Sarang Nagmote

CIO 2023

Leading the Digital Frontier in India's IT Landscape

Dr. Sujit Senapati

Vice President (VP) - Digital & IT,

Vardhman Textiles

An influential figure shaping the digital landscape as Vice President of Digital & IT at Vardhman Textiles, Dr. Sujit Senapati has been revolutionising the industry and delivering astounding IT and digital savings exceeding $30 million. Leading large-scale IT operations, infrastructure, and security for a vast user base of over 50,000, Dr. Sujit’s expertise spans digital IT & digital strategy & roadmap, digital transformation, IT governance & risk management, data security enhance & compliance, managing cross cultural multilocation teams, talent development & succession planning, and cross-functional collaboration for enterprise-wide system integration. His unparalleled ability to navigate these challenges has earned him a reputation as a dynamic and effective leader.
Dr. Sujit has been instrumental in driving digital transformation within renowned companies, leveraging his visionary mindset to develop ROI-driven business cases for multiple digitalisation initiatives. From inception to execution, he oversees every aspect of the transformation journey, ensuring seamless integration of business case development, governance, solution mapping, technology architecture, and strategic partner collaborations. Dr. Sujit has spent years in Singapore and several European countries, particularly France and Netherlands, working for marquee companies like SAP, Maersk and Vedanta. This adds to his global exposure, making him more proficient to craft strategies for and according to the international markets.
What sets Dr. Sujit apart is his innate talent for fostering a digital culture and inspiring teams to embrace innovation. By actively engaging business stakeholders and nurturing digital champions, he ignites a collective passion for digital excellence within organisations. An alumnus of IIIT, IRMA and Stanford, his leadership not only transforms businesses but also empowers individuals to thrive in an ever-evolving digital landscape. Dr. Sujit’s track record of success showcases his ability to navigate complexity, drive digital innovation, and leave an indelible impact on organisations.
As TradeFlock engages in a conversation with Dr. Sujit, he continues to inspire and revolutionise, carving a path towards a digital frontier where possibilities are limitless.

In your role as a VP, what actions have you taken to enhance service quality, improve productivity, and drive efficient IT operations within the organisation?

I have implemented a well-structured hybrid organisation that combines in-house and outsourced resources. Our focus is on continual service improvement (CSI) programmes aligned with ITIL standards. We actively seek feedback from internal IT users through the Voice of Customer (VoC) initiative, ensuring that our solutions align with industry best practises.
To improve service quality, we have established a robust incident review process. By analysing patterns and trends, we identify root causes and implement structured problem-solving methodologies. Our goal is to reduce incidents and enhance IT enduser satisfaction. Additionally, we prioritise productivity improvements by providing regular training to our IT operations teams and following updated SOPs. We also leverage automation wherever possible to streamline processes and maximise efficiency.

As a leader in the digital and IT industry, what are your future goals and aspirations? How do you plan to continue making a positive impact in your field of expertise?

My future goals and aspirations revolve around creating a framework that enables business leaders to assess the IT and digital maturity of their organisations. This framework will provide valuable insights and recommend steps for improving maturity across processes, people, governance, and technology adoption. By implementing this framework within my current organisation, we can identify areas for digital maturity enhancement regularly.
I am also eager to explore the practical applications of emerging technologies such as Blockchain, Metaverse, and components of Industry 4.0 within my industry. Building and showcasing relevant use cases will contribute to the advancement and adoption of these technologies, driving innovation and growth.
Overall, my goal is to continue making a positive impact by empowering organisations to enhance their digital maturity and leveraging cutting-edge technologies to drive industry-wide transformation.

What are your strengths and weaknesses as a security professional?

As a security professional, my strength lies in my passion for continuous learning. I am driven to expand my knowledge and skills, keeping up with the latest exploits, vulnerabilities, and security techniques. I actively share my findings with others, fostering a culture of knowledge sharing.
On the other hand, one of my weaknesses is occasionally prioritising the growth and development of my team members over my personal growth. However, I am actively working on finding a balance between supporting my team and investing in my professional development.

As a mentor, how do you support and develop the talent within your teams, and how has this contributed to employee satisfaction and growth?

I employ various strategies to support and develop the talent within my teams, fostering employee satisfaction and growth. I prioritise creating a sense of pride and ownership among team members for their contributions. Rather than viewing IT as a support function, we recognise its vital role in achieving a sustainable competitive advantage for our organisation.
To facilitate talent development, we identify knowledge gaps and implement measures for long-term skill building. We design initiatives that address these gaps, fostering continuous learning and development within the team. This approach enhances individual capabilities and creates a culture of growth and personal advancement.
By implementing these strategies, we have witnessed positive outcomes in terms of employee satisfaction and growth. Team members feel valued and motivated, knowing that their contributions are significant to the organisation’s success. This sense of pride and fulfilment drives their engagement and professional development, ultimately leading to overall team success and the achievement of organisational goals.

What advice would you offer to aspiring individuals who see you as an inspiration?

To aspiring individuals who see me as an inspiration, my advice would be to gain a deep understanding of your employer’s business and identify ways in which technology can support the overall business strategy. Collaborate closely with business leaders, comprehend their challenges, and leverage technology to address them effectively.
Secondly, set clear goals with well-defined KPIs that align with your organisation’s objectives. Establish a Value Realisation Office (VRO) to monitor progress regularly and ensure that the value delivered by technology initiatives is measurable and aligned with business outcomes. You also need to stay updated on the latest technology trends and industry best practises. Explore how these advancements can be leveraged to benefit your business and drive innovation.
Cultivate strong relationships with key technology suppliers to ensure reliable support and access to the latest solutions. Build a skilled and futureready team. Develop emotional intelligence and the ability to connect with people, including your customers, to deliver exceptional service and build lasting relationships.

How do your team members perceive you as a leader and inspiration in the field of cybersecurity, and how do you ensure their growth and learning path?

My team members view me as an approachable and supportive leader who treats them as friends and valuable resources. I prioritise knowledge sharing and pass on my learnings to my juniors and colleagues, offering guidance and solutions not only in information security but also in personal challenges. I take pride in their growth and success, encouraging their professional development through certifications and mentorship.
To ensure their growth, I actively engage with each team member, providing guidance and conducting knowledge-sharing sessions. I support their pursuit of relevant certifications and leverage my network to assist them in finding new opportunities. I emphasise the importance of building a strong foundation before considering transitions. Their growth and success are paramount to me, and I strive to be a mentor and facilitator in their professional journeys.
















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