Intelligent CIO Middle East Issue 81 - Page 42

FEATURE : SKILLS & TRAINING
Among the domains in the highest demand in the region and globally : cloud computing , Machine Learning , Artificial Intelligence , data science , software engineering and cybersecurity . The industry is being urged to develop strategies that address skills development and training in unison in these critical domains create a mass pool of skilled professionals .
Gaurav Mohan , VP Sales , SAARC and Middle East , NETSCOUT , said the Middle East has been embracing Digital Transformation for some time now , which has resulted in the creation of a large number of technology-related job openings . Mohan IT employers , especially in the UAE , have faced considerable challenges in filling these positions with experienced professionals .
Ram Narayanan , Country Manager , Check Point Software Technologies , Middle East , said expanding knowledge and developing skills is an ongoing process that never ends .
“ The more you learn , the better your chances are for success in this competitive world . Of course , it ’ s easier said than done – but when we empower our employees by supporting them throughout their tenure with helpful resources like training videos or conference calls ; they ’ re able to perform at optimum levels ,” he said .
Narayanan said the future is now , and it ’ s a fast-paced one . Organisations need employees who can keep up with the changing landscape of business – that means developing new skills as well .
Check Point Software Technologies offers a range of courses that will help your organisation create an effective , efficient , and business-focused strategy for developing future workforce skills to match emerging opportunities . “ These training courses are available from its global network of Authorised Training Centres ( ATC ) that help meet the growing demand for IT security professionals and helps in battling the rapid rise of cyber-crime by providing professional instructors , facilities , and training resources .”

SINCE CIOS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR ALIGNING TECHNOLOGY SKILLS WITH STRATEGIC OBJECTIVES OF THEIR COMPANY , THEY CAN IDENTIFY WHERE COMPETENCES ARE NEEDED .

“ Organisations now more than ever need to identify technical talent with leadership potential who will serve as role models for IT talent .
In turn , CIOs do need to enhance their team ’ s learning opportunities , whether these are through coaching relationships , formal training , or other initiatives , and show a clear commitment to the development of their team ,” said Mohan .
Dr Neamat El Gayar , Director , Centre of Excellence , Applied Artificial Intelligence and Data Science , and Programme Director , MSc in Artificial Intelligence , Heriot-Watt University Dubai , said there are several upskilling and reskilling traps that employers fall into . “ I see this as a problem not only relevant to the Middle East but around the world , since we are witnessing an unprecedented need for reskilling employees . One of the most common mistakes that enterprises make is giving all employees the same training regardless of their level of experience or specific needs for improvement . This may result in employees accumulating certifications without fully benefiting from the training and applying it to their work .”
In addition , El Gayar noted that sometimes enterprises rush to invest in training without addressing core work culture issues including belonging and engagement , especially considering the challenges that come with remote work . “ Also , enterprises often fail to define tangible goals for their needs , i . e what are their specific goals from training the employees ? What do they need to achieve and when ?
She pointed out that another mistake enterprises can fall into is waiting until they see a decline in skills . “ Employers should get ahead of potential setbacks before reaching this point as a big gap usually indicates a lack of engagement with employees at every level . This can be avoided by implementing a continuous review process and facilitating communication . Finally , enterprises should focus on getting employees more involved in the upskilling process , as opposed to simply informing them . Reskilling should be designed differently for each team to ensure it reflects their needs . Engaging employees in the process can be more effective and ensure a fruitful outcome of the training ,” she added .
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