Speech By Mr Ronnie Tay, Chief Executive Officer, Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore at the Infocomm Professionals Development Forum

27 July 2012 - Speech By Mr Ronnie Tay, Chief Executive Officer, Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore at the Infocomm Professionals Development Forum 2012, 1.20 pm, Rendezvous Hotel

Speech By Mr Ronnie Tay, Chief Executive Officer, Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore at the Infocomm Professionals Development Forum 2012, 27 July 2012, 1.20 pm, Rendezvous Hotel

Mr Chak Kong Soon, President, SCS

Distinguished Guests

Ladies and Gentlemen

1. It is my pleasure to join you here today at the annual Infocomm Professionals Development Forum 2012. The theme this year, "Staying Current, Empowering your Tomorrow" highlights both the critical need and the exciting opportunities faced by Singapore's infocomm professionals in this rapid-changing industry. Being strategically located in fast-growing Asia, it is especially important for us to keep growing our skills base so as to position ourselves to compete for tomorrow's opportunities.

Singapore is a vibrant infocomm hub

2. Let me first share some highlights of the Singapore infocomm industry.

3. Singapore's infocomm industry posted an 18.5 per cent year-on-year increase in revenue in 2011 to reach S$83 billion. This represents our strongest growth in five years. According to our latest Annual Survey on Infocomm Manpower 2011, there was a 1.1 per cent increase in employment, with infocomm workforce reaching almost 143,000.

4. Singapore has also done well in terms of global rankings, which reinforces our position as an infocomm hub. Singapore retained 2nd position in the World Economic Forum Global Information Technology Report, which measures the impact of ICT on the development process and competitiveness of nations. The Waseda University Institute of e-Government has also ranked Singapore first for the fourth consecutive year in its e-Government ranking of countries.

New business opportunities and demand for manpower are created with the rapid growth of emerging technologies

5. Next, let me touch on some emerging and growth areas.

6. According to Gartner's worldwide survey of more than 2,300 IT executives, CIOs have named BA as their top technology priority for 2012, closely followed by Mobile Technologies and Cloud Computing.1 BA will continue to underpin new waves of growth, by empowering enterprises with essential insights to make effective and timely business decisions. The IDC has predicted that the BA market will reach $33.9 billion in 2012, up 8.2 per cent from 20112.

7. Cloud Computing is the second growth area cited by the CIOs. Enterprise spending on public cloud services is expected to grow by some 20% to reach $109 billion worldwide in 2012. According to Gartner, by 2016, enterprise public cloud services spending will reach $207 billion, and that is more than double the spent in less than five years time. According to the Singapore Cloud Adoption Study commissioned by IDA, Singapore is ranked third, after Australia and Japan, in terms of cloud adoption in APAC.

8. Mobile devices will grow in importance in accessing cloud services. In fact, they form a key platform for digital engagement as mobile and tablet adoption continues to grow. Cisco predicted early this year that by the end of 2012, the number of mobile connected devices will be more than the world population4, and I think it was reported this week that this has been reached. Enterprise mobility prospects are looking bright. The Insight Research has forecast that enterprise mobility products will generate nearly US$40 billion in annual sales for developers by 2016.

IDA is committed in supporting professional development and developing job opportunities

9. We are seeing these growth opportunities in various technology and use areas, but what do we need to do to take advantage of them? We need infocomm professionals who have the relevant skills to realise those opportunities. IDA's Infocomm Manpower Development Roadmap Version 2.0 or MDEV 2.0 therefore seeks to support our professionals, at three levels - fresh graduates, in-service professionals and experts in their respective fields.

10. The Company-Led Training for Fresh Professionals (CLT) aims to groom fresh graduates or fresh professionals to take on specialist level jobs through in-house training. IBM, Standard Chartered Bank and SAS have come onboard as partners. Under the mentorship of senior staff, at least 50 fresh graduates will undergo foundation training before being rotated between the various divisions of the companies and partner sites to gain practical work experience quickly and ramp up their skills.

11. In-service professionals can leverage upon programmes such as the Critical Infocomm Technology Resource Programme (CITREP), which supports course and examination fees for training courses and certifications. Since April 2011, it has been expanded to cover emerging technologies. Around 8,000 professionals have been trained and we look forward to supporting more professionals.

12. For the more senior infocomm professionals, IDA's focus is two-pronged - the first prong is to help professionals acquire skills in emerging and growth areas and the second is to train professionals on domain-specific technologies. Under the Infocomm Leadership and Development Programme Expanded (iLEAD Expanded), IDA will partner key industry players to grow and develop infocomm leaders in niche technology areas.

13. To provide more receptacles for "expert" level skills training, IDA is also working with the industry on a new Centres of Attachment (COA) initiative under iLEAD Expanded. Such centres could be technology labs by the industry or academia, and will provide experiential training through short term project work and mentorship.

14. Today, I am pleased to announce two new COAs, in partnership with EMC and Microsoft respectively. The EMC Centre will provide expert level training for job roles which includes Cloud Architect and Data Scientist, while the Microsoft Centre will provide on-the-job training opportunities in areas such as SaaS Design and Business Intelligence. Collectively, IDA targets to train over 100 infocomm experts within the next two years under iLEAD Expanded.

15. For mobile computing, the Applications-on-Multi-Platforms Simplify initiative (AMPlify) was launched in 2010 to deepen the skills of application developers in the growth area of mobile computing. We recently enhanced AMPlify to support enterprise mobility. Tapping on iLEAD Expanded, IDA will co-fund the training of developers in areas which includes Mobile Architecture, Mobile Operations and User Interface & Experience Design.

16. The Hybrid Skills Development Programme was designed to build up professionals' in-domain knowledge and expertise in developing infocomm solutions for these businesses. Kick-starting the programme was IDA's partnership with NUS in setting up the Centre of Healthcare Informatics. The Centre enables professionals and students in iHLs to acquire both healthcare informatics and IT applications skills through certification programmes, industry attachments and hands-on projects. In total, up to 600 ICT professionals will be trained and another 1,000 healthcare professionals will gain a deeper appreciation of ICT in healthcare.

17. Specifically for entrepreneurs or professionals, especially young ones, aspiring to start a business, I encourage you to take advantage of the iSTART programme. It includes entrepreneurial education programmes such as those under the Founder Institute which is an incubator that trains entrepreneurs on the best practices for building high-tech businesses, and Kauffman Foundation, one of the world's largest foundations devoted to entrepreneurship training programmes.

18. To assist infocomm professionals to personally take charge of your skills and career development, there are two national resources you can tap on. The first is the National Infocomm Competency Framework (NICF), which was set up in 2009 and recently updated in 2011 with 587 competencies and 314 job roles. NICF has been enhanced to support infocomm professionals in the following two ways - to suggest training resources based on your current level of competency and to help organisations integrate the framework for their human resource competency roadmapping.

19. The second is the newly-launched InfoPier, Singapore's flagship infocomm registry, focused on providing a rich repository of shared knowledge, a platform for collaboration and an active community to support each other in your professional development journey. I am very pleased that InfoPier has been very well received, and I would encourage all of you to be part of this online community.


20. With continual personal development and strong support from the infocomm community, I believe that everyone will be able to perform to his or her best as an individual and together as a group. I would like to urge all of you to take full advantage of the programmes earlier mentioned and all others available, as well as to be a part of the infocomm community on InfoPier. Together, we will be able to continue steering our infocomm industry to greater heights.

21. Thank you one and all, and I trust you will have a fruitful seminar this afternoon.

Notes to Editor

1 Gartner Executive Programs’ Worldwide Survey of More Than 2,300 CIOs Shows Flat IT Budgets in 2012, but IT Organisations Must Deliver on Multiple Priorities, 18 January 2012.

2 IDA Launches Worldwide Business Analytics Software Tracker - Market is Expected to Reach #33.9 Billion in 2012, Up 8.2% from 2011,
17 January 2012.

3 Gartner Says Worldwide IT Spending On Pace to Surpass $3.6 Trillion in 2012, 10 July 2012.

4 Cisco Visual Networking Index: Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update, 2011-2016, 14 February 2012.

Last updated on: 13 Mar 2023