Q&A: Is the coronavirus the real Chief Digital Officer?

IT veteran and academic Josef Langerman, head of engineering capability and ways of working at Standard Bank Group, explores how organisational change helps businesses deal with crises.

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With the business landscape evolving as a result of COVID-19, organisational change is becoming more important as a way of helping businesses adopt new strategies and modes of working.

We discussed why transformational charge is so hard, and technologies that support remote work during the current crisis, in this Q&A with Josef Langerman, a 16-year veteran at Standard Bank and a professor of practice at the University of Johannesburg. Langerman has occupied several roles during his career, including head of development, group head of engineering transformation, acting CTO, and group head of IT strategy, enterprise architecture and organisational change. Excerpts follow:

Can you give some insight into what your dynamic role as head of engineering capabilities and ways of working entails?

josef langerman profile pic Josef Langerman

Josef Langerman is head of engineering capability and ways of working at Standard Bank Group.

Getting the technology right is the easy part. Culture is what moves the technology forward. However, culture is always resisting change. In my role, I have to think about the way we work in this new world and that's where Agile and DevOps come into play. To make those aspects work you need culture, and to implement shifts in work culture I engage stakeholders including the board of the organisations, the executive committees (ExCos) and people in the work force to drive change through that entire process. In essence, my job is basically that of a change agent.

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