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Alpna Doshi

"If telecom industry can provide life time validity and pay only for what you use, I expect IT and technology providers to follow the league"

Alpna Doshi
CIO
Reliance Group

Alpna has over two decades of experiences in Information, Communication, and Entertainment industries. She is responsible for driving key IT Transformational Initiatives to support Business growth for Reliance. She was awarded the “Woman CIO of the Year 2010” by CTO Forum India.

My roles and responsibilities as a CIO

In my journey with Reliance I have three roles to play– Chief Innovation Officer, Chief Infrastructure and Integration Officer, Chief Intelligence Officer. Also, juggling between being Chief Digital Officer and Chief Data Officer. With the onset of fast changing technologies and its alignment with new business strategies, CIO’s role in the company has become even more important. The contrary is also true, where CIOs may also be perceived as roadblocks, throttling opportunity and growth. It has been observed that business and technology are going through a sea change. IT budgets are going down for many companies while the technology spending is heading North. A typical CIO, end of the day, translates technology acquisition and business strategy. Now, the business seeks lowering the time to market– cutting down the long development cycles. The CIO’s role needs to change. Not essentially, with these technology acquisitions the corporate technology roadmaps get developed. The responsibility still stays with the CIO– to keep the support departments running and keeping the “Lights-On”.

The areas in business environment where solutions do not yet exist or not up to the mark, and which if existed, would've made job easier.

Strive for excellence is hallmark of mankind. We change therefore we are. Change is the only permanent thing in the world. Reliance is agile: it adopts and transforms with market conditions. Hence the technology has to keep pace.

Some of the business environment related challenges are: How do I ensure and be assured that my IT systems and network is "Delivering" services to customers and business instead of being just operational.

In generalization of reporting and summarization of KPIs, I am worried about those customers who could not be provided appropriate attention or were not served in time. IT framework should bring out such exceptions in order to see each customer satisfied.

Lessons learned and advice for fellow CIOs

Health first: Be healthy.
While we are all learning in this journey, try and be yourself. You have a unique way of looking at things for which you have been selected over competition: maintain it.
Speed your BI– your business shall reap benefits.

Challenges in technology to meet enterprise needs in 2013 and expectations

IT is basic necessity for any organization like house-hold electronics (fridge,TV, etc) and it should be as easy to operate and use. Reliance recognizes the value add that International Standards bring to fore. I expect technology providers to work on is "Standards".

Instead of building their own proprietary implementations: let us follow the time tested International standards like; TM Forum and other such bodies. This gives users flexibility of collaboration, expansion, seam- less upgrade and replacing solutions if providers do not perform.

I want long term commitment from my providers. If telecom industry can provide life time validity and pay only for what you use, I expect IT and technology providers to follow the league.

Technology trends impacting enterprise business environment

• Extensive use of Data-Services on mobile devices for business communication. Collaborative offering would be winning strategy. e.g. Telecom Industry (in collaboration with video conference providers) competing with travel industry.
• Mobile application with location based services and consumer information making "Context Based Offering".
• Wifi tethering or mobile hot spot.