Gone are those days where information technology or applications were limited to the legacy teams. Now is the age of the low-code and no-code eras where the new generation is quite knowledgeable and hands-on
This is an exclusive interview conducted by Santosh Vaswani, Content Writer & Editor at CIO News with Kaushik Majumder, Head of Digital Services & Information Protection Officer – South Asia at BASF, on his professional journey
When asked how he planned his career path to be a successful Head of Digital Services & Information Protection Officer, Kaushik Majumder, Head of Digital Services & Information Protection Officer – South Asia at BASF, in an exclusive interview with CIO News, said, to me, the one thing that drives and will always keep driving me is to learn and try out new technologies. I always give a lot of importance to details, the absence of which leads to bad decisions. Throughout my career till date, I have worked in various industries, serving several roles in information technology (IT) and digital leadership, which helped me advance my skills in the areas of people, strategy, and transformation. While working with different teams, I always try to put the customer experience first. For example, when we buy things on Amazon, we should also be able to provide a similar experience to our end customers while using our WebShop. Knowing your organisation is very important when we work in a multinational environment that needs to be inclusive and collaborative. Gone are those days where information technology or applications were limited to the legacy teams. Now is the age of the low-code and no-code eras where the new generation is quite knowledgeable and hands-on. In today’s world, it is very important to deliver the right solution at the right time. I have been fortunate to work under several great leaders who have assisted me in transitioning from a manager to a leader.
When asked about challenges he faced in his career path and how he overcome them, he said, honestly speaking, challenges excite me and help me to keep myself motivated as what comes next is accomplishment or achievement. When I first took charge as the Global Network Manager at the first information technology hub for one of the Prominent European Multinational, I came to know, after joining, that I was replacing a team that had already left. But I did not take much time to accept this as a challenge and requested my director to bare me for three months as it is going to be on the job KT where we support and get to know the details. We not only were able to take full control of the situation much ahead of the committed time, but also were able to leave our positive mark with the end users. This included supporting 110 countries with diverse cultures and business models. The things that helped us achieve this were our common objective and dedication to not letting the ball drop.
When asked about challenges faced by other technology leaders today in a similar industry while implementing digital technologies, he said, our challenges are mutli-fold. Cost, choosing and adopting the right technology and being secured from cyber threats and data loss are among the topmost priorities. Gone are those days where we used to develop our strategies for five years and used to keep working on the same with adjustments. Now the life span of a strategy varies from two to three, with revisiting the same every six months. One thing I can share that has given a great result for me and my team, which we have learnt from Google, is the concept of OKR (objective Key Result), which is developed with the team from the bottom up and top down, and then it becomes a team target. We always take new initiatives in partnership with the divisions where learning and success are jointly achieved. All demands need to be supported with a strong business case, and being proactive to optimise costs where possible is the key. On top of that, everyone wants to become more and more digital. This is the new normal for us as technology leaders.
When asked how technology leaders can overcome the challenges faced, he said, as technology leaders we must be well converse with what is happening outside and inside. We should focus on creating a digital culture by creating digital citizens. Encourage and empower users to develop their own workflows and dashboards using the tools and platforms available through training and hand holding. Every investment needs to be well discussed and ensured with a realistic ROI. We also need to be proactive to keep reviewing the basics, which means the infrastructure upgrade requirements in today’s world are very dynamic. With the adoption of more and the right cloud and more SAAS-based solutions, it enables us to be more agile. One of the most important aspects in today’s world when it comes to people is to encourage and keep developing their competency to become an early adaptor of the upcoming technologies.
When asked about best practices/industry trends/advice he would like to suggest to fellow technology leaders for their successful professional journey, he said, I would first like to congratulate everyone for what we have been able to achieve in our individual areas in these challenging times. People say COVID has been a great digital transformer, but I would also like to add that it was possible because of the technology leader’s preparedness. This, in simple words, means ensuring the basics are right and being logical and realistic about the needs and wants of the organisation to make it ready for tomorrow. People are the key, which means the right competency within the team is a must. And it’s very important to be updated internally and externally.
He added that we need to accept the fact, change is now a new constant and that changes are now going to be very frequent. This also means we must be prompt with decisions and, as there is nothing right or wrong, we need to be adaptive to changing dynamics so that the right solution is adopted at the right time.
CIO News, a proprietary of Mercadeo, produces award-winning content and resources for IT leaders across any industry through print articles and recorded video interviews on topics in the technology sector such as Digital Transformation, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), Cloud, Robotics, Cyber-security, Data, Analytics, SOC, SASE, among other technology topics.