Inspiring the next generation of IT talent

By Tara Bal, Head of Communications, NetApp APAC



Rick Scurfield and Tara Bal at the S P Jain School of Global Management, with Dr Indu Niranjan, Dean MBA (Global) & Associate Professor, Finance, Suresh Kumar, Director, Corporate Relations & Career Services, and students in the Masters of Business Administration program


With the global digital revolution, talent in the information and communications technology sector is in short supply around the world, including Asia. From Indonesia to Singapore to India, governments across the region are working with the private sector to rapidly progress their smart city agenda and address urgent megatrends like ageing populations and growing urban density. This is driving immense demand for IT services and professionals, due to the fundamental role of data management to organizational efficiency, flexibility, and business continuity.


Yet one of the biggest hurdles in developing this supply of talent for such professionals was the lack of necessary work experience and specialized skills. For example, Singapore may lack 30,000 IT professionals by 2017 due to a decline in local graduates, according to estimates from the Info-communications Development Authority of Singapore.


At NetApp, we value employees as our competitive edge. Employee development is critical to the growth and retention of our workforce, and helps to ensure our people also flourish as individuals. Likewise, we recognize the importance of cultivating the next generation of talent entering the industry, with initiatives in the education sector such as our Academic Alliance program that trains students and enhances student employability in the IT job market.


As part of this commitment, on March 17 our APAC President Rick Scurfield spoke to over 45 students in the Masters of Business Administration (MBA) program from the S P Jain School of Global Management. He was invited to the School to introduce NetApp, discuss the latest technology trends in 2016, as well as share his personal career tips with the MBA students through his own professional insights and personal anecdotes.


Here are some excerpts from his presentation:



Rick Scurfield introduces the company and shares how NetApp is solving tomorrow’s problems and future-readying the world. He highlighted that IT is a profession with distinct possibilities of touching every aspect of people’s daily lives, a profession that keeps people connected in this globalized world.



“In 2016, we will see organizations increasing investments on converged infrastructure, driven by the need for simplicity, speed and lowered costs, and the emergence of DevOps as a key use case driving growth. The all-flash data center will become a practical reality as flash adoption become increasingly prevalent with decreasing prices.” – Rick Scurfield



Rick together with Dr Indu Niranjan, Dean MBA (Global) & Associate Professor, Finance (furthest right), as well as Sachin Jain, our student emcee and moderator for the evening (second from right).



Rick with the faculty and students from S P Jain School of Global Management. From left: Gladys Lee, Manager, Branding & Public Relations; April Culina, Assistant Manager, Corporate Relations; Sachin Jain, Global MBA student; Suresh Kumar, Director, Corporate Relations & Career Services; Imran Sidi, Global MBA student


“We had an engaging session with Rick who immediately connected with our student body through his vast experience in the technology sector. His insights on the IT trends of 2016 were well-articulated, and provoked a dialogue on the critical role of IT in driving business innovation.” - Dr.Indu Niranjan, Dean MBA (Global) & Associate Professor, Finance


Comments from the MBA students:


“It was really great to have Rick at our campus. I got to know a lot about NetApp and the industry trends of the future. Thank you!” – Simranjit Singh


“Rick’s insights were golden words of future by NetApp. It is my honor hosting Rick’s presentation at our school.” – Sachin Jain


We are honored to have been invited by the School to talk to their students. To quote Rick, “S P Jain’s unique tri-city model is truly progressive and relevant today; the ability to understand and adapt to different cultures and environments is essential for anyone looking to join the top global companies.”


In a world connected by data and technology, every person is a ‘global citizen’. The crème de la crème of the next generation of talent will be those who are able to understand and drive organizations in both local and global contexts.


Data Fabric is NetApp’s vision for the future of data management. It gives you the freedom to seamlessly manage your data across the hybrid cloud. You can move data where you need it most, innovate faster, and always make the best decisions for you and your organization.


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