrastructure. It’s critical to consider the risks as part of a 5G initiative and integrate security as part of the deployment from the outset.

As organizations move to the next generation of connectivity, security can’t be an afterthought. It’s imperative to build security into 5G networks from the ground up. 5G security should be deployable on any cloud platform—private or public, across multicloud and multivendor environments, as well as on the service provider’s 5G core network or at the MEC.

Advances like 5G can help us all go to places we’ve only dreamed of, but only if we work together to build in the safety and cybersecurity that will support that ride. Let’s prepare for the journey together.

1. “Health and social care to gain the most from 5G productivity and efficiency gains, which will add US$1.3 trillion to global GDP by 2030,” PwC Global, February 2, 2021

About Anand Oswal:

Anand Oswal serves as senior vice president and GM at cyber security leader Palo Alto Networks. Prior to this Anand, was senior vice president of engineering for Cisco’s Intent-Based Networking Group. At Cisco he was responsible for building the complete set of platforms and solutions for the Cisco enterprise networking portfolio. The portfolio spans enterprise products across routing, access switching, IoT connectivity, wireless, and network and cloud services deployed for customers worldwide.

Anand is a dynamic leader, building strong, diverse, and motivated teams that continually excel through a relentless focus on execution. He holds more than 50 U.S. patents and is focused on innovation and inspiring his team to build awesome products and solutions.

Data and Information Security, IT Leadership

We know that the Contact Center-as-a-Service (CCaaS) market is growing; an increasing number of companies are choosing this flexible model to support their CX operations, and this will continue through 2023. Vendors are also increasingly expanding the capabilities of their CCaaS solutions and evolving them at speed. What can we expect over the next 12 months? Here’s where Avaya sees the market heading…  

The Growth of Hybrid Cloud Among Large Enterprises

SMBs will continue to benefit from CCaaS this year with the ability to consume advanced capabilities that were previously out of reach. Enterprises, however, will use 2023 to gravitate towards a hybrid cloud approach as public cloud adoption grows and off-premises capabilities continually improve. Overall, it’s expected that 60% of enterprises will be using CCaaS by 2025. 

This transition is happening for several specific reasons:

Access to vendor-specific capabilities: The complexity of digital customer journeys, where no single vendor can adequately cover every necessary element, motivates vendors to partner and form multi-cloud systems. Large enterprises that leverage hybrid cloud benefit from innovative solutions composed of complementing capabilitieswithout having to abandon their on-prem investments. 

Innovation overlay: The pressure is on for enterprises to become more digital and agile using technologies like AI, automation, and API customization. A hybrid cloud environment allows them to leverage an innovation model that safeguards the stability of their existing operations. 

Reduced dependencies: A hybrid model allows enterprises to bring disparate IT environments together under a single management framework, minimizing dependencies between systems that run in different environments. 

Investment protection: Enterprises often contend with requirements of specific countries, industry verticals, or compliance and security policies and mandates. A hybrid cloud approach enables them to mitigate disruption as they migrate to the cloud in alignment with these requirements, ensuring service innovation and CX improvement irrespective of global economics and geopolitics. 

Cost optimization: Existing IT investments can’t be cost-effectively discarded in favor of new technology. A hybrid deployment model improves the economics of current investments by not disrupting users’ present environment. In fact, a recent study conducted by 451 Research across 10 countries found that, overall, the average savings possible for an enterprise with a hybrid cloud approach is 29-45%. 

On-premises and cloud both have demand for enterprises today. We expect 2023 to be a watershed year for enterprise CCaaS adoption, driven by hybrid deployment. 

Top CCaaS Capabilities of 2023 

A continued driver of CCaaS adoption will be innovation without disruption. Organizations are limited by proprietary, on-premises technology (hence why hybrid adoption will grow among traditional enterprises), meanwhile CCaaS capabilities continue to get better and better. These are the capabilities Avaya expects to be most popular this year:

1. AI and Machine Learning (ML)

AI and ML will continue to experience steady growth in the coming years. Large enterprises especially benefit from the ability to uncover operational efficiencies more quickly, reduce call volume (and thus, the burden on live agents), and help reps access information faster to accelerate resolution of issues. 

A quickly growing AI capability is AI noise removal, which eliminates unwanted background sounds for customers and agents during service conversations. AI-based voice and chatbots will also continue to grow in popularity. Any company that underestimates the value of AI in these areas will inevitably fall behind in 2023. 

2. Attribute-based Routing

It makes sense from both a cost and CX perspective to match customers with resources more intelligently based on business rules, internal and external context, and desired outcomes. Organizations can fine tune conversations, deepen customer relationships, and help agents succeed while improving First Contact Resolution (FCR) and reducing costly transfers.

3. Automated self-service

Give customers the freedom to choose their experience while reducing repetitive and routine calls for agents. Large enterprises once again stand to benefit most from the ability to automate processes and deliver faster response times across customers’ channels of choice. Web self-service portals, conversational IVRs, SMS, and live chat will all be in high demand for self-service this year.

The “freedom to choose” aspect of self-service is paramount and must be a top focus in 2023. Customers should never feel like they’re fighting an automated assistant to get what they want, nor should they be forced to use it. 

Greater Emphasis on Cost Containment

CCaaS helps contain contact center costs by improving contact duration and deflection, however, contact center projects in 2023 will need to show even more hard-cost savings in order to move forward. Avaya expects the following investments to be front and center as companies further tighten the reins: 

Identity and verification: Verifying and authenticating a customer in a contact center using common methods like Knowledge-based Authentication (KBA) takes anywhere from one to two and a half minutes. Research shows eliminating this time using Identity-centered Security can save as much as $3 a call, creating the potential for millions in annual savings while at the same time providing a better customer experience. 

Digital redirection: Redirecting calls to a digital or mobile self-service experience like SMS, messaging, chatbots, or a mobile app can save $3-5 per call, reducing interaction costs by up to 80% while giving callers the information they need more efficiently.    

CTI screen pops: The faster agents can access information, the faster they can resolve issues and move on to assist more customers. CTI screen pops can also help increase sales through targeted cross-selling and upselling by providing agents with the right information at just the right time. This will be a key investment in 2023.

Demand for Cloud Efficiencies and Security 

A big focus for 2023 will be minimizing the impact to the customer experience with increased data protection and privacy in the contact center. Can zero trust initiatives be successful without affecting customer perception? Absolutely. In fact, this is why Avaya is partnered with Journey, a digital identity verification and authentication platform provider that is blazing a trail in this field with award-winning innovation. 

Improving the speed, accuracy, and techniques used in contact center customer verification and authentication will be crucial this year for making necessary improvements to operational efficiency, security, customer experience, and costs. You can read this blog to learn more about how Identity-centered Security better protects customer data while increasing organizational efficiency. 

Want innovation without disruption? Register to attend Avaya Engage 2023 this June to learn what Avaya Experience Platform can do for your business.  

Hybrid Cloud

For many of today’s global enterprises, it’s a struggle to adapt quickly to emerging challenges.

With supply chain issues and the impending recession, digital transformation remains a pressing strategic imperative. However, key digital transformation milestones remain out of reach for far too many teams. To make real strides in each of these areas, Value Stream Management (VSM) has emerged as an urgent demand.

Earlier this year, Broadcom commissioned extensive industry research to learn how VSM adoption is evolving and which key trends are emerging in 2023. Conducted by Dimensional Research, this survey polled more than 500 IT and business leaders. Respondents came from five continents and represented a wide range of industries.

The findings from this survey are now available in a report entitled “2023 Value Stream Management Trends.” We’ll offer critical insights from this report in the following sections.

#1. Enterprise leaders are more focused on the customer than ever

When asked about their top strategic business focus for 2023, 58% of respondents cited “increasing customer value,” the highest-rated response. This objective was ranked third in a similar survey conducted the previous year.

The report’s authors state, “It now seems companies are shifting focus from rushing products to market that risk decreasing customer value with defects, bugs, or quality problems to a clear focus on maximizing customer delight with value and quality.”

#2. A disconnect between business and IT is impeding the attainment of key objectives

As they look at their challenges heading into 2023, senior leaders can be forgiven for having a sense of déjà vu. More than two-thirds (68%) of respondents say their businesses continued to be plagued by a long-standing issue: the disconnect between software development and business strategy. An even higher percentage of technology teams, 72%, are frustrated by business leaders’ constant changing of business priorities.

Since the advent of the pandemic, supply chains have presented challenges for businesses in a range of industries—and supply chains remain the highest-ranked challenge as teams enter 2023. Forty-nine percent of respondents said ensuring their company has reliable supply chains is a top challenge.  

#3. VSM adoption is widespread and growing

Today, the consensus around VSM is nearly unanimous: 92% agree that VSM can help optimize the product lifecycle. Further, 86% have adopted VSM or plan to. By the end of 2023, 60% of organizations will be shipping products using VSM.

The survey also revealed that digital transformation initiatives are tightly aligned with VSM. Ninety-five percent of organizations currently pursuing VSM initiatives are also pursuing digital transformation.

#4. VSM is delivering significant benefits for digital transformation

For teams that have implemented VSM, a vast majority of respondents, 95%, report that VSM has helped deliver key benefits. When asked what benefits VSM has already shown, six responses were selected by one-third or more survey participants. Topping the list were increased transparency (42%), improved organizational alignment (39%), faster delivery of solutions to customers (38%), and enhanced data-driven decision-making (37%)—which can all be integral to advancing digital transformation.

The research shows that those building VSM capabilities are seeing an improved ability to measure and track customer value, which, as outlined earlier, is the top strategic imperative for leaders.


This recent survey offers some compelling proof points of the power of VSM. As we head into 2023, the businesses that have established VSM practices are better positioned to achieve their digital transformation objectives and deliver more value to customers. To learn more, download the report “2023 Value Stream Management Trends.”


Explore ValueOps Value Stream Management, built to manage what you value most.

Digital Transformation

At Broadcom, we see challenges companies face first-hand, and in turn how technology trends impact the world’s largest companies. We’re sharing the top 5 predictions that you should be planning for in 2023.

Stay tuned for future blogs that dive into the technology behind these predictions from Broadcom’s industry-leading experts:

AI and automation will play an even more expanded role in technology

Whether in chips, software, or services, Broadcom believes artificial intelligence and automation go hand-in-hand in driving operational efficiencies, adaptive processes, higher performance and stronger security. Enabling AI becomes even more crucial across the entire IT stack.

AI-powered features are finding their way into every layer of technology that organizations use. According to one leading analyst firm, flexibility and adaptability are now the rules of the game — many businesses have learned this the hard way during the COVID pandemic. For many organizations, these changes demand “resilience-by-design” and “adaptive-by-definition.”

User experiences become critical in a hyper-connected, intelligent world

Broadcom believes people will have higher expectations for exceptional digital experiences across a wide range of devices and applications in 2023 and beyond. As our world becomes more inter-connected and based in artificial intelligence, user experience becomes even more critical to drive customer and employee satisfaction and retention. Employees expect consumer-friendly interfaces and continuous uptime even as they use business critical applications. Consumers have high expectations for digital experiences in online banking, email, cloud storage, video on demand (VoD), smart digital assistants, and virtual reality.

Trust management becomes critical for cybersecurity

Broadcom believes a move to distributed and decentralized trust will increase rapidly in 2023. This decentralization leads to new ways of transacting, communicating, and doing business — and not just for humans. Different applications have different access-granting or -restricting policies. The criteria on which a decision is based may differ greatly among different applications (or even between different instances of the same application).

What will be common among them will be the need to grant or restrict access to resources according to security criteria. A shift in managing trust will need to happen so that the security mechanism can handle those different criteria. With distributed trust, risk will need to be managed more closely across every aspect of business. And security around trust must be customized to the business. This will require artificial intelligence that enables security to rapidly adapt to each customer’s environment.

Multi-cloud will help deliver stronger business value

Broadcom believes large global organizations will continue the transition to customizing their cloud infrastructure to better fit their particular business in 2023. The cloud conversation is shifting from a technology discussion to a business- and even industry-model discussion. Vertical industries, such as banking, healthcare, and manufacturing, are shifting toward an agile platform supported by a portfolio of industry-specific business capabilities directly relevant for their specific industry. These industry clouds offer more adaptability, more business functionality, and more innovation.

Multi-cloud is the future of enterprise IT. A multi-cloud approach enables the flexibility to manage and protect data across different environments – private, public, or sovereign – at will. And when integrated with sovereign cloud, multi-cloud enables customers to deliver differentiated services at scale while remaining secure and in compliance with regulatory frameworks. Maintaining this choice, control, and agility is both crucial for growth and a daunting task for enterprises globally.

Wireless broadband will connect our digital future

Broadcom believes innovation in wireless broadband infrastructure will deliver more inventive applications in 2023. This next-generation wireless broadband, with its high speed and low latency capabilities, will power the internet at the edge to deliver immersive augmented reality and virtual reality, whole-home video distribution, gaming, and telemedicine to name just a few. Wi-Fi 6E and Wi-Fi 7, using the 6 GHz band, will complement the multi-gigabit “10G” broadband coming into residences and enterprises to enable new experiences that extend beyond traditional communications.   

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Digital Transformation, IT Leadership

The pandemic has led many organizations in the Middle East to shift towards a digital-first strategy. According to IDC’s group vice president and regional managing director for the Middle East, Turkey, and Africa, Jyoti Lalchandani: “This means choosing digitalization options over non-digital options as a rule while implementing or enhancing new products, services, channels, customer/employee experiences, or operational processes.”

While many organizations in the Middle East region already had a digital-first strategy before the pandemic, over 40% of the CIOs of medium and large organizations IDC surveyed over the last month say they have shifted towards being “digital-first” because of the pandemic. A quarter of the respondents say they are now extending the digital-first strategies developed during the pandemic.
The Middle East is on the edge of a massive digital disruption. Companies and governments are aware of the benefits of new technologies and digitization: optimizing costs and operating resources, ensuring customer satisfaction, attracting new customers, and gaining a competitive advantage through digital adoption.

GCC countries are increasingly looking to invest in Digital. Saudi Arabia has created its Saudi Vision 2030 program and the United Arab Emirates is driving initiatives through its UAE Digital Government Strategy 2025.
UAE’s program aims to double the contribution of the digital economy to the country’s GDP from 9.7% to 19.4% over the next 10 years, and the strategy is already bearing fruit.

Jyoti Lalchandani highlights the flagship giga projects in Saudi such as NEOM, the Red Sea Project, AMAALA, and Ad Diriyah that will drive significant technology spending in 2023 and beyond as the Kingdom builds greenfield digital infrastructure and platforms, leveraging advanced technologies like AI/ML, IoT, edge, and 5G to create innovative use cases.

At the same time, as organizations across the region become more digitally mature, they must transition from enabling digital transformation to running a digital business. This requires them to derive a larger share of revenues from digital products, services, channels, and platforms, something that is now a priority for 50% of the Middle East CIOs surveyed by IDC.

“As their organizations make this transition over the coming 12-18 months, CIOs will be increasingly challenged to accelerate the digitalization of operations (process automation, reengineering, and productivity improvements) and deliver insights at scale across the organization by building capabilities in data and enterprise intelligence,” adds Lalchandani.

IDC says we can expect to see a considerable jump in interest around the metaverse over the course of 2023, IDC research shows that only 2% of CIOs in the Middle East currently have a commercial use for the metaverse, 20% of them are planning to develop one in the next 12 months.

LEAP and Gitex: Must-attend events in the region

LEAP is Saudi Arabia’s global tech event focused on bringing together leading tech corporations to inspire the next generation of start-ups and venture capitalists.
The first edition of the conference was held in February last year and attracted more than 100,000 visitors. This will be the second edition of the technology conference which has been launched with the theme of ‘Into New Worlds’. LEAP 2023 will be held from February 6-9 in Riyadh Front Expo Centre, Saudi Arabia.

During Gitex week, Dubai was the stage for Chinese company XPeng’s flying car to make its first public trip. Also last year at Gitex and Gisec (Gitex event focused on cybersecurity) the topic of women in IT came to the fore, with a full-day panel exploring initiatives to close the gender gap in technology. In terms of cybersecurity, much discussion was about how to increase the percentage of women in cybersecurity roles over the last decade, women make up only 25% of the global cybersecurity workforce, according to the latest (ISC)² Cybersecurity Workforce Study.

“Nowadays, only 25% of women are studying computer science. In 1985 that percentage was 37%. We are attracting fewer women to come to the university,” said Inass Farouk, marketing director at Microsoft UAE during the conference. At the same time, women are so underrepresented, the cybersecurity is woefully short of staff; (ISC)2 estimates that the cybersecurity industry urgently needs 2.5 million professionals.
This year, Gitex will take place from October 16-20, and for the first time in the MEA region, Morocco will host the Gitex Africa edition in June.

What will CIOs in the region be focusing on and why?

Cloud is undoubtedly becoming the de facto operating platform for digital business, and we can expect to see a greater number of CIOs across the region move beyond the initial stages of cloud adoption to focus more on the broader implementation of business apps in the cloud.

Hybrid multi-clouds will become the norm in 2023, with spending on both public and private clouds continuing to increase, and application modernization will accelerate as organizations look to transform their app estates leveraging the cloud, according to IDC’s Jyoti Lalchandani.

Sustainability will be another key theme throughout the year, with around one-third of the Middle East CIOs surveyed by IDC having already started the data discovery process to identify the internal systems that house the key data required to drive sustainability initiatives. This year COP28, the 28th session of the Conference of Parties will be held at Dubai Expo City from November 30 to December 12 to discuss and find solutions for climate change.

Technology Industry