Here’s what you need to know about digital transformation in Pakistan

“What does digital do for me?”

This was the response from a large bank’s CFO when Javaid Iqbal made a pitch for digital transformation in 2017. Iqbal, who is co-founder and CEO at TranformX, thought the CFO was half-joking. Unfortunately, he wasn’t.

He says the accountability and efficiency that digitally connected systems bring to a department or organisation are not always welcomed by C-suite professionals.

As an advisor and educator on all things digital, innovation, Cloud, and artificial intelligence for the past 20 years, Iqbal sits at an informed vantage point from where he observes the aches, pains, and successes companies face when it comes to transformation. And he believes that these “naysayers” will not survive long.

Stressing on the difference between innovation and transformation, Iqbal says that the latter has to do with a change in mindset first and foremost.

Watch our interview with Iqbal to learn his five pillars for digital transformation; what the careers of the future look like; what the real challenges are for organisations when it comes to this kind of change; and what role academic institutions play in preparing young people for Pakistan’s digital future.

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Born and raised in Karachi, 43-year-old Javaid is a Purdue and Northwestern alumnus. Iqbal’s journey to being a go-to man for “all things digital” started in the US-based technology consulting practice of Ernst & Young. He went on to joining Pricewaterhouse Coopers and eventually Salesforce in Chicago. He moved back to Pakistan to set up a Karachi office for TransformX, which is a US-based firm established in 2016 with an aim to provide human-centric digital transformation solutions that focus on employee enablement and customer engagement.

An entrepreneur himself, Iqbal’s passion is finding solutions to what he calls “unique futuristic global problems”. He envisions a digital future for the country where every individual will act as an owner of their own business.

“It will fuel Pakistan’s economy to heights never achieved before.”

For this digital future to materialise, however, Iqbal says academic and government leaders need to open their eyes to the need of learning, embracing and investing in digital technology.

If you’re curious about the challenges and opportunities for transformation in Pakistan, don’t miss this interview. If you’re curious about how Iqbal keeps up his knowledge on innovation or transformation, we found out what he’s currently reading; Customer Success: How Innovative Companies Are Reducing Churn and Growing Recurring Revenue by Nick Mehta, Dan Steinman, and Lincoln Murphy.

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