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Jino Noel is a data science and technology leader with extensive experience in building data teams and practices across different organizations. His experience ranges from working in startups to large conglomerates across both Australia and the Philippines. At the time of this interview, he was the Chief Data Officer at Data Analytics Ventures, Inc. (DAVI). Currently, he is the Chief Data Officer at Angkas.
What are the key skills that a Chief Data Officer should possess nowadays?
A Chief Data Officer should have both data-related technical expertise as well as people leadership skills. Leading will always be part of the job, particularly for highly specialized technical people such as data engineers and data scientists. To be able to lead them properly, I believe it is better to be a technical person myself, so I can discuss technical matters fluently, which helps me gain their trust.
What data-related challenges have you faced as the Chief Data Officer of DAVI? How did you overcome these challenges?
Our data-related challenges are the same as any company. Being able to trust our data, cleaning up data from our sources, data latencies, and other related issues. DAVI overcame these by investing in people—hiring high-quality experts in our data engineering, data governance, and analytics teams to help us make sense of the data coming in—and building robust data pipelines that have increased the standard of quality of the data in our data lake.
How does DAVI make use of advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to help its clients understand their customers’ needs and buying patterns?
DAVI has recently started using machine learning to model our users’ propensity to buy certain products. This helps us create more accurate target audiences for our precision marketing campaigns. We are also moving forward with a recommendation engine project, with the goal of improving user engagement with our retail partners and with our promos and campaigns. On top of this, we are improving our machine learning operations expertise to make our model deployments repeatable and robust.
In the digital marketplace, data analytics acts as a guiding compass for app developers, enabling the creation of personalized, high-performing applications that align with user preferences. By leveraging data, developers can understand nuanced user behaviors and preferences, allowing them to tailor apps to meet specific user needs and aspirations.
Dive deeper into these discussions by reading Jino Noel’s full interview with The KPI Institute. Download the free digital copy of PERFORMANCE Magazine Issue No. 26, 2023 – Data Analytics on the TKI Marketplace. You can also purchase a physical copy via Amazon.
Alfonso Medela is the Chief Artificial Intelligence (AI) Officer at Legit.Health, where he oversees the use of advanced computer vision algorithms. A renowned expert in few-shot learning and medical imaging, his contributions include developing an algorithm capable of diagnosing over 232 skin conditions.
What are the key skills that a Chief AI Officer should possess in the context of your role at Legit.Health?
A Chief AI Officer at a medical organization like Legit.Health needs strong AI expertise, including extensive knowledge of machine and deep learning, and a profound understanding of medical data and healthcare to ensure precise algorithm development. Besides technical skills, strategic thinking and leadership are vital for guiding the AI team and aligning with company goals. Great communication and collaboration skills are also crucial for working effectively with different teams.
Can you describe your experience in developing and implementing AI strategies for computer vision applications, specifically in the context of diagnosing and treating skin pathologies? How have you leveraged AI to improve diagnosis accuracy and enable life-saving therapies?
Heading a team of specialists, we’ve developed advanced algorithms that accurately identify over 232 skin conditions and automate follow-ups for chronic skin conditions. Using deep learning techniques, our platform provides real-time diagnostic support to healthcare professionals, improving their accuracy and enabling early intervention. By collaborating with medical experts and continuously refining our algorithms, we are able to offer a powerful tool that empowers clinicians, transforming healthcare and improving patient outcomes.
What approaches or methodologies do you use to ensure the accuracy and reliability of computer vision algorithms in the context of skin pathology diagnosis? Can you share examples of how you have validated the performance of AI models and ensured their safety and effectiveness in real-world clinical settings?
To guarantee accuracy and reliability, our computer vision algorithms undergo a multi-stage validation process that encompasses retrospective and prospective clinical validations. Rigorous testing is performed on diverse, representative datasets, employing cross-validation to assess model performance. We collaborate closely with medical professionals, reviewing AI model outputs and gathering feedback to iteratively refine our algorithms. Furthermore, we conduct clinical trials and pilot studies to evaluate safety and efficacy. This ensures that our models adhere to real-world requirements and actively contribute to enhancing patient outcomes.
AI stands as one of the most transformative technologies of the modern era, revolutionizing the way people approach complex problems across various fields. From enhancing healthcare diagnostics to driving advancements in autonomous vehicles, AI’s potential is vast and continually expanding.
To explore the full spectrum of Alfonso Medela’s pioneering work in AI and to stay updated with the latest industry insights, read his full interview exclusively featured in the PERFORMANCE Magazine Issue No 26, 2023 – Data Analytics edition. Download your free copy now through the TKI Marketplace or purchase a printed copy from Amazon.
Raed Abdullah Alsuhaibani, General Manager of Strategic Performance Management at the Ministry of Human Resource and Social Development (MHRSD) in Saudi Arabia, draws on his 17 years of experience in both the private and public sectors, with some of these years dedicated to navigating the ever-shifting currents of strategy and performance management within government. He describes himself as an ambitious and results-oriented individual with a track record in strategy execution, performance management, and business support.
In this interview with Performance Magazine, Alsuhaibani shares his insights and experiences in the public sector, where he steers the ship of strategy execution and alignment in accordance with Saudi Vision 2030.
Would you tell us more about your educational and professional background? How did your previous experiences lead you to your current position?
I am an Industrial Engineer with a bachelor’s degree from King Saud University and a master’s degree in Business Administration from Eastern Michigan University, United States. Working in the private sector, especially in one of the model environments, Advanced Electronics Company (now Saudi Arabian Military Industries or SAMI), and two other major companies, namely AlRajhi Bank and Saudi Arabia’s Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC), allowed me to explore and discover many business aspects that enhanced my skills and experience. In 2021, I decided it was time to utilize my experiences and participate in achieving our ambitious Vision 2030 through my current position.
What are your main responsibilities and goals in your current role?
My current responsibilities involve overseeing the execution of the ministry’s strategies, with the primary goal of maximizing the kingdom’s economic and societal value through alignment and synergy.
Please take us through your daily job routine. Could you describe in detail your activities and work hours? You may specify certain areas of your job, such as your work arrangement (remote, on-site, or hybrid) and the stakeholders you frequently contact or meet with.
My daily job routine consists of measuring and managing the performance of our strategy execution and working on alignment with all stakeholders. Being responsible for performance management, we commonly work on enhancing measures and solving data-related issues. Working in a large organization like the MHRSD allows one to align and work with a large community of stakeholders within and outside of the ministry. Thus, this takes a big chunk of the time.
Do you think that strategy and performance management in the public sector is different from that in the private sector? How so?
One key distinction between strategy and performance management in these sectors lies in their expected outcomes. The private sector is primarily driven by maximizing shareholder value, typically marked by measuring profit or return on investment (ROI). On the other hand, the public sector places a greater emphasis on working with a diverse range of stakeholders, i.e. the general public as well as companies in the private sector. However, if we talk about adopting methodologies and frameworks to manage performance, I see that the gap is minimal. I was amazed by the significant transformation in the public sector when I joined first in 2021. So, I believe that in some public organizations, the practices are generally more mature than in private ones.
What are the main achievements you are proud of thus far during your time working in strategy and performance management in the public sector?
I have had the privilege of collaborating with amazing teams that possess diverse skill sets at different levels. This collaboration has been instrumental in achieving our goals. Some of our main accomplishments include establishing effective strategy and performance management practices within the MHRSD, playing a facilitative role in developing various subsidiary strategies while offering technical expertise, and garnering top national awards for excellence in strategy, performance, and project management office (PMO) practices.
What are the main challenges that you face working in strategy and performance management in the public sector? How do you overcome such challenges?
I believe that alignment and getting all stakeholders on the same page is challenging, especially in the public sector. Obtaining buy-in from businesses can also be challenging, especially in the context of performance. To overcome those challenges, I think improving communication is essential and focusing on delivering the right message at the right time.
For the future of your career, do you intend to keep on working in the public sector, switch to the private sector, or does the sector not really matter to you? Why?
Given the rapid, significant changes happening in the public sector as part of Vision 2030, I think that working in the public sector is much better. Being a part of these remarkable and historic changes is a great opportunity. There will be a better chance for a person to shine and make a difference.
If someone is looking to work in strategy and performance management in the public sector one day, what skills, knowledge and experience would you advise them to acquire?
Any person who wants to work in strategy and performance management in the public sector should focus on communication skills, problem-solving abilities, and persistence.
Learn more about Alsuhaibani’s perspectives on strategy and performance management in the forthcoming government-themed issue of Performance Magazine – Print Edition. Stay updated by subscribing to TKI’s LinkedIn page!
Adel Ali Mreer, a strategy expert with more than 15 years of experience in various industries, believes that organizations should invest in people, technology, and time to drive performance and a data-driven culture with clear, consequence management.
Many new trends have shaped the public sector in recent years, such as macroeconomic and Microeconomic, Social and Environment, Technology, business, and industry restructuring.
What do the public services of the future look like?
The following three approaches will shape the future of public services:
What role will strategy planning and KPI usage play in this futuristic scenario?
They play a vital role in the futuristic scenario. Having clear strategic objectives and KPIs shows all the stakeholders where the future direction and North Star is.
More importantly, they show how to reach that future state and what success looks like.
How is technology impacting the performance of government entities?
Technology and systems are important to enhance the performance of government entities. Government entities must be equipped with data-driven decisions, insights, analytical tools, and techniques. On the other hand, let us not forget that one of the main mandates for government entities is to regulate their related industry. Fulfilling this mandate is becoming more challenging with the rapid change in technology and emerging technologies. They changed the traditional boundaries of the business industry. The unpredictable business models that rely on emerging technologies in Fintech, AI, cryptocurrency, drone, data, and others keep evolving quickly and shifting from one regulatory category to another.
What are your recommended best practices in strategy planning for government agencies?
I would say the strategic planning principle is the same regardless of the industry or organization. Therefore, the recommended best practices during strategy planning are the following:
What key performance indicators should be reported for the successful delivery of public services?
I would not jump to a conclusion quickly and just select a KPI. I would first identify what the strategic objective is. Then, I would have a 360 assessment of the full experience from Initiation until Delivery to Delivery Services. In addition, I would study different aspects and parameters, such as average service delivery time, customer satisfaction, number of complaints, average resolution time (ART), etc. Finally, I would select the KPI that will move the needle to achieve the strategic objective or develop an index that captures the full customer experience Cx.
What are the key performance management tools that any government entity should use to ensure performance improvement?
Any tool that would capture the real performance with less lagging time and has reliable data and business insights. I would go even with a simple Excel sheet and PowerPoint slides if the integrity is higher and provides the outliers with insights.
What are the biggest challenges that government entities face during the implementation and usage of a performance management system? Please provide your suggested solutions.
What are the crucial success factors in building performance and data-driven culture in the public sector?
The management should invest in people, technology, and time to drive performance and a data-driven culture with clear, consequence management.
Which government entities would you recommend to be observed due to their successful approach to strategy and performance management? Why?
I would recommend observing the Saudi Vision Realization Programs (VRPs). I choose them for the following reasons:
What are the key competencies of a successful business leader in a government entity?
The key competencies of a successful business leader are strategic thinking, communication, being motivational, resilience, partnering, and relationship building.
What are the processes and tools you look at when differentiating a successful Performance management system from a superficial one?
First, I would look at having a clear translated strategy in a measurable term. Then, I would check their ability to conduct continuous monitoring and learning. Third, being resilient and agile through periodical tests and adapting methodology. This is done by testing the strategy’s robustness and using decision analytical tools. Finally, the overall organization’s fitness and capability.
This interview was first published in the 24th printed edition of PERFORMANCE Magazine. You can get a free digital copy from the TKI Marketplace here or purchase a print copy from Amazon for a nominal fee here.