The National ICT Association of Malaysia (PIKOM) had several items on its agenda on 23 November 2017: it held the ninth PIKOM Leadership Summit, signed three Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) and released its annual ICT Strategic Review 2017/2018.
The Leadership Summit was aimed at creating awareness among chief information and executive officers of corporations on the latest developments in digital transformation and provide case studies to inspire them to embrace technology more vigorously.
PIKOM signed an MoU with Fusionex to train and equip ICT professionals on big data analytics through the PIKOM Academy. Fusionex will curate and run courses based on the members’ requirements and schedules. Fusionex CEO and the summit organising chairman Dato’ Seri Ivan Teh said there is a gap between SMEs and their desire to go online. “They want to do online business but do not know what to do or where to start. We want to handhold them, give them the knowledge and resources to level up,” he said.
Furthermore, the ICT industry is in need of professionals with the right skills and training. “The current education system stressed memorising and theoretical knowledge. However, this is too foundational. They lack training in analytical thinking, asking questions like why, how, and what if? We have a big talent pool in the country that needs to be developed,” said Teh.
PIKOM also signed an MoU with Cybersecurity Malaysia to enhance collaboration between the latter and PIKOM’s Cybersecurity Chapter. They will jointly work to increase awareness of cybersecurity among corporations and individual users. PIKOM added that this relationship will also bridge the gap between the government and consumers in their roles, objectives and policy-making.
PIKOM signed a third MoU with the Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) to help the travel industry adopt the digital platform. “We can help travel agents get online and show them how they can promote their products and services, such as creating targeted campaigns to foreigners and for certain destinations,” said outgoing PIKOM chairman, Chin Chee Seong. “They can use big data analytics to gain insights into the best way to market their products.”
Through the MoU, PIKOM also hopes to increase MATTA members’ participation in the next MYCYBERSALE campaign. “Malaysia Airlines participated in our last campaign. It was one of our biggest export merchants,” Chin noted.
PIKOM launched its ICT Strategic Review 2017/2018, comprising 11 chapters and a special section on cybersecurity. PIKOM research committee chair Woon Tai Hai said the convergence of the physical and digital environments has resulted in disruptions in business models, consumer behaviours, devices and the replacements of traditional jobs, in some instances.
Woon added that Malaysia’s sterling economic performance in the past few quarters has led PIKOM to revise its GDP growth forecast for 2017 to hit a whopping 5.3%. However, this will moderate to 4.8-5.0% in 2018 and 4.5-4.8% in 2019. The ICT industry’s contribution to GDP in 2016 was RM224bn with a growth rate of 18.2% year-on-year. PIKOM is hopeful the government’s targeted 20% for 2020 will be achieved ahead of schedule in 2017.
At the summit, PIKOM also donated RM40,000 to the Malaysia Red Crescent Society in aid of the Penang Flood Relief. This sum was among the funds PIKOM raised at its charity golf event and corporate sponsor Fusionex matched the amount raised ringgit-for-ringgit.