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Conversation with a Chief Digital Officer Sundar Sukavanam, at firstsource with Gayatri Kalyanaraman from PM Power Consulting on 

  • Role of CDO has always been there with work done by CIO, CTO and the CEO
  • Digital has made people think of business models differently and opened several doors
  • Digital office has important pillars such as Intelligent Automation (RPA), machine first capability, partnerships, evangelization
  • Talks about 18,000 puzzle pieces coming together as an art!
  • Talks about the mantra of Digital First! Digital Now and why its critical to think of innovation at break neck speed
  • Sundar talks about experience as an account manager working in the US for P&L leader
  • Wearing the architect hat (not being an empty suit), powering the enterprise for Cognizant and learnt how to make the most of it
  • Business Operations manager for the insurance team and understood the need for automation and shares stories
  • Sundara speaks about traveling across the globe and themes that triggered moves 
  • Enterprise IT is like utility. No one knows when only till it stops working!
  • Think of the users in enterprise IT rather than the sponsors or the conduits
  • Alvin tofflers’ quote on twentieth century literate are those who learn, unlearn and relearn soon
  • Today it has to be fail fast, learn faster
  • While star gazing, Sundara believes that there would be empathy driven models and stress on creativity and how data and domain will rule the skills. 
  • Its not specialists who would be impressive, but generalists who have specialization.
  • Key takeaway for everyone should be to how do you balance what the technology can offer and what Human ingenuity can make happen


Sundara Sukavanam is Chief Digital Officer (CDO) at Firstsource Solutions. He drives the ‘Digital First, Digital Now’ agenda for the organisation with the focus to help our customers in their digital transformation journey.

Sundara leads Firstsource’s Digital Services including Intelligent Automation, Analytics, and scaling Business Process as a Service (BPaaS) offerings. He also manages global partnerships with industry-leading platforms in RPA, ML/AI and SaaS and integrates that IP into their solutions.

As part of the CIO’s office, Sundara built large scale enterprise platforms across Operations, Sales and Marketing, Planning and Forecasting, and Enterprise Performance Management, in partnership with the business.

Sundara is a business and technology leader with over 24 years of experience in the IT & Operations industry, working with the world’s leading corporations across the Manufacturing, Utilities, Retail, Financial Services, Healthcare, and Media & Information sectors – delivering solutions in Application Development, Core Modernization, Cloud Migration, Quality Assurance, Analytics and Intelligent Process Automation. Sundara has a Master’s degree from National Institute of Technology, India and Certifications from the Stanford Business School. He is based in the US with his wife and teenage son. Sundara is an avid reader and a sports buff.