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Deloitte Women in Cloud

Fresh perspectives on some of the world’s big challenges

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.



Our Women in Cloud and Technology campaign aims to spotlight some of Deloitte’s women who are working with some of the leading African organisations in their Cloud and Technology transformation.

We are sharing stories of 11 inspiring women who are creating magic through their work in Deloitte Africa’s Cloud and Technology domains. These women from diverse backgrounds, career stages and different African countries all share a common passion for their work and for the importance of gender diversity in the technology domain.

Linda Khumalo, one of our featured Women in Cloud and Technology, says the future of Cloud can be summed up perfectly by Arthur C. Clarke’s quote: “Any sufficiently advanced technology cannot be distinguished from magic.” According to her Deloitte has a critical role to play. “Our InfinityX graduate internship programme offers opportunities to women graduates in Engineering, Computer Science and Financial Management, where we bring individuals into the organisation and train them on Cloud and Technology and help them solve complex business problems.”

Bhavya Dayaljee, another of our featured Women in Cloud and Technology adds: “Representation matters. Upcoming women talent in Cloud and Technology space need to see other women like them that are successful in their careers. Gender continues to create uneven outcomes for women of all races, which is especially noticeable in the underrepresentation of women employed in professional occupations across the African continent.”

Please enjoy all 11 stories of our extraordinary Deloitte Africa Women in Cloud and Technology. We also encourage you to inquire about Deloitte’s Cloud and Technology career opportunities and understand more about the work we are doing for leading organisations across Africa.

Arun Babu - Managing Director - Deloitte Consulting Africa

Meet our Women in Cloud

I am a Director at Deloitte and currently lead the CBO Practice for Consulting Africa, which includes the Digital Engineering Practice for Deloitte Africa which covers Transformation Management, Systems Engineering and Integration, Cloud Engineering, Data Science and Data Engineering.  I have over 18 years’ experience in consulting, with a focus on complex technology delivery. I am building a digital engineering practice with a focus on building capabilities around Analytics in the Cloud, Cloud Native development, DevOps, Integration, Application Modernization and Cloud Migration.  I completed an MBA at Henley Business School, with her thesis based on ‘The Role of Leadership in Driving Digital Technology Innovation in Large South African Organisations.

Cloud is an essential requirement for a business: many businesses have spent the past few years investing in cloud-based platforms and applications to help with the digital transformation of their business, and those that have invested ahead of the curve are now seeing the benefit that cloud can bring for their Organisation.  In many ways, the coronavirus outbreak has been the catalyst for the biggest ever beta test for a technology platform – and cloud computing has risen to the challenge. Executives that might have previously doubted the value of an investment in on-demand IT will have seen how cloud has supported remote working and are now convinced of the benefits. 

Going on a cloud journey is more than just a technology investment, it is a rather a business transformation that an Organisation embarks on.  Organisation going on this journey have to consider the impacts on their people, processes, governance models and customers.   Thinking of it as a business transformation will ensure that cloud journeys are successful and will allow Organisations to reap the full benefit of the investment that it will make.   That being the said the benefits that a cloud journey can bring is immense for any Organisation and can pivot a business into the future.

At Deloitte, we have a strong focus on helping our clients drive their cloud journeys, we are also excited by the number of women that we have in cloud practice that are constantly developing skills in cloud computing and are becoming experts in this field.  Supporting these future leaders are core to our DNA.


I am a Senior Manager in Deloitte Consulting’s Cloud Engineering practice in Africa. I support clients with complex IT transformations as an enabler of business growth.  Being part of the cloud practice allows me the opportunity to be part of innovative and leading technologies. Cloud is of strategic importance to our firm and by enabling our clients to benefit from its capabilities and services, I believe we can make an impact that matters for our clients.

I am inspired by technology and the ways in which it is changing the world and for me Cloud is the next technology revolution, impacting client’s businesses, industries, and society.  Cloud has already changed our everyday world, from streaming movies, series, books to the ability to access our data from anywhere, to customised online shopping, social media, and browsing experiences, to enabling us to work from home during one of the most unprecedented times in our history.  Cloud keeps us, connected, to each other and the world and everything that happens around us. 

Cloud is of strategic importance to our firm as we see the transformation and growth capabilities is possesses for us, for our clients and our society.  Most businesses are using Cloud these days for varied use cases.  I believe that Cloud will change to business tech and impact every industry healthcare, manufacturing, education, and gaming through the benefits it can provide to organisations.

When Apple first launched it’s supposed comprehensive health tracking app in 2014 it was heavily criticised for not including a period/reproductive health metric in the app.  They basically overlooked a key function that roughly half the world would have expected to see.  This is a perfect example of how not having the right gender balance can actually impact innovations and technology developments.  They eventually included this functionality into the app a year or two later and the health app now contains reference data points that relate to period tracking, menstrual flow’s amount (light, medium, heavy), possible ovulation too.   I await the day SIRI informs me to head to the pharmacy to stock up on sanitary wear. 

The world is woken up to the imperative that diversity and inclusion is a key consideration in every organisation and while we have raised awareness of the challenges women in tech face, we have a long way to go before we can confidently say we truly support female leaders in the space.  There are opportunities to change our thinking in every life stage of a female – from getting rid of the pinkification of girls, to doing away with boys vs girls toys, to encouraging girls to take one STEAM in schools, to having female tech mentors, to benefits geared towards mums in tech, aiding in work life integration, sponsorship, recognising and unlearning gender bias to equal growth and leadership opportunities.

As someone who took a break from a tech consulting my advice for all women in tech would be to stay the course.  Find a mentor who you aspire to be like to help you navigate this journey.  Tech is an exciting space to be in, not only because of the innovation and impact but because it needs women to make sure that it changes the world for us all not just half the population.

Going all in on our Diversity and Inclusion commitments is part of our Global Strategy.  To support this various programs and initiatives have been launched. 

Launched in 2016, Deloitte’s Encore program has helped more than 51 experienced women relaunch their technology career after being out of the workforce for at least two years.

Deloitte’s Women in Tech program is informed by data insights, which drive our actions - a host of recruiting and retention approaches targeted to women in tech—from expanding Encore and other hire-to-train or train-to-hire programs, to launching innovative mentorship programs and other strategies that have been proven to work

Women in Cyber, Women in Cloud initiatives that showcase women talent that are trailblazing the tech landscape in those specific domains.  Raises awareness of the impact women are making, illustrates Deloitte’s commitment to Diversity as it attests to how the organisation has provided women with opportunities for growth and leadership.

In our everyday, Deloittians through the people centric culture support women in tech and especially in Cloud.  It’s the everyday support, empathy and understanding that also goes a long way.  It’s also assisting women that experience challenges by stepping in.

I stumbled into Cloud.  I come from a technology strategy and business architectural consulting background with programme management experience in leading large transformational IT projects.  When I was asked to support a client in the ER&I sector with the planning around a Cloud migration project I could not say no, even though I felt like I knew nothing about Cloud.  Shortly after when I was offered the opportunity to join the Cloud practice, it felt like a calling as I could marry my technology passion with a speciality that I always believed was innovative and ever pervasive.  I am now also the consulting lead for our MS Azure practice.  This is an exciting space for and an opportunity for me to build a business and practice. 


I must say, I never thought that in a million years I would advance in a career in the Information Technology space. Actually, I didn’t know much about technology except for the typewriting lesson I did in grade 8 (not a very exciting lesson may I add).

I grew up thinking that I would become a primary school teacher or a child psychologist. This was because as a girl child that is what I was exposed to. This was my thinking, up until I changed schools in Grade 9. I was introduced to Computers in Grade 9 as a subject (and not giving away my age, but floppy disks were key, and I loved that they came in different colours at that). Due to the love, I had for computers, I then later advanced to picking Computer Science as a subject in Grade 10, which later led to me being the top student in that subject and achieving my only distinction was in that subject in Matric.

Come to think about my floppy disks and USB’s that I lost with assignments. It makes me very excited to be in the Cloud space. It shows how far technology really has come. My first interaction was when I could work on assignments at school save them “in the Cloud”(without having to worry about losing my work) and then continuing with my work when I would get home, not being weighed down by my work being saved on a USB. That was my first interaction with Cloud and I thought that was so ingenious.

Fast forward to when I started working. I was in a team that not only solutioned for DevOps best practices in teams but also looked after the Devops tooling stack. For Devops to be instilled the process required sending through specifications to have a Virtual Machine to be configured a certain way.

This would sometimes take long as the servers would be full and new servers had to be ordered for the company at hand to be able to scale. Weeks (sometimes months later) you would receive your Virtual Machine with the requested specifications and if you were luckily it would be properly configured, and you would be able to SSH into the VM and configure it accordingly.

This was never the case and would be a constant back and forth between the Developers, Networks team and Ops Team. Having lived and worked through that ordeal, the implementation of Cloud greatly solves for this. It even goes further in that I don’t have to worry about the configuration of certain applications before I can deploy a certain product to production.

Thank goodness for cloud as weeks and months of work now takes minutes. With more time on my hands due to less trouble shooting of VMs thanks to cloud, I am able to learn new skills like application development thanks to the Cloud SaaS (Software as a Service) solutions.

Not forgetting the use of serverless computing, this totally changes the game. Having to write functions and not have to worry about the servers…I mean with all these Cloud developments how can one not be super excited about Cloud?


Having grown up in the technology OEM that created the mainframe, I have seen - from a business lens large-scale public sector and financial services clients - a real transformation take place across the technology landscape, people and culture and business models.

From those who had previously adopted large scale service-oriented architecture and made massive capital outlays for infrastructure to the same organisations efficiently leveraging the Cloud with immediate service improvements and tailored billing, without the need to even engage with their IT counterparts. This contrast somewhat indicates the transformation of business that Cloud has enabled in the last 10 years that my career has spanned in the technology industry.

“Besides teaching online yoga since the pandemic that the power of the Cloud allows me to reach students across the globe, professionally, what I love most about having stumbled into this industry by chance, having been a part of the 2011 intakes of IBM finance and business graduates into a previously technology focused program, is that this industry is where it is all happening.

The fast-paced nature keeps you on your toes and the opportunity to constantly evolve your skill set and conversations with clients is what I find exhilarating. In my role in sales and new business development for Cloud, being at the intersection of technology and business, understanding the trade off’s clients need to make across innovation, competitiveness and cost amidst changing technology and mindset shifts and striking a balance amongst it all is most interesting as this is not an easy juggle.”

This is why involving more female leaders in these roles becomes so critical as we bring a different perspective and approach to the challenge but at the same time the ever-changing nature of this industry steers women away from participating as it is very male dominated and one does need sponsorship in high profile transformation projects as such. This is an integral component to ensuring women are successful.

Personally, I have just recently returned to work after becoming a mum and I compared my experience of parenthood to the Cloud-based on the stark similarities (for laughs):

  • It's always on, (literally)
  • It's secure (as the parents are the only security your baby knows),
  • It's reliable, (baby cries, someone jumps),
  • It enhances collaboration (with the village it takes to raise a child) and
  • It increases productivity (as parents become real life superheroes with the number of items they have to manage between their home and work lives)


Technology and the rate at which it advances, has always amazed me.  With it comes great opportunity, but also potential confusion and risk.  Many organisations are battling to keep up and understand which technologies are relevant to them and how they can leverage these—while not diminishing or writing-off the significant investments they might have made in the past.  In my role as the Technology Strategy and Transformation lead for Deloitte Africa—it is my passion to advise and support our clients in making the right technology choices, with a focus on business value as well as employee and customer experience.

I have been fortunate in having a career that entailed delivering a wide range of different Technology solutions and services.  Starting off as a programmer and business analyst, creating custom developed solutions taught me the importance of truly understanding business requirements and designing solutions that are reliable, secure and easy to use.  What excites me about the Cloud and SaaS (Software as a Service) platforms, is the speed to value—it is now so much faster and easier to configure and enable leading practise processes across the enterprise. Gone are the days of complex, highly customised and long technology implementations. Clients are now expecting an agile delivery approach with business value, delivered in a shorter time and more frequently.  Cloud is at the forefront of enabling this.

I studied B.Sc. Information Technology and was one of a very few women who chose a career in technology or engineering at that time.  In the beginning it was tough—as I was often the only female in the room, initially it felt like I needed “prove” myself.  But my passion for my work and the confidence in my own abilities, allowed me to overcome this and thrive in my career.

It is heartening to see the increased number of female professionals with Technology or Engineering related qualifications in the market.  I do believe more can be done to educate our youth, regarding the options available to them, and give them practical exposure to Technology-related careers. Technology is now embedded in everything we do and is an essential element of any job or career. As such, I hope to see an increased inclusion of relevant Technology modules in most degrees and diplomas.

The career options are endless, catering for those that are analytical and logical in their thinking—to those that have a desire to be creatives and designers. I believe that irrespective of what you studied, you can build a career in Technology or Cloud. It is all about your attitude and willingness to learn. If you are passionate about solving business problems and have an aptitude for learning and taking on current information, you can excel.

This agility and constant learning are the drivers of my energy—every day comes with new challenges and learnings. I also love helping our clients deal with this constant change, guiding them into making the right decisions, that allow their organisations to grow—and adding value to their employees and customers. It is fulfilling—and I cannot imagine doing anything else.


I fell into the work I do through a series of happy coincidences. My journey began in high school with a Google search on possible careers in science. Within a few clicks, I knew that I wanted to study Electrical and Electronic Engineering.

From then onwards fate, luck, hard work and split-second decisions conspired to lead me down a path wherein I discovered a love for programming, applied for a Data Science internship, enrolled for a Master’s in Natural Language Processing and landed a first job doing Data Science and Machine Learning at a research institution.

Further along that path, joining Deloitte meant being exposed to different projects and clients at varying stages of digital maturity. Many of whom are now pivoting to cloud solutions to handle large data volumes and to service their highly customised and complex data science needs. Therefore, my work has evolved into doing Machine Learning, Data Science and Data Architecture in the Cloud. I have no doubt that my career journey will keep leading me down ever-changing, highly challenging and infinitely rewarding paths.

Being in Tech is all about solving a diverse range of problems and challenges across various industries. Institutions in sectors such as Healthcare, Mining, Media, Education, and Transportation sectors are rapidly digitising, resulting in highly collaborative and deeply impactful work. 

The underlying assumptions, targets, goals, locales, and applications differ for every problem therefore there is never a one-size fits all solution. Each unique solution is formulated via a combination of existing and novel components to maximise the benefits while minimising the resources consumed.

Working in Tech allows me to bring creativity, ingenuity, and improvisation to every project, whilst working with extremely talented and passionate people.

I think the future of Tech can be summed up perfectly by the Arthur C. Clarke’s quote, “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic”.

To me, that means the future of Cloud and Tech is ensuring that it is ubiquitous, invisible, cheap, and democratised. As an industry, we need to be constantly developing and implementing solutions that are scalable, sustainable, and universal.

We must aim to use the considerable influence and power of tech to solve many of humankind’s challenges, such as climate change, deforestation, poverty, and inequality. However, for tech to truly metamorphose into magic, we should strive to continuously enrich the quality of life starting with the simple pleasures in life like music, art, or sport. 

With women being more than half of the world’s population, it is a no-brainer that female leaders in Tech should also be similarly represented and celebrated. The importance of diversity of thought, ideas and world views in decision making spaces cannot be overstated. Although, significant strides have been made in increasing the number of female leaders in Tech, parity is still a pipedream.

We need solutions that recognise that women exist in a society that automatically saddles them with roles such as being primary caregivers to performing the larger share of emotional labour and household responsibilities. This means that typical leader selection processes such as promotions, salary increases, and outputs should be structured in a manner that does not accidentally penalise women for wearing multiple hats. 

Deloitte has various initiatives, tools, resources, and people that work hard to significantly empower women at all rungs of the ladder. The existence of parity targets hints at the continued dedication to women empowerment in the future. Deloitte is also uniquely positioned to effect even more change in the wider community, by ensuring that the client and project decisions we undertake consistently empower female leaders in tech.


What excites me about Cloud and Technology is the way Cloud/ Digital Transformation drives true value and change for our clients, especially when it is driven through the lens of business transformation rather than tech implementation. To optimise the true benefits of Cloud journey, we need to apply the lens of how it will empower our people to deliver value for our business. This means we help clients re-think how they will deliver value—through their current operating model and what skills will be needed to embed their Cloud journey.

Above all, what does the business transformation journey mean for the rest of the organisation, that is, how do we bring change management to guide the rest of organisation in the Cloud adoption journey? This way we enable, new ways of work not only in technology but for the rest of the organisation and quickly realise value through the new technologies.

The future of Cloud / Tech, leveraging new technologies to advance business objectives, will continue being a priority for many businesses. The flexibility and scalability that Cloud offers, will continue to provide businesses with competitive edge—in the uncertain and ever evolving business landscape we operate in. This however, will have to be done within the boundaries of secure environment, considering the Cyber security challenges that come with Cloud transformation

Our female leader’s roles within the Cloud and Technology space are very simple; for every Cloud project, take one or two young female colleagues for exposure—whilst providing them with necessary training in the background to embed their experience.

As Deloitte, we have to be intentional on how we empower female leaders to navigate their journey, especially in the world of IT, that has always been male dominated.

My own personal growth story within the Cloud / Tech space has been a non-traditional part, yet an interesting one. It started with a role in Human Capital, where we always provided “Strategic Change Management” support, to assist clients to embed their tech implementation journey. Therefore, in enabling the tech adoption journey, one had to understand the technology landscape including Cloud. As a result, I had to learn new skills and where possible acquire certification. The recent addition to my Cloud and Tech skills is the Sales Force accreditation of which I am so proud of.


I entered the working world armed with an Industrial Engineering degree and found her niche in the space between Business and Tech.  Over the span of my career, I worked both within Business and in IT, and learnt that it is a skill to translate the conversations between business and tech, and through honing this skill, sustainable business solutions can be built and implemented.

Over the years, we have all seen that technological advancements continue to push business agendas. Similarly, organisations and enterprises continue to demand more from technology. There is always a consistent flow of opportunities to think innovatively about driving the convergence between these two worlds.

My specific area of expertise as Business Engineering, an inter-disciplinary field of engineering through which a variety of complex business problems are solved through developing integrated, organisation-wide solutions across People, Process and Technology. This field leverages business domains such as Operating Model Design, Business Process Engineering and Automation, Business Process Management, Business Architecture, and enables easy integration with Tech domains such as Enterprise Architecture, Cloud, SDLC, and so forth.

In my spare time, I am a guest lecturer and external examiner at the University of Pretoria, in the subjects of Enterprise Architecture (Honour’s Level) and Business Engineering (Bachelor’s level) – since 2007. I think as Industrial engineers, we are uniquely trained and qualified to facilitate the conversation and integration between Business and Tech, and it is a space that we should be claiming more aggressively. We are trained to approach problem solving in a holistic and structured manner and are skilled to find the balance across People – Process – Technology when building solutions that sustainably solves business problems.

I feel that my success in the space between business and tech is built on years of experience in cross-functional, cross-industry projects. Through this, I’ve built a strong understanding of how businesses operate and how to craft business solutions. I predominantly work on large-scale projects, ranging from business transformation through to major technology implementations. I participate in and lead the business model-level design, as the Project Manager; Lead Process Engineer / Architect; Operating Model and Process Engineering Subject Matter Expert.

Having joined Deloitte in October 2019, following on from a career in working in both consulting and industry, I enjoy consulting as it allows me to work at any level in an organisation, and not be limited by organisational boundaries. It also provides me the opportunity to work with similarly minded people who constantly push her potential. I remember starting out as a young engineer, often being the only female on projects. It is exciting to see – both through my work and interactions with the university – that more female engineers are entering this field. I am excited about seeing further diversity in this field in future, as it will deliver richer business solutions.


Cloud is fast changing how we do things in the workplace and the way we do business. We have reached an era where the understanding of Technology and its impact has become a part of our daily lives. Cloud Technology provides a new angle for a workforce—since information can be accessed anywhere, anytime.

Cloud enables businesses to focus on key areas such as growth, profitability, productivity and innovation and that excites me—as we can see the relevance of Cloud in our day-to-day lives.

Cloud Computing infrastructure is the backbone of the delivery pipeline of about every digital service, ranging from social media, streaming entertainment to IOT infrastructure. Ultra-fast networks like 5G and Wi-fi 6E doesn’t only imply more data being streamed from the cloud, it also means new types of data can be streamed.

With the rise of platforms such as Amazon, Luna and Google Stadia and most of the “everyday” AI we see all around us—from Google search to Instagram filters, lives in the cloud and the technology that routes traffic from data centres to our devices and manages storage infrastructure is built on machine learning.

Cloud Technology makes every other technology lighter, faster and more accessible from a customer point of view—the key driver being migration of more services to the cloud. The rise of serverless cloud will have a big part to play in the broader trend across Cloud and the entire technical landscape of creating new user experiences that make innovation more accessible.

Over the past couple of years, there has been many female leaders in Cloud leadership initiatives, but many studies indicate that good intentions are not “good enough”, as the number of women in Technology has not increased substantially.

IBM conducted a study which indicated that many organizations continue to pursue gender equity and diversity using broad-based programs that don’t address the underlying mindsets and lack a measurable path to value. Some of the key barriers for women that still needs to be addressed are old stereotypes, fewer connections, bias and discrimination and lack of flexibility.

Women in very senior positions face unspoken challenges daily. For them, getting recognition for the position, being heard in meetings, being themselves without changing for the entity is the most important achievement. However, despite all the defiance, women in Cloud/Tech lead as pioneers, who are chosen because they have a unique lens and will continue making a difference within society.

My advice to all women, continue making a difference in your area of expertise. Even though you might feel that at times you are not valued—you are certainly empowering yourself and making a difference to colleagues and society as a whole.  

Coming from a B.Com (Finance) degree background, I started my career within the technology space as an IT Business Analyst after discovering that business analysis was a strong competency. Technology always fascinated me, and hence I thought IT business analysis was a good combination.

Always thinking of new challenges and advancing technologies, I have worn many hats in my career within the technology space ranging from Business Analysis, System Analyst, Technical Specialist, Cloud Strategy Consultant, Business Development consultant to name a few—with most of my industry experience within the Retail and Telecommunications  space.

After completing my MBA, I started my Cloud journey in 2019, where I was responsible for driving and formulating the Cloud value proposition and go-to-market strategy across the organisation.

Transitioning from traditional IT to Cloud, came with its own challenges and pressures. Examples include having to rapidly upskill and educate both customers and internal members of the team and

additional efforts in ensuring all objectives are met was certainly part and parcel of the journey.

Starting at Deloitte in October 2021 as a Manager within the Cloud Engineering portfolio, I feel privileged to be part of a team where—I am currently playing a lead role on one of the largest Cloud projects. The team collaboration, energy and willingness to share knowledge and expertise has enabled me to easily transition and take on roles that are outside of my area of expertise.

The leadership has supported me on this key engagement for the past 6 months and ensured that—I have the required resources and leadership support to ensure that I am able to meet my objectives.

I am excited to be part of the growth and development of the Cloud Engineering team and to support and empower women to achieve their career aspirations. The Cloud Engineering team is currently looking at initiatives and support structures to support women within Cloud. Deloitte is certainly investing within the cloud space and playing a pivotal role in empowering female leaders.