Movers & Shakers
Gain Insights from the industry's Best and Brightest
Ever wonder how the leaders of the Infocomm industry got where they are today? Watch this space and hear from the luminaries themselves what inspired them to join the Infocomm industry and what inspired them to join the Infocomm industry and what continues to drive them to excel.
Seah Thiam Siong
Land Transport Authority
Seah Thiam Siong
Managing public transport projects may be challenging, but the rewards make it worthwhile, says Seah Thiam Siong of Land Transport Authority (LTA), who is also a strong advocate of SCS certifications.
| Has the project management landscape changed in the public transport arena in recent years? If so, briefly describe how. |
The convergence and mutual reinforcement of social interaction, mobility, cloud, and information in recent years have largely changed the entire ICT and business landscape, including that of the public transport arena. Project management is now not only about managing in-house IT projects or outsourced vendor services. The entire eco-system of internal and external stakeholders, system integrators, technology providers, transport operators, research institutions, etc. comes into play.
| Can you share some of your experiences managing some of the complex public transport projects? |
Public transport projects are challenging, exciting, and, most importantly, rewarding because every successful delivery and implementation of our projects translates into delivering a great public transport service to commuters. They are challenging because they involve the integration of sensors with real-time systems, engagements with public transport operators, and meeting the needs of commuters. And exciting because of the opportunities to collaborate with research institutions and technology leaders, experiment with visualization of data analytics, and dissemination of timely and relevant information that enhances the commuting experience through digital channels such as the MyTransport.SG mobile app and One.Motoring Portal. The speed of development is fast-paced and requires an agile development mindset, processes, and tools with which to cope. The opportunity to make a difference has been very rewarding.
| What are some useful tips you could give to IT professionals to manage outsourced IT projects better? |
Outsourcing is a means of obtaining the necessary resources to deliver the intended outcomes of IT projects. Dealing with the outsourcing service provider as partners, developing rapport and relationship with every management level of the service provider, and aligning the strategic intent and outcome of the outsourcing contract are key ingredients to successful outsourcing.
Olivier de Rotalier
Olivier de Rotalier
Singapore has all the ingredients to produce the next breakthrough in the gaming industry. Olivier de Rotalier of Ubisoft Singapore explains his reasons for this view.
| Will the next big thing come from Singapore? |
I was lucky to be given the exciting challenge of building Ubisoft Singapore from scratch to a staff strength of 300.
I came here directly from Paris and did not know much about Singapore at the time. The first thing I did was to meet as many people as could, to build up my understanding of this exciting country quickly. And I must say, I was surprised at first. When I talked to people about my project, I faced a lot of scepticism.
I cannot tell you how many times I heard phrases such as: "Singapore is not a place to innovate", "starting a creative company in Singapore does not make sense", or "let me tell you, the next big thing will not come from Singapore".
Furthermore, when you know how expensive it can be to produce anything in Singapore, it certainly does not make sense to be here if there is no hope for major breakthroughs and high quality!
Six years later, here we are. Ubisoft Singapore has 300 employees and has contributed significantly to some major innovations in the gaming industry. Amongst other achievements, it made noticeable contribution to the Assassin's Creed franchise (with more than 70 million units sold), a fact that is recognised by the whole industry. And the naval battles, a feature of Assassin's Creed III praised by critics and gamers worldwide, was the brainchild of the Singapore studio.
Singapore ticks all the boxes
How did we manage to innovate in Singapore in only six years? First and foremost, by tapping into Singapore's large pool of talent. With some of the best schools and universities in the world, Singapore can nourish any industry with people who have strong fundamentals and who will be able to learn and grow quickly in their job. To me, the most impressive aspect is how the education system here understands and adapts to the priorities of these industries. Schools and companies work hand in hand to improve existing curriculums and adopt new programs to strengthen their students' skill sets.
Stay Ahead at the Cutting Edge
Wondering what is the next wave of changes or breakthroughs in the ever-dynamic Infocomm industry. Get the first-hand insights and knowledge from leading companies and thought leaders and stay ahead!
Agile "Full-stack" Software Development Approach Makes A Comeback
Division of labour and decades-long outsourcing of IT projects have turned software developers to mindless code entry operators, devoid of innovation.
Division of Labour vs. Full-stack
"Software is eating the world" as coined by Marc Andreessen is really coming to pass. Every company today is a software company. Companies that did not acknowledge this fact are either gone or are facing the disruptions caused by the new software development approach that will lead to their demise. However the "software" Marc Andreessen referred to is not something that can be achieved by the traditional "waterfall" approach, in which roles are clearly defined, tasks divided, and people treated as resources.
The approach that is driving all the disruptions we are seeing today in the world is what we called the Agile "Full-Stack" approach, in which a group of cross-functional product manager, UX and UI designers, software engineers, data scientists, devOps work together as a small, but highly innovative and productive "squad". This approach, which is not new, is taking the world by storm today.
Holistic Approach to Software Development for Banking and Finance
The banking and finance sector is the lifeline of any economy in today's world. So efficient, reliable and robust banking and finance infrastructure is a must for us to conduct our day-to-day business.
Factors of Authentication
Local banks have made great progress in the area of user authentication. Initially we had the first factor of authentication (something that you Know) eg. User ID and Password. As hackers started breaking into passwords, banks have now introduced the second factor of authentication (something that you have) eg. a token via SMS, or via a physical token generator.
I am sure we will be forced to use a third factor of authentication someday (something that you are) eg. finger print. These days, mobile apps are available to scan your fingerprints and it is only a matter of time before banks figure out how to integrate them into their authentication process securely and seamlessly.
Technology Revolution, Empowerment 'N' Development Series
Engage your contemporaries on the newest developments! Listen to industry stalwarts and leading technical experts and get first-hand insights and knowledge of the next trending scene in the ever-dynamic Infocomm industry.
Microsoft Azure Workshop
Recently rebranded from Windows Azure to Microsoft Azure- it is the public cloud computing platform and infrastructure created by Microsoft, for building, deploying and managing applications and services through a global network of Microsoft-managed datacentres.
On a cloudless afternoon of the 28th March 2014 the Enterprise Cloud Computing and Virtualisation Special Interest Group (ECCV SIG) of the Singapore Computer Society, in conjunction with Microsoft and Infront Consulting Group, ran a workshop introducing over 20 IT Professionals and SCS Members to Microsoft Azure. The workshop was hosted in Microsoft's office at One Marina Boulevard, Raffles Place and was designed to be an introduction to Microsoft Azure with hands-on lab experience.
Recently rebranded from Windows Azure to Microsoft Azure- it is the public cloud computing platform and infrastructure created by Microsoft, for building, deploying and managing applications and services through a global network of Microsoft-managed datacentres. Fortunately for Singapore users and customers, Microsoft has based its South East Asia Azure Datacenter here on this island state providing excellent performance and access speeds for those wishing to host services in the public cloud.
The afternoon workshop was kicked off by Mr Martin Yates, Chairman of the ECCV SIG, who spoke about the advances in cloud computing and envisioned the future for public cloud computing platforms. Mr Daniel Mar, a Principal Consultant with Infront Consulting Group and Microsoft Virtual Technical Solution Professional (vTSP) then proceeded with an introduction to Azure. Microsoft Azure has grown significantly over the past 12 months, now commanding $1 Billion USD in yearly revenue with subscriptions up 48% over the past half year. There are over 8.5 trillion+ objects in Microsoft Azure storage with over 50% of Fortune 500 that use
Microsoft Azure services.
Grooming for Your Career
The key essence of grooming is that we first have to manage our own body before we can manage anyone else. However, going just by the hardware of technological specialty alone is tough when everyone around you is just as competitively technical. Thus, simply going by the conventional knowledge of dressing well and standard grooming techniques no longer elevates you above the crowd. The solution to this is - understanding the software of marketing your specialty.
Jill Lowe, the founder and CEO of Jill Lowe International Pte Ltd in Singapore, has been a pioneering icon in the Image and Aesthetics Industry in Asia since 1985. A talented corporate trainer for many top echelon executives and managers of many MNCs and Forbes listed companies, she is also the publisher of a luxury fashion and lifestyle magazine. Recently she also authored two very well received books for teenagers called "Dressing Smart for Boys" and "Dressing Smart for Girls".
Everyone understands the real need to dress well and look presentable to the other party. In the corporate world, grooming and the way you carry yourself are held in high regard as to making a first and lasting impression on anyone you meet. How you look and dress has sufficient power over how you are perceived by people you encounter, regardless of how capable you are. Thus, grooming has become an essential part of our everyday lives, affecting our perception of people around us and vice versa.
The key essence of grooming is that we first have to manage our own body before we can manage anyone else. However, going just by the hardware of technological specialty alone is tough when everyone around you is just as competitively technical. Thus, simply going by the conventional knowledge of dressing well and standard grooming techniques no longer elevates you above the crowd. The solution to this is - understanding the software of marketing your specialty. It goes beyond just dressing to the nines and neat grooming, but dwells into how this can give people the confidence to know what you can really do. This is the edge above the competition where standard marketed grooming tips and styles has become nothing else but a social leveler.
Driving the brightest ideas in town
Looking for a marketplace spotlighting the best student IT projects and potential networks to link up with investors? Here could be the next virtual Silicon Valley transforming breakthrough ideas into useful products or services.
Time to get your innovation engine started!
SP DMIT Talent Showcase
It serves to recognise projects that have exhibited the talents of the student or provides a useful service to society.
The SP DMIT Talent Showcase spotlights students who have displayed their ingenuity through developing creative concepts that emphasise innovation. It serves to recognise projects that have exhibited the talents of the student or provides a useful service to society. This platform showcases a number of impressive creations and these are two especially notable projects:
The expertly produced Canine Candidate depicts a story of a friendly local police officer who unexpectedly finds happiness after he chances upon a canine friend who changes him from a sad, lonely character to a content, jovial man. For its competency in animation, this project has won the Bronze Award for the Animation category of The Crowbar Awards.
The students' app developing skills are also demonstrated in the showcasing of the mobile application, LifeLine. Developed by students from the Diploma in Information Technology (DIT), it is designed to assist field paramedics during emergency deployments. The practical usage of this remarkable application, it has been awarded the Gold Awards for the tertiary category of the Singapore Infocomm Technology Federation (SiTF) Awards 2012, as well as the Commendation Award from the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA)'s Home Team Innovation Festival- SAFE Programme 2012.
IT Professionals at Work and Play
Missed an event? View the highlights of the events here and be sure to join us at the next upcoming event!
Five Secrets to Building a Successful Career
Building a career is tough. No question about it. It takes hard work, patience and having the right attitude, but is extremely rewarding in the long run. Just as Rome was not built in a day, there are few, if any, shortcuts in the professional world. This is the reality that youth and young professionals take time to accept and understand. We all enter the professional world dreaming of being on top of the ladder, without paying too much attention to how we may climb that ladder.
Building a successful career is all about making the right choices. The good news is that there are a plenty of things youth and young professionals can do to ensure they are off and on track on the right career path:
1. Know What You Want To Do
We see a marked different in performance between employees who are "trying out a role" to see if they like it and employees who know exactly what they want. Youth who are trying out a role tend to focus on pros and cons of the job, putting a higher weightage on the negative aspects. More often than not, they move from job to job in the early years of their career, which reflects poorly on their resume.
On the flip side, employees who know what they want career-wise are focused on excelling in their job, and their better performance tends to reflect this. The challenge many youth face is in knowing what they want to do career wise, as well as what type of company they want to work for, whether big or small.
Youth today have more opportunities than any other generation to know what they want to do. Building a career is like real estate, having strong foundation in a specific skill and after, building both vertically and horizontally. Do at least 1 – 3 internships to explore career opportunities, join school-organized career and networking sessions, and talk to industry professionals, to find out more about job options.