We are the women in cloud. We solve problems, see possibilities and create impact. We are making a difference, from the corner office to the doctor’s office and from the factory floor to the farmer’s field. This could be you.
We’ve created this page to spotlight the intersection of two very important things to us at Deloitte: the transformational power of the cloud and the women whose talent and innovative mindsets are enabling clients globally to unleash that power to grow and thrive.
In these profiles and videos, you’ll see the personal and professional stories of women who work in the Cloud practices of the Deloitte organisation around the world—women from different cultures and backgrounds and at differing stages of their careers. But two things unite them: a passion to drive organisational and social innovation through Cloud and the talent to deliver it for their clients.
Most of us use the Cloud in our daily lives, whether it’s streaming services, customer service inquiries, fitness trackers, or ride-sharing apps. But it’s much more: Cloud is the lynchpin of the advanced technological capabilities—such as AI, analytics, intelligent automation and Blockchain— that will be essential to most private and public-sector organisations in the unfolding age of disruption. Don’t just take it from me, Jody McDermott, one of our featured Women in Cloud, says: “Cloud is at the heart of everything happening. If you want to be at the centre of growth for the next five to 10 years, Cloud is the place to be.”
As a father of two daughters who work in technology, I am passionate about this topic. I expect that a woman will, in the near future, be occupying my position in Deloitte Global’s Cloud leadership. (I’m just keeping the seat warm.) Deloitte boasts many extraordinary women in technology and leadership positions, including Deloitte Global Offerings and Assets leader, Heather Stockton and Globalise Consulting Leader, Mark Walsh. And we are determined to do more, by bringing more women on board to enhance our cloud practices with their unique perspectives and innovative thinking. Not all of the women profiled here came from technology backgrounds and that’s just fine—at Deloitte, we believe that Cloud isn’t just about the technology, it’s about its transformative impact. Or as Christine Cederberg, another of our Women in Cloud, puts it: “It’s about the problems it solves for and the business value it brings.”
So please enjoy the stories of these remarkable women. And inquire about what else is happening at Deloitte to drive impact and make a difference. If you like what you’re hearing, get in touch. This could be you.
Globalise Consulting Cloud Transformation Sponsor and Global Core Business Operations Leader
Francine Bey spends her days making sure that some of the world’s most important networks are up and stay up, 24/7. Whether those networks belong to hospitals, beverage companies, online gaming services, or financial organisations, her job is to keep things running like clockwork.
As global operations lead for Cloud Managed Services, Francine’s teams keep tabs on the day-to-day cloud environments of more than 150 clients, many of them major global brands and organisations, for whom glitches or downtime could have a major financial, security or customer-experience impact.
Her behind-the-scenes role is a high-pressure one and, as she herself says, not the most glamorous. Yet she talks about it with the enthusiasm and humour of someone for whom going to work is like opening a Christmas present every day of the year.
In fact, when she calls Christmas Day her favorite day, it’s her job she’s talking about. It’s the day where one client’s operations gets put to the ultimate test, when many thousands of people across the globe go online to play the new gaming system they found under the tree; a day when the complex cloud infrastructure that allows to them to play seamlessly needs to be failsafe.
Whenever Francine’s son sits with his game console, it’s a reminder of a job well done. “I know that I'm helping to make sure that the data is intact and the networks work efficiently, so that he can text or talk to his friends real-time while he's playing that game,” she says. “Being the behind-the-scenes person ensuring he has the ability to play because of my day-to-day operations, that's the fun part.”
The managed cloud services role isn’t just about keeping the petabytes flowing, however. It’s also about ensuring clients’ cloud capabilities are agile and scalable. “We’re looking ahead to what is out there, what's coming … to make sure their environments are healthy, that we can sustain their environments and that we can build them in the cloud for future projects and the things they want to do.”
Following her university degree in Communications, Francine was originally interested in the broadcasting industry. However, while working in the office of a value-added IT services reseller, she would often answer the customer help-desk line while it was unattended and found that she had a knack for solving caller problems. Delighted at her innate ability, her employer supported her training to become a qualified IT engineer.
In her decade with Deloitte, Francine has seen the technology space expand in potential for women like herself. “There was a time when you couldn't find women in technology—and now we realise, especially at Deloitte, that women in technology is really the future,” she says. ”It’s women that are innovative, women that are doing a lot of diverse and inclusive AI work, women performing data analytics and women building many applications that solve problems.”
So, what advice would she give young women wondering whether a career in technology and specifically the cloud, is right for them?“
I would say, run through the fields and figure out what it is you want to do. There's so much out there.”
From being an industrial designer, to leading the award-winning Microsoft Technology Services Practice at Deloitte New Zealand, Emma’s professional journey is transformational and interesting. Though designing a physical product and coding seem poles apart, to Emma’s surprise and motivation, she realised that ‘creativity’ is the common factor that helped her be successful in both industries.
Emma’s career transformation was not organic, as the weakened demand in her design industry forced her to shift her focus and change direction. She taught herself to code, following the advice of a mentor who changed her perception of technology and coding – from something she thought was done in a dark back room, to a tool for creativity. “It was a creative space where you could make amazing things. So that really tick[ed] the box.”
Emma went on to land a role at Microsoft, where she built her specialist knowledge in Microsoft Technology Services. Today, she is playing a vital role in helping to build a strong team of technology consultants who focus on delivering transformative cloud solutions for Deloitte clients. She, along with her team, are using innovative approaches, such as creating an ‘Azure Migration Factory,’ which uses tools to migrate, deploy and maintain quality solutions at a lower cost.
Emma believes that almost every challenge that we have in an organisation or society can be aided by cloud technology. For her, cloud is an enabler in transforming businesses and solving complex problems to build a more sustainable world – be it smart buildings, banking, healthcare, manufacturing, agriculture, or other areas of life.
Emma finds it exciting to apply her design thinking skills to a client’s business problems – thinking about it creatively and outside the box to come up with different ideas to achieve a client’s vision and, sometimes, even, redesigning their vision. “I think some of the most exciting work that I get involved with and my team does is around transformation—looking at the business and completely transforming the way it might work. That kind of work just really sparks my creativity and that's the kind of work that I find I am the proudest of.” Fortunately for Emma, she is not alone in her pursuit of bringing this new dimension to Deloitte clients.
Within Deloitte, Emma has found a supportive group of women to whom she looks up to and from whom she can learn—a team who advocates for and supports other women. Taking this one step further, they have formed their own group called Wahine Toa -- which means a “female warrior” in Maori language. It brings together women from Deloitte and externally to exchange ideas and discuss concerns. The members of Wahine Toa connect not only informally to build friendships, but also in planned sessions where they explore different ideas and diverse perspectives on many topics, such as, Women in Tech, parenting, imposter syndrome, feminism and coaching.
Highlighting the extensive job opportunities available, Emma mentioned the Deloitte New Zealand Technology Cadetship Program. The program aims to bring in a diverse group of people who are looking to pivot to or start a new career in the cloud space. It is much like an apprenticeship program, with structured and ‘on-the-job’ training. “You could be a parent returning to the workforce or maybe a jewelry designer who wants to pivot to a new career. So really interesting, new ways that we're thinking about bringing in people and a diverse group of people, willing to learn and try new things.
”If you are interested, join Emma firstname.lastname@example.org to catapult your career with cloud.
Christine Cederberg has a unique vantage point from which to lead her clients into the cloud-enabled future: She’s not only their consultant, she’s also a customer.
As a Canadian in Ottawa working with the country’s governmental and public-sector organisations, she likely knows what better public services should look like and deploys that end-user’s insight to help her clients leverage the cloud for more efficient, responsive and customer-friendly outputs.
It’s all about bringing the same strategic vision and capabilities that power business success into the heart of public bureaucracies—and it’s a task she relishes.
“I believe that the biggest advantage to cloud and to the digital transformation of the government is in providing more integrated, more accessible solutions and services to Canadians”, says Christine, adding: “Cloud isn't just about the technology—cloud is about the problems it solves for and the business value it affords.”
From her childhood taking the family’s electronic gizmos apart just to see how they work and into her university days studying electrical engineering, Christine was always driven by a passion for technology. But there’s limited pre-requisite for new entrants to cloud services (including women) to have a similar career path, she says.
“Some of the most successful women that I have recruited into cloud have come from non-technology backgrounds—women that perhaps studied Commerce or HR and decided that ‘I'm interested in the possibilities that cloud enables for people and for clients, but I’m wondering, am I capable of working in this industry without having without having a traditional technology background?’ And the answer is yes, because if you want to learn and you're interested, cloud can be for everyone.”
Christine, whose husband is Swedish, spent 20 years in Stockholm, first working in telecom doing radio system design—“really nerdy” stuff. She had not considered consulting, thinking it full of “people way smarter than I was and that I would not fit in at all.” But she did eventually make the move into the industry. She recently landed at Deloitte and loves it: “Consultants are like the perfect marriage of salespeople, technologists and client relationship people, so I can't believe it took me this long to find my home and I’m really happy.”
And Christine wants the next generation of women to join her. “Being a woman in technology, I love fostering and mentoring the next generation of leaders and specifically of women leaders, I'm pretty passionate about that. It’s important for me that other women who are who are entering into their careers see that there are many other women at Deloitte in leadership now —and that they see the art of what is possible.”
Natalie does not exactly remember the time when her interest in technology was ignited – back in high school or late primary school – but what she distinctly recalls is the excitement that she felt initially. It started with a love for social media sites that then progressed into dabbling with web designing.
It is no surprise, then, that she went on to finish her college degree in technology, a bachelor’s degree in Information Technology & Systems from the Australian National University. Initially, Natalie joined Deloitte Australia as a graduate in the Technology, Strategy & Architecture team; and through networking and guidance from mentors at various stages of her career, Natalie has been able to find her passion – cloud advisory.
Natalie now sits within Deloitte Australia’s Cloud Engineering practice, specialising in client advisory services. Though the type of work in cloud may be quite broad, Natalie took the opportunities to try out different types of engagements and to work on a variety of things that really focus on her specific interests within cloud—as when she provides advice to Deloitte clients on their medium- and long-term cloud strategies, including helping them determine which of their applications are suitable to move to the cloud.
For Natalie, “cloud services introduce organisations with opportunities to modernise and become future-ready through a variety of services and capabilities.” Natalie plays an important role helping Deloitte clients use cloud and find innovative and practical solutions to complex pain points – one of the recent examples was an Australian bank project, where she successfully executed a cloud migration.
The most exciting part about cloud for Natalie is the change. She points out, “There are so many different and so many new capabilities that are being introduced through cloud services. For me specifically, that keeps it interesting because things are always changing and there’s always something new to learn.” She continues, “My favorite kinds of engagements and my favorite type of work are really some of those long-term pieces of work where it starts with initial conversations with the client around what are the possibilities and some of the new capabilities that they may look to unlock.”
Working in the cloud is more than just a job for Natalie and she strongly recommends cloud to the aspiring colleagues who share a similar passion for technology. She wants to pass on the same advice that she received from her mentors, “Don't be afraid to fail. It’s ok to do things you haven't done before. You won’t always get it right but learn from the past and have a go.”
Natalie advises young aspirants to invest in themselves and suggests that a good place to start getting an understanding of cloud services is through certification and learning courses. In addition, Natalie strongly advocates the need for more women in cloud, as “everyone brings their own background, their own experiences and their own previous knowledge. Having more and more women working in cloud can only help us progress further because it's really bringing in different ways of thinking about how to approach a problem.”
Personally, Natalie has really enjoyed her journey with Deloitte – the opportunities to explore various aspects of the cloud, the impact she has been able to make with different clients and most importantly, the culture and people that have helped her to thrive.
If you share the same passion as Natalie, join her at email@example.com to soar with cloud.
Technology has interested Divya—as a child, she inquisitively opened her parent’s electronics just to understand how they worked. Fortunately, her parents were supportive of not only her childhood exploits but also her interests in a career in technology. Later while pursuing her computer science engineering degree, she developed an interest in “data” after realising how even a small dataset may play an important role in shaping business decisions and strategies.
Divya started her professional career within the actuarial department of a product firm, where she built her experience in data visualisation, business intelligence and data modernisation skills. She started exploring other avenues through a combination of opportunity and curiosity about other industries -- paving the way for a career in consulting.
Divya joined Deloitte India five years ago and has since been guiding and enabling Deloitte customers to use data and analytics in the cloud. “I help them build innovative data modernisation solutions using data lakes and cloud with a vision to increase the adoption of such applications by users. I work closely with my clients in shaping up their cloud strategy, providing intelligent dashboards to visualise data and take business decisions. I feel empowered in this role, to apply my skills in cloud, which is in return helping my clients to realise their dreams of moving to cloud.”
This feeling of empowerment, she reflects, has fostered a deep-rooted sense of trust, belief and ownership in her role – three things that set her apart from others. She loves the fact that her role allows “authority to take decisions, be responsible for the delivery of the projects and the endless opportunities to innovate and collaborate within my workplace.”
Divya strongly believes that cloud presents enormous opportunities in uplifting and modernising clients’ legacy applications. She believes that for organisations to grow a rapid pace, they need to leverage the power of the cloud—limitless scalability that allows setting up and running applications at scale and worry-free maintenance options that enables organisations to focus on creating value for their customers. “I see huge application of cloud in solving age-old organisational challenges, which includes data storage, processing, modelling, DevOps, infrastructure, maintenance and data consumption related problems.”
In the recent project that she led and managed, she conceptualised, designed and demonstrated a data lake modernisation solution for one of Deloitte’s largest consumer goods clients. Working closely with the client for nearly two months, she not only gave them the confidence to move to cloud, but also helped them to see the value of Deloitte’s homegrown Accelerators and Assets that clearly differentiate Deloitte's strengths and experience in cloud. She takes pride in the fact that defining a clear roadmap of value realisation has helped Deloitte client save millions of dollars of operational overhead and strengthened her relationship with them.
In addition to her technical skills, Divya has embraced her own personal experience of being a women leader in cloud at Deloitte to break some of the biases they face. “I believe that during the last two years when pandemic struck us, it became even more necessary to build a comfortable atmosphere in the team and make the team members feel heard and appreciated and valued.”
Divya recalls the time when there were not many women in leadership positions in technology; though, the growing urgency of having more diversity to bring different ideas to the table has greatly changed this dynamic. She advises women and technologists looking for a career opportunity in cloud “to be open, to learn and to experience new things.” According to her, cloud is the backbone of important technologies that define our lives, now and in the future, so “if you want to be at the centre of growth in the next five to ten years, then cloud is definitely the place to be.”
Join Divya at firstname.lastname@example.org to be part of the cloud conversation.
The era of boxy old desktops and MS-DOS holds a certain nostalgia value, even if present-day computer users prefer today’s speed and power. For Annie Yan Guo, it was her first encounter with a 386 CPU machine that sparked her fascination with technology. That high school experience of touching the PC keyboard stoked her passion enough to lead to university studies and a career at the leading edge of computing.
A veteran of nearly two decades in China’s expanding technology industry, Annie leads the Financial Cloud team within Deloitte China’s cloud engineering practice. It’s a busy role, as more and more of the country’s finance departments—often in large, traditional enterprises—dip their toes into the waters of cloud migration.
It’s a complex challenge to tackle modernisation of old on-premise architecture, but it’s one she relishes. “In our market, many of our solutions have to deal with a very large number of different systems,” she says. “Our cloud solutions are able to integrate with various systems, which is very important to our clients.”
Annie’s workload is especially full, thanks partly to government regulation requiring all businesses to do away with paper billing and switch to digital invoicing. Her team helps clients migrate their data from legacy systems onto cloud solutions to facilitate the digitalisation. Generally, her team tackles everything from business needs assessment to cloud migration through to the operation of cloud services.
She says many large companies in China, including banks, are extremely cautious about data security and tend to deploy only private cloud solutions, although more institutions are opening up to working with public cloud providers—which as, Annie points out, are at the leading edge of cybersecurity. As the move to cloud broadens, more organisations are also entering the realm of software-as-a service (SaaS) on the cloud.
“Cloud is very flexible. We can use it to help clients do new things, work in different ways and create efficiencies. This is what I find very interesting. The technology landscape has become more complex and clients demand more agility and scalability,“ she says.
Annie’s experience regarding the representation of women in technology is different from her peers in many other parts of the world. In her university classes, nearly half were women. And of the approximately 200 people on Deloitte China’s cloud engineering practice, she says the majority are women. Not all of them are on the engineering side; many work in business analysis, an important component of delivering the most effective solutions to clients. Annie proudly says she is treated equally as a woman in her field, both by clients and colleagues.
Annie came to Deloitte in 2020 with a successful track record in consulting and the SaaS industry, including being one of the first engineers in the Chinese market to deliver the solutions of one of the big global public cloud providers. Noting that Deloitte China recruits many university graduates each year, she’s keen to see new generations of female cloud professionals among them. Hers are most definitely impressive footsteps in which to follow.
For Dina Hofmann, the wonder of the cloud is easy to describe. She first realised its transformative potential when she held her first smartphone in her hand.
“Even being in the IT industry, cloud for me started as an individual experience, specifically when the first smartphones were released,” Dina says. “This was really when I realised, ‘wow this is the next big, if not biggest, technical revolution. I can access my data anytime, on the go and on whatever device.’”
As a cloud leader in Germany specialising in large-scale cloud business transformations, Dina’s opinion of cloud is still anchored around the great opportunities cloud presents. “I believe cloud is the greatest technology investment and opportunity that we have,” she says. ” I’m passionate about leveraging cloud’s capabilities to reinvent the way we work and interact with employees and clients. It’s about unlocking the business models of the future and making an impact on clients’ businesses, industries and our society.”
But what’s cloud’s secret sauce? More than 15 years after those first smartphones, it’s still all about the data. She explains: “Cloud is the enabling layer that allows you to leverage your data in a way that you can deliver the right information, at the right time, in the right format, to the right person, so strategic decisions can be made.“
One of Dina’s past projects demonstrates cloud and AI’s game-changing powers. When upcoming regulatory changes around data privacy were looming, threatening one of her clients’ revenue streams, Dina and her team helped the client design, build and launch a highly secure and compliant cloud analytics platform that not only solved the client’s problem, but grew into a marketplace for companies facing similar issues.
As an 11-year old, she discovered her passion for technology and decided she wanted to become a telecommunications engineer. The fact she didn’t entirely understand what it was only made her more determined to explore the possibilities technology can bring. After achieving her masters in Telecoms Management, a globetrotting career ensued, first in the telecoms industry and later in consulting. What excites Dina about Deloitte is the powerful ecosystem of people, alliances, business and technical capabilities she can connect with, helping to drive innovation and identify solutions for clients’ challenges.
For young women on the cusp of a career in tech, she gives this advice: “It's important to have a vision about what you really want to do, certainly being passionate about it and to have a clear focus and perseverance to make this happen. Competence is gender neutral and it is up to each one of us women to understand our strengths, develop the needed skills, establish our credibility and focus on bringing our best self to the job we have chosen and having fun while at it.”
She adds: “Diversity of thinking is of utmost priority when you want to solve complex problems, because if you don't bring different kinds of people and different kinds of thoughts to the table, you're not really fostering innovation. Our society is diverse, our clients are diverse and our teams need to reflect this diversity in order to maximise the positive impact we can jointly make on the world.“
For Berta Izquierdo, cloud is a slam-dunk—and she’s looking forward to spreading the word to as many clients as she can.
“Cloud is the future. What’s exciting is that cloud is a new technology and if you look at the picture worldwide, only a few organisations have already migrated, so there's a huge demand out there,” Berta says. “It’s a challenge to help customers see the advantages and show them how it can improve their business. That really appeals to me.”
Prospective customers that are yet to be persuaded about cloud’s transformational power only need to witness Berta’s enthusiasm for delivering client satisfaction. “For me,” she says, ”happiness is the success of the customer.”
Berta is a cloud engineer on Deloitte Spain’s Cloud Managed Services team. She helps take clients from A to Z on the cloud migration journey, assessing their needs, proposing solutions, migrating their infrastructure and applications to the cloud and then operating and maintaining the system. She says: “We really need to understand their business and be in their shoes, to be able to create something for them that helps make their life easier and transforms their business.”
Her team’s innovative work for a life sciences company exemplifies the huge impact cloud can bring. The team set up a powerful cloud-based platform to help the client integrate the complex system of machines and computing devices they use to conduct medical and DNA analysis for a large pipeline of potential products. In another case, a real estate company that was skeptical about giving up its on-premise infrastructure was persuaded to put its faith in Berta’s team and now does its entire business in the cloud.
Following early encouragement from her teachers and parents to consider a technology career, she studied computer science and embarked on a career as a software engineer. But she became interested in a role with more variety and found herself applying for a job with a cloud services firm. “I got a job offer and I decided to move to cloud without really knowing exactly what it involved. But it was there that there I discovered how huge cloud was.” What Berta loved about the emerging field was the wide diversity of industries cloud could serve and the array of innovative solutions it enabled.
In conversations with clients, she emphasises cloud’s flexibility and pay-as-you-go benefits, which help organisations optimise their technology spending. She’s also an advocate for its scalability and adaptability to new features. “Many organisations are migrating to cloud, because they want to have their business more secure, more flexible and as available as possible.”
She believes multicloud is where the future is heading; a gradual evolution from clients using single cloud providers in favor of ecosystems of cloud services delivered by a variety of vendors. But whichever direction cloud goes, Berta is likely to be leading from the front. “There's a huge market here and it's growing every day,” she says. ”We’re receiving new demands on a daily basis, so we have a lot of work to do.”
Berta says that although men are more numerous in the technology field—she is at the moment the sole woman on her team, although actively seeking to increase that—she adds that Deloitte is diverse, welcoming and full of opportunities for women who want to work in cloud. “I would encourage all women wanting to work in cloud, or anything related to technology, to go for it—because if they are truly interested, they will love it.“
The era of discs and large desktops might be gone, but that reminds Jingjing, or Jing – as she prefers to be called – of the time when her parents recommended that she “learn the computer stuff.” She was young, around seven or eight years old, but that stoked an interest in technology that has turned into a passion over the years. Tapping into that passion, Jing made a career in technology by pursuing software engineering—where coding caught her interest the most because of its simplicity.
Jing joined Deloitte in 2020 as a cloud engineer—providing end-to-end solutions in running client’s managed cloud infrastructure, optimising application and data portfolios. In her last project, Jing helped her client to evaluate their customer experience with an Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based application for call center monitoring. According to Jing, machine learning and cloud are some of the most current trends in the industry and are truly instrumental in the way they are benefiting people’s lives.
Personally, contributing to successful client engagements makes her feel that she is making an impact both for Deloitte and for the clients as well. As a working parent, Jing feels it makes it easier to understand clients’ concerns and how to communicate with clients. Jing strongly believes in building trust with her clients to be successful in her role. “It’s a mutual way—I trust them, they trust me. That’s really the moment when I enjoy what I’m doing. And I really feel that I am helping Deloitte’s clients.”
Cloud, though, was completely a new beginning and a milestone for Jing’s career altogether. Before starting her career in cloud, she took nearly a four-year break in order to focus on her personal life – taking care of her family and raising a child – but the world around her changed too. “It was difficult for me to start in the same field in which I had my prior experience, as the technology is changing very fast and every day new things are coming up,” she reflects. Meanwhile, Jing had relocated to Australia, where a combination of extensive career opportunities in cloud and her passion for technology helped to reboot her career.
Working in cloud is fun for Jing, as different cloud providers with many different services lead to new challenges and learning opportunities every day. She says, “No matter how big or small the organisation is, we can find the most suitable solutions by utilising the cloud.” Jing also believes cloud is inevitable and the bonus comes in the form of its huge market demand. She encourages anyone who is interested to explore a career in cloud. “One doesn’t necessarily need to be a technologist to start a career in cloud. Working in cloud is not just a good start but an easy start as well”, recalling her start in cloud at Deloitte, where she received tremendous support and resources to nurture her growth. “I’m really good at what I’m doing”, she adds confidently.
She would love to have more women join her in the Deloitte Cloud Community –to continue to bring in the diversity of opinion that different genders bring to the table. Jing also strongly feels that sharing stories of women like her will inspire and encourage more women to join the cloud workforce and be a part of the cloud conversation.
If Jingjing’s story inspires you, join her at email@example.com to make a difference in cloud.
Don’t ask Jody McDermott why organisations need to attract more women to work in technology. Or rather, do ask: Her response is passionate.
“If I'm asked, ‘why do we need more women in tech?’, my answer is it's about time that we realised that shouldn't even be a question,” she says. “I love leveraging technology to solve business problems and I find that the more women that are at the table with me to help discuss issues, to help make decisions, it’s likely to drive better outcomes for our clients. I think it's a given that we need more diversity at the table in everything that we're doing, technology included.”
Jody is one of a growing number of female technology leaders in Deloitte Canada and heads its alliance with Google Cloud, working with about 20 clients to leverage the cloud hyperscaler’s solutions and drive business transformation across many industries.
Working in cloud puts her at the leading edge of innovation. She says: “Cloud is unleashing possibilities for our clients that just simply didn't exist in the past. For example, I'm working with one of my clients right now on a revamp and modernisation of their data and analytics strategy and capabilities—and what they want to do simply wouldn't be possible without the cloud.”
Jody recommends cloud not just for clients, but for aspiring consultants who are looking to make an impact. “Cloud is at the heart of everything happening,” she says. “If you want to be at the centre of growth for the next five to 10 years, cloud is the place to be and I can't think of anything more rewarding from a career growth perspective.
”After studying Business and French at university, Jody’s technology path began with a job at a small wireless startup, where she was thrown into the deep end, tackling advanced tasks such as automating a call center and building customer-facing websites. The pressure of learning on the job at such an early stage helped propel her career, but she also credits the mentorship of colleagues.
“My journey has really been one of never backing down from a challenge and having phenomenal leaders who bet on my potential where maybe I didn't even see my potential and stretching me outside of my comfort zone,” she says.
And with Jody’s journey having led her to consulting at Deloitte—a role she says is a “complete match”—there is one special perk above all: “When I get to come home and say that I work with Google on a daily basis, for a brief moment I have this window of being cool with my kids.”
About the time Nivashini was a student, the rising Information Technology age was making a lasting impact on both people's daily lives and on her mind. She went on to study technology at university and has spent most of her 20-year career in technology and business transformation consulting. Nivashini joined Deloitte South Africa in 2018 as a Director in the Digital Engineering practice. Around the same time, acting on the intuition that cloud could be the next leap in technology for many Deloitte clients, she started focusing on cloud-enabled business transformation.
What Nivashini finds fascinating is the fact that cloud may transform not only information technology but also entire businesses. “Going on a cloud journey is more than just a technology investment, it is rather a business transformation that an organisation embarks on. Organisations going on this journey should consider the impact on their people, processes, governance models and customers.” She observes that businesses that spent the past few years investing in cloud-based platforms and applications are now reaping the benefits.
The thing that Nivashini loves about her job is working with smart people, teams and clients—to create technological solutions to difficult challenges. In a recent project with a telecommunications client, her team developed a cloud-native digital portal that allowed for an integrated business marketing and customer engagement solution taking advantage of the speed and capacity of cloud – to increase the flexibility and capability of the go-to-market, on-demand infrastructure.
In her role as the Deloitte Africa Offerings Portfolio Leader for Core Business Operations, the Cloud Engineering Lead and the Lead Client Service Partner for Google Africa, Nivashini has helped Deloitte clients experience the power of the cloud – including forming cloud strategies, establishing cloud centers of excellence and building powerful solutions on cloud platforms. “Helping clients upfront to set up their cloud strategy, to make them understand the benefits and value that cloud can bring to their businesses and eventually helping them in their cloud journey” drives Nivashini’s success with Deloitte clients.
Nivashini believes not only that Deloitte embraces, but also that our clients and that individual careers require diversity. “I am able to bring that diversity that a cloud transformation journey needs because it's not only about technology—it's about people as much as it’s about processes.” Nivashini encourages aspiring young women to consider the array of choices in the cloud field. “My advice to someone interested in pursuing a career in cloud is to understand what part of the cloud journey they want to play in, what skills are required for them to develop in that area, what training they need and what value they can add.”
Join her at firstname.lastname@example.org to start your cloud career at Deloitte.
As technology devotees go, Amanda Perran is one-hundred-percent all-in. She waits with fervent anticipation for the next software releases in the same way music fans count the days to the latest album by their favorite band.
Her passion for computers and technology started at a young age under the influence of her father and really took hold when, as a Business undergrad in Newfoundland, Canada, she started dating a web designer, who—as well as going on to become her husband—introduced her to coding and programming.
“I’d spend my evenings and weekends in front of a computer screen learning everything I can, experimenting, building things with hardware, trying different operating systems,” Amanda says. “I just really loved that ability to solve problems and have the power to create things mysel and frankly, I couldn’t get enough.”
Today, as the national lead partner for Deloitte Canada’s Microsoft Technology Services practice, Amanda’s enthusiasm hasn’t waned one bit. After two decades as a specialist in Microsoft products—and having written books on the subject—her attention is now focused on helping clients transform their business on the cloud.
“What I really like about the cloud is, we are able to build solutions that not only change how a particular process works, but will really change how a business can run and how a business can serve its customers and their clients in a way that that really creates great experiences,” she says.
When she started out as woman in the technology field, Amanda was conscious of being a rarity, sometimes the only woman at the table and she had to deal with her fair share of “mansplaining.” She looks back and realises that she may have questioned her own abilities too much at the beginning. But now, as a respected leader in her field, she has come to Deloitte full of optimism about what women can bring to the table.
“When you look at the extensive nature of the cloud and what it’s capable of, it's sometimes easy to get lost,” Amanda says. “And I think that women have this ability to really zoom out and see the big picture, but also kind of come back in and bring everybody on board to the specific kind of activities and focus that we need. And I think a lot of that comes from our backgrounds and our innate capabilities of listening and fostering empathy and integrity. And it really drives a better culture.”
For those just starting out on the technology career path, Amanda’s journey demonstrates the power of passion and curiosity.
“I had this constant thirst and passion for learning … I couldn't wait to get my hands on the latest innovations in the latest releases of the platforms I was working on and I've really experimented and tried many different things through that. And it was that constant thirst for experimentation and innovation and change that really brought me to the path that I'm on now.”
And that passion is still with her: “I wake up every day and I'm excited. I'm excited because I love what I do and I love who I work with.”
In her cloud delivery work for major private-sector clients, Nysia Sewell has had a hand in many kinds of migrations and transformations. And while she’s laser focused on cloud as an enabler of business growth, she’s especially excited about what cloud-driven technologies can do for the social good and particularly sustainability.
Her ongoing interests include deploying geospatial technology in the cloud to empower consumer goods companies to make better global decisions about how to understand their impact on deforestation and decisions on ethical farming in the fight against the use of child labour.
In her 15 years with Deloitte, Nysia has seen the cloud grow from its origins as a source of off-premise computing power to its expanding role as the lynchpin of digital transformation. She’s helped deliver client success across myriad industries. One of her proudest moments was successfully helping set up a financial services company’s private cloud in the months just prior to an Olympic Games for which they were a major sponsor.
Customer satisfaction is what drives Nysia’s personal satisfaction. “My ambition is always to build out a ‘badge-less’ team, so we can leave the badges at the door, fully immerse ourselves in the client challenge and leave after a period of time with the client saying that they couldn't have done it without us,” she says. “I think that's the stuff that really excites me.”
Nysia’s career path started with a university degree in Business Information Technology, followed by a technical job helping build the communication systems of medium-orbit satellites. It was complex technical work—“but I very quickly realised that I can talk and encourage people faster than I can code and that led me into the sort of technology leadership roles that I’ve continued to do up to today.”
She points to her own experience at Deloitte as a case study in the positive shifts that have taken place for women in the technology field. Rather than the traditional term “working mom,” Nysia calls herself a “mom that works”; she takes advantage of Deloitte’s flexible working arrangements to devote quality time to children’s birthday parties, school events and extended summer time off. “And then,” she adds, “I quickly switch back into being able to talk to the C-suite about their cloud transformation journeys. And I think that being able to feel successful in my home life, as well as my work life and striking that balance certainly shows how Deloitte is striving hard to support women in the firm.”
Those cloud transformation journeys, though often long, are full of possibilities, Nysia says. “A lot of my clients at the moment are looking at how they're harnessing the power of their data in one platform, what that can do and what insights that can bring. But I think there’s still a way to go for a number of our clients to truly get to what we call into a cloud 3.0—which is really treating their IT as a service going forward and as an enabler for true scale end-to-end business transformation.”
Part of the cloud’s magic is that it can run an organisation’s most important functions from anywhere in the world. And by the same token, you can build it from almost anywhere too.
This is where Amita Shanbhogue comes in. From her desk in Bengaluru, India, she’s at the heart of the global engine that runs 24/7 to deliver innovative new cloud capabilities for some of Deloitte’s biggest clients.
Amita leads cloud strategy in the US firm’s India operations and plays a vital role in the Global Delivery Network, which provides always-on capabilities and support for client projects, no matter what time it is on the 24-hour clock. It’s a perfect perch from which to view the tidal wave of cloud adoption at organisations around the world.
“Cloud is at the epicenter of a lot of technology changes happening across organisations. It’s critical to their success because it helps them focus on innovation as well leading-edge technologies in the market,” Amita says. “Part of an organisation starting off their cloud journey is identifying what kind of strategies they want to adopt and that's primarily where we come in—helping to identify the key areas, cost-effectiveness and other synergies that are needed.“
She cites a recent large-scale project for a major financial institution that wanted to augment its cloud presence by building a public cloud capability. Amita’s team has been involved from the start, helping set the strategy, create the technology business case, assess the required cloud applications, stand up a central team to manage the workstreams, work with the major cloud providers and oversee the migration process.
Technology intrigued Amita from an early age, as she was surrounded by a lot of male family members, including her father, who worked in tech or engineering. She says she was determined to show that a woman could also have a successful career in the field and she joined Deloitte more than 12 years ago after completing a masters in Business and Engineering. After cutting her teeth in large scale IT infrastructure projects, she gained a specialty in IT transformation for financial services clients before transitioning to her current cloud role.
She sees her leadership role in such a pivotal area of Deloitte’s cloud practice as evidence of the opportunities open to aspiring female technology professionals. “A few years back you didn't see as many women in engineering or technology, but I think that's changing now,” Amita says, adding that it’s a trend she wants to help grow. “For me as a leader, a primary objective is to share my experiences, the knowledge that I've gained over the span of 12 years. I want to provide help and be a good mentor, similar to how I've had some great mentors, both men and women.”