Hafizullah Irfan: Orchestrating Innovation & Strategic Excellence In It

Hafizullah Irfan: Orchestrating Innovation & Strategic Excellence In It

Hafizullah Irfan, Founder & Chief Strategy Officer

Hafizullah Irfan

Founder & Chief Strategy Officer

Chief Strategy Officers (CSOs) in Malaysia play a pivotal role in shaping the future trajectory of organizations amidst rapid technological advancements and evolving market landscapes. Among these visionaries is Hafizullah Irfan, an esteemed entrepreneur and strategist renowned for his adept leadership in the IT sector. With over three decades of experience, Hafizullah has spearheaded numerous ventures, leveraging his expertise to revolutionize cloud-based solutions and digital transformation strategies. His entrepreneurial journey reflects a commitment to excellence, evidenced by accolades such as Olivestouch’s recognition as a top IT solution provider and its remarkable resilience during the pandemic.

In an in-depth conversation with CEO Insights Asia Magazine, Hafizullah shares with us his leadership methodologies, future roadmap for Olivestouch, and much more. Let’s hear it from him.

How would you define Olivestouch as an organization and its current position in the market? What are the various roles and responsibilities that you shoulder as the CSO of the firm?

Olivestouch is a pioneering force in cloud computing, founded in 2015 with a vision for innovation and adaptability. As a boutique consulting firm, we excel in providing end-to-end solutions, from consulting and implementation to managed services and development. Our commitment to seamless integration of both on-premise and cloud technologies has positioned us as a trusted partner in the market.

As the CSO of the firm, I shoulder a multifaceted role. My primary responsibility is to steer the organization towards future growth and sustainability. This involves identifying new business opportunities, exploring emerging technologies, and evaluating potential ventures. I oversee strategic planning and execution across all ventures within our portfolio, ensuring alignment with our long-term vision and objectives. Additionally, I serve as a mentor and advisor, providing guidance to our teams and partners, and fostering a culture of innovation and collaboration.

We strive to keep our organization at the forefront of innovation, poised to adapt & thrive in an ever-changing landscape

What are the latest strategic plans you have adopted to optimize operations and engage new audiences in the market?

In response to market trends and our own successes, we're diversifying our offerings beyond Oracle ERP solutions. As the largest Oracle local partner in Malaysia, we've proven our ability to deliver projects with local talent, even amidst challenges like limited travel during COVID. Leveraging this success, we're expanding our product portfolio to include solutions from other vendors, tapping into emerging markets and meeting evolving customer needs. Additionally, we're strategically positioning ourselves for the cloud era and embracing transformative technologies such as blockchain, IoT, and AI/ML. Our dedicated team is already delving into these areas, ensuring we stay ahead of the curve and can help customers seamlessly adopt these concepts.

Tell us about your leadership approach. What are the methodologies that you follow as a leader?

As a leader, I adhere to a hands-on approach centered around leading by example and fostering a culture of delegation and empowerment. I prioritize acquiring knowledge and expertise myself, enabling me to provide solutions and lead with vision. Delegation is a cornerstone of my leadership style, I firmly believe in entrusting responsibility to others, allowing them the space to excel and grow. Even in the face of mistakes, I view them as opportunities for learning and development, offering support and guidance where needed. This philosophy extends throughout our organization, instilling a sense of autonomy and ownership at all levels.

How do you keep yourself up-to-date with ongoing industry trends to steer your organization towards the future?

As Chief Strategy Officer, I've transitioned from overseeing day-to-day operations to focusing on charting our company's future trajectory. To stay abreast of industry trends, I engage in extensive research, leveraging my penchant for exploration and my active online presence. This research serves as the foundation for guiding our functional, technology, and training teams towards relevant areas of exploration.

By providing them with direction and facilitating focused research, we ensure that our team remains well-equipped for both current demands and future challenges. Furthermore, we prioritize ongoing education and certifications, enabling our team to continuously evolve alongside industry advancements.

What is the future destination that you have envisioned for Olivestouch?

Our future destination revolves around harnessing the power of AI and ML to drive productivity and efficiency. Recognizing the rapid advancements in these technologies, we're closely collaborating with our strategic team to anticipate future trends and opportunities over the next few years. Our focus is on automating internal processes and integrating AI into our own practices first, before extending these capabilities to our customers.

By doing so, we aim to empower both our team and our clients, ensuring they leverage AI and ML for maximum benefit. This strategic shift will define our trajectory for the next four to five years, as we continue to innovate and integrate new technologies into our service offerings, with a keen focus on enhancing productivity and delivering value to our customers.

Hafizullah Irfan, Founder & Chief Strategy Officer, Olivestouch

Hafizullah Irfan has an MBA in Finance from the Institute of Business Administration, Karachi, and has held senior positions at Oracle, Stone Apple Malaysia, and Netsol Technologies. As the Founder and Chief Strategy Officer of Olivestouch, he spearheads digital transformation initiatives. Moreover, his entrepreneurial endeavors include founding Softech360 (ESG consulting firm) and serving as a business advisor at Barterrup (circular sharing platform for organizations).

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