By James Ratemo in Nairobi
Registration of the CIO 100 awards has officially closed with over 600 entries from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and Ethiopia.
The competition, themed “Innovation for business value” targets participants across East and Central Africa, and will climax with the Awards gala which will be held in Nairobi at the Safari Park Hotel & Casino, from the 23-25 November to honour 100 organisations within the region.
Over 15 top notch speakers have already confirmed to grace the award ceremony.
“These are all C-level speakers with tons of experience in making technology work for organizations. Some of the areas of discussion at the symposium will include Enterprise Cloud Computing, Business Mobility, Enterprise Resource Planning, Information Security, Innovation, Business Intelligence Data Centres and Next Generation Networks,” Mr Hare said.
“We cannot disclose the names at this time, due to obvious reasons… after this we move to adjudication and indexing the CIO100 shortlist by the CIO Editors. This process will ensure that shortlisted applications are sound, complete and in compliance with the CIO 100 submission rules,” says CIO Director Harry Hare.
Mr Hare said the quality of entries has been “excellent” and “many companies have entered interesting projects from light weight business mobility projects to heavy Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) initiatives costing millions of shillings.
The applications show a lot of depth in the adoption and implementation of IT projects in the region.”
The shortlist will now be given to the regional panel of judges.
He said unlike other business conferences, CIO 100 is a peer-to-peer conference where CIOs and other senior IT executives share knowledge, exchange ideas and learn from each other.
“They know the pain points in technology and look for common solutions. This is a fertile ground for collaboration and identification of common solutions for common problems,” said Mr Hare.
“The industry has been very supportive, we are getting a lot of interest for organisations both within and outside the region who are keen on being part of the event. We also continue to receive sponsorship from technology companies that want to associate with the regions IT decision makers. Sponsorship provides them an opportunity to position themselves as leaders in the sector.
The CIO 100 Awards were introduced in 2010 and seek to celebrate organisations that have used information technology in innovative ways to deliver business value.
The survey is based on how the companies were able to create competitive advantage, optimising business processes, enabling growth or improving relationships with customers.
A team of judges drawn from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and Ethiopia will review the applications and make initial recommendations about each entrant.
Each application will be read by members of the CIO 100 judging panel, who will rate it on a scale for each criterion. Final selections will be confirmed with all scores being kept confidential.
The number of entries will ultimately be reviewed to the top 100.
The top CIO of the year will receive the CIO of the year award, while other participants will receive awards ranging from special, Storage, Infrastructure, green edge, security, networking, leadership, plus one and technology awards.
Over 350 companies participated in last year’s annual competition, with Safaricom (M-pesa, Nairobi stocks exchange and Equity bank (m-kesho) leading the pack, in innovative products. The competition did not leave out higher learning institutions.
Makerere University of Uganda was ranked 5th, Kenyatta University came in the 7th place, Kampala International University at 45th place, while Dar-es salaam University college of education was ranked in the 98th place.