Q&A with IBM Consulting’s Saudi Arabia leader Dina Abo-Onoq

15 December 2021 Consultancy-me.com 3 min. read
More news on

Riyadh-based Dina Abo-Onoq is a Managing partner at IBM and the Saudi Arabia Country Leader of the recently formed IBM Consulting. She explains how the tech giant and its consulting division is supporting the Kingdom’s vision for the future and meeting the needs of clients and society worldwide.

The ‘Saudi Vision 2030: Creating a Digital Legacy in the Kingdom’ event was created in partnership with IBM. How else have you been supporting the Saudi vision?

The realization of the vision is not just the responsibility of government but also of the private sector. With that in mind, we have been working with both government and private sector entities on a variety of projects.

These include developing national strategies; designing, building, and operating many of the technology enablers of the vision; and helping to realize the longer-term vision of the country by supporting highly innovative initiatives based on emerging technologies.

Riyadh-based Dina Abo-Onoq, Country Leader Saudi Arabia, IBM Consulting

IBM has also been heavily focused on developing Saudi talent through our own programs as well as by forging partnerships and working with different agencies to provide training on the latest emerging technologies. These efforts are aimed at preparing Saudi youth for the future of work, hence supporting the kingdom’s National Vision 2030.

What are the biggest challenges the kingdom and tech companies like IBM will face as Saudi Arabia progresses along its digitalization journey?

Digitization doesn’t pose a challenge for IBM. Rather, it is an opportunity for us. However, I think the biggest challenge that tech companies face is the war for talent. We are addressing this through various partnerships with universities and non-government organizations as well as our aggressive hiring of Saudi graduates, but this is something that all tech companies must continue to focus on.

More broadly, IBM is making bold steps to expand access to digital skills and employment opportunities world-wide. We have just announced a global ground-breaking commitment to provide 30 million people with the new skills needed for the jobs of tomorrow by 2030. To achieve this goal, IBM has a clear roadmap with more than 170 new academic and industry partnerships.

IBM has always held a unique position at the intersection of business, technology, and society. How do you intend to retain this position and remain a global player among the tech giants?

IBM’s history is one of continuous reinvention. However, our values and focus on innovation remain constant. We have always believed in the fundamental promise of technology – that when we apply innovation to real-world problems, we drive progress for both business and society.

That’s why IBM has never been defined by the products or services it brings to market. Rather, IBM is defined by its willingness to take whatever shape is necessary to deliver value to its clients.

Building on our 110-year legacy, we have been taking decisive strategic actions including our acquisition of Red Hat in 2019 and the recent spinoff of our managed infrastructure services business, now known as Kyndryl. With all these steps, IBM is sharpening its focus on hybrid cloud and AI, while leveraging a portfolio focused on technology, consulting, and an ecosystem of partners.

IBM Consulting was formed in October this year following the rebrand of IBM’s Global Business Services. The division has around 140,000 consultants and technologists globally.