Laseinde: Why Persons Behind Business Transformations Should Be Celebrated .

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The Chief Information Officers awards will this week honour outstanding C-level tech professionals in Nigeria, who delivered business value to their organisations and the industry at large, through the use of technology during the year under review. In this interview, the CEO of Edniesal Consulting, organisers of awards, Abiola Laseinde, spoke on the rationale for the awards, and how the platform will sustain a viable ecosystem for Nigerian tech professionals and organisations. Oluchi Chibuzor provides the excerpts:

Can you tell us what the CIO award is all about?

The Chief Information Officer (CIO) Awards is Nigeria’s foremost recognition platform for outstanding C-level tech professionals, who have during the year under review, delivered business value to their organisation and the industry at large, through the innovative use of technology.

What is the rationale behind the creation of the awards?

The essence of celebrating the CIOs is that, hitherto, this class of business leaders are hardly visible nor celebrated in most organisations, but now their role has increased in importance over time as they evolve from information to innovation and leading the digital transformation initiatives. In some companies, depending on the organisational culture, they are asked to wear multiple hats of business strategists and change leaders. It is therefore a commitment to recognising individuals and enterprise excellence in innovation and technology across different sectors. It is indeed the celebration of the individuals and talented teams behind business transformations in Nigeria.

Tell us about the nomination process, who qualifies for nomination and participation in the CIO Awards?

The inaugural CIO Awards is open to the C-level technology leaders within an organization who have the overall responsibility and control of the IT vision and direction of the company.

How are entries into the CIO Awards reviewed?

As I speak with you, entries have been reviewed and evaluated by a team of independent judges (Interim and Grand jurors respectively). These are very senior executives drawn from different sectors with expertise on this subject matter. The reviews are carried out based on various criteria including business innovation, special projects, impacts and strategic business leadership. Our Jurors are looking out for nominees who are leveraging leading-edge IT practices to produce measurable results. Our Chairman, Jury is Mr Ade Bajomo, Executive Director, IT & Operations, Access Bank and President, Fintech Association of Nigeria.

What is the overall objective of the CIO Awards?

The CIO Award is created to serve as a mark of individual and enterprise excellence. Essentially, the awards seek to celebrate outstanding tech professionals, who have during the year under review, delivered business value to their organization and the industry at large, through the innovative use of technology.

How will the CIO Awards contribute to the advancement of innovation and technology in Nigeria?

We are honouring organisations and executives driving IT innovation in Nigeria. Our awardees will form a cloud of inspiring examples of how IT leadership as strategic business partners are reshaping the future. We are convinced that the CIO Awards will further project the positive impact of technology and the tremendous benefits of disruptive thinking by these leaders.

Tell us about Edniesal Consulting, the organisers of the CIO awards?

Edniesal Consulting Limited is an enterprise governance firm, providing business consultancy to diverse corporate and individual clients across several business sectors. Interestingly, enterprise governance of information technology is a relatively new concept that is gaining traction in both the academic and practitioner worlds. Going well beyond the implementation of a superior IT infrastructure, enterprise governance of information technology is about defining and embedding processes and structures throughout the organisations that enable both business and IT people to execute their responsibilities, while maximising the value created from their IT-enabled investments. So many players are demonstrating this value and Edniesal Consulting has chosen to recognize and celebrate them.

What are attendees to look out for at the CIO Awards?

The CIO Awards ceremony will be a hybrid event. There will be an online and onsite audience enjoying a syndicated event that will include delightful networking, insightful presentations and wholesome entertainment.
The ceremony will also feature the unveiling of The CIO Club Africa.

Do you have support from other brands?

Yes, we do. We have PWC as our Technical Partner while brands like Access Bank, Microsoft, Reliance Infosystem, Global Accelerex and many others are supporting in various aspects of the awards.

Where do you see the CIO Awards in five years?

In five years, it is our desire to see the CIO Awards become the most influential gathering and platform for CIOs and senior IT executives alongside business leaders in Nigeria and in Africa.