Anne Moises, Scottish Government CIO

Written by Alan Robertson on 11 January 2016 in Feature

Connect is running through our Tech 100, profiling the key figures driving the digital agenda in Scotland

Anne Moises

Job Title/Organisation: CIO, Scottish Government

What does your role involve?

There are three key components of my role. These are the effective delivery of existing ICT/digital services for the Scottish Government and our shared services customer; helping shape the future direction and transformation of digital services; and progressing assurance work to improve the capacity and capability of ICT delivery within the central government sector.

The role is made even more interesting by my involvement in cyber resilience and security for the public sector in Scotland and in the challenges of taking forward the digital skills agenda.

What do you consider to be the most imminent challenge in your line of work?

Ensuring that we have access to the right people with the right skills to take forward the exciting and ambitious programme of work to transform public services.

What has been the most rewarding piece of work you've undertaken?

Difficult to pick just one thing but a definite highlight for me has been seeing the Scottish Wide Area Network (SWAN) programme go from just a concept to a reality with over 5,000 sites connected to a constantly growing network.

It has been a great example of how effective collaboration amongst the public sector can result in significant savings and efficiencies and I feel privileged to have been part of the team taking this forward.

How can Scotland bridge the digital skills gap?

I know there is great work going on with the Skills Improvement Programme and initiatives such as CodeClan but, unfortunately, I don’t think there are any quick fixes here. All of us need to get involved in making the digital area one which is attractive to the next generation as well as convincing the current working population to develop digital skills.

I think we need to start at primary school by making digital skills relevant and exciting - crucially catching the imagination of children who have no difficulty in using the technology but who seldom, if ever, are encouraged to think about how it works and how they might contribute to its evolution.

And we absolutely need to do more to make this a more diverse profession – one that is of interest to females – dispelling the myth that it is all about ‘geeks’ coding in darkened rooms and demonstrating that digital talent comes in all shapes and sizes and that there are almost limitless opportunities to apply those skills.

Which new technology excites you the most?

I think some of the innovations in healthcare and remote diagnostics are really exciting. The use of technology to improve the quality of peoples’ lives and give them more control over their own health, body or environment is an area where I hope we will see even more investment and technical advances in 2016.

What's your favourite app and why?

Close tie between FaceTime (my young nephews live in Malaysia and it is a great way to stay in touch) and the app which controls the central heating at home (afraid I am a complete wimp at this time of year and being able to switch on the heating remotely is fantastic).

What, for you, will 2016 be the year of from a technology/digital standpoint?

I believe that this is the year where cyber resilience gains more prominence and is seen as an essential component to build into any digital initiative. The recently published Cyber Resilience Strategyfor Scotland sets out the actions we all need to take to make Scotland a cyber resilient place to live, work and do business; and to ensure that our economy and our people reap the rewards of expanding digital opportunities.

For the public sector, a focus on cyber resilience is essential. Our public services are reliant on digital systems and it is crucial that cyber risk is planned and budgeted for when providing these services. In turn, this will help to keep citizens’ confident in using digital public services. People have a right to expect that it is safe to interact with public services, and that their data is handled securely and appropriately by those delivering vital services.

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