The Singapore Computer Society (SCS) and Singapore Institute of Directors (SID) signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to collaborate on increasing the diversity and digital quotient of boards to enhance corporate governance.
The MOU was officiated by Mr Sam Liew, President of SCS and Ms Wong Su-Yen, FSID, Chairperson of the SID Governing Council, at the inaugural SCS-SID Seminar “Ready for Boardroom” graced by Mr Tan Kiat How, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Communications and Information & Ministry of National Development.
The three broad areas of cooperation between the two organisations are:
- Co-develop a directorship development pathway for infocomm and digital media professionals. This is to map out the necessary skills and competencies required for these professionals to serve effectively on boards, and to chart out key professional development attainments to help them progress;
- Co-curate and run a holistic Board Readiness Programme for infocomm and digital media professionals to help them become board-ready. The pilot run will be for SCS’s Women in Technology (WIT). The curriculum is expected to include training and educational courses provided by SID, a mentorship programme featuring experienced directors as mentors, and networking events for WIT to expand their professional network and to facilitate peer learning; and
- Cross-sharing of thought-leadership content between SCS and SID to benefit members of both organisations. This could take the form of jointly organised seminars and workshops or having eminent members from both organisations speak at each other’s events.
Said Mr Sam Liew, President, Singapore Computer Society, “The collaboration between SCS and SID reinforces the importance and value of gender diversity in the workplace and corporate leadership, which is in line with the government’s plan on women development in Singapore. SCS and SID will jointly focus efforts on curating programmes, events and resources to equip women professionals and leaders. We believe that an inclusive working environment with diverse ideas and insights will increase the levels of innovation and productivity.”
“This partnership highlights SID’s commitment to diversity in the boardroom across multiple dimensions, including gender and functional expertise. In order for companies to thrive in the dynamic and disruptive environment within which they operate, a broad range of experience and skillsets is no longer a nice-to-have. It is existential,” said Ms Wong Su-Yen, Chairperson, SID Governing Council.
SCS Women in Tech Chapter President, Ms Tan Lee Chew said: “I am very excited about our collaboration with SID as it further affirms SCS’ belief in gender diversity and an inclusive workforce, especially in the male dominated tech industry. This milestone brings us a step closer to achieving a higher female board representation, where diverse perspectives can bring about more balanced decisions, better business outcomes and innovation.”
“As a woman director, I believe that diversity on board is an important and urgent matter and while there are some successes, there is still much that needs to be done,” said Ms Poh Mui Hoon, FSID, Fellow of both SCS and SID, and Chairperson of the SID Digital Committee. “I’m heartened that both SID and SCS are proactively contributing to enhancing board diversity to enhance corporate governance.”
“To grapple with fast-paced changes transforming our world, it is imperative to increase the digital quotient of directors and boards so they can make better strategic decisions and mitigate risks brought about by the digital wave,” said Mr Howie Lau, MSID, Chair of SID’s Membership and Networks Committee and Honorary Fellow of SCS. “It is timely that SID and SCS are coming together to not only increase the pipeline of board-ready infocomm and digital media professionals, but also to increase the digital acumen of boards through cross-domain knowledge sharing.”
The SCS-SID collaboration and Board Readiness Programme is also supported by Singapore Women in Tech (SGWiT), an initiative by the Infocomm Media Development Authority in partnership with the tech industry and community. The SGWiT aims to attract, inspire and develop girls and women to pursue a career in Singapore’s dynamic ICT sector. SGWiT believes in the value of a diverse workforce, the importance of role models for inspiring interests in tech, and partnerships for a supportive ecosystem for women in tech.
Following the signing of the MOU, SCS and SID will set up a working group with representatives from both organisations to develop the areas of cooperation. The first run of the Board Readiness Programme for WIT is slated for the first quarter of 2023.