Home Business Excellence Award 2023 FITC Nigeria: Pioneering Knowledge Excellence and Global Impact Through Innovation and Technology

FITC Nigeria: Pioneering Knowledge Excellence and Global Impact Through Innovation and Technology

"FITC Nigeria: Pioneering Knowledge Excellence and Global Impact Through Innovation and Technology"

What is FITC Nigeria, and what services does your organization provide? 

FITC is a world-class innovation-led knowledge organization founded over forty (40) years ago. We are committed to leading the advancement in knowledge content that is creatively designed to strengthen the Nigerian financial system. Under the direct supervision of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) and the Nigerian Bankers Committee, FITC was established to provide innovative knowledge solutions and capacity building programmes that develop and strengthens resources for the Nigerian financial services sector through Advisory services, Learning, Research and Advocacy. 

Our biggest impact is supporting the Central Bank of Nigeria (our owners) to achieve systems stability within the Nigerian Financial Service Sector and the economy through our offerings.  

Being a technology-driven company, how do you perceive AI, and how has your organization adapted and implemented it? 

At FITC, we recognize the pivotal role of technology, including Artificial Intelligence (AI), in shaping the future of knowledge and learning. We have embraced AI as a fundamental enabler of our digital transformation. Our use of AI is integral to delivering innovative digital learning programs, enhancing stakeholder engagement, and ensuring that our content remains relevant and adaptive to the needs of our diverse stakeholders. 

Artificial Intelligence is a crucial and transformative technology. We have adapted and implemented AI to align with the changing landscape of the financial services industry. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we quickly transformed into a technology-driven organization, embracing digital learning platforms and virtual conferencing. We leverage Artificial Intelligence to host conferences like the FITC ThinkNnovation Cybersecurity conference, FITC TechNnovation FINTECH conference, and the FITC Employee Engagement & Experience (E3), reaching over Six (6) continents of the world. These events utilize AI-driven digital programs, expanding our global reach and establishing FITC as a thought leader in the financial services sector and beyond. 

In the spectrum of your organization’s diverse activities, which industry do you find most challenging to cater to? 

FITC caters to a diverse range of organizations across various industries, including the financial services sector, manufacturing, fintechs, agriculture, SMEs, telecommunications, oil and gas, regulators and more. Among these, the financial services sector stands out as particularly dynamic and impactful. This rapidly evolving and highly regulated sector is characterized by constant shifts in regulations, financial products, consumer needs, and technology. Staying ahead of these changes, addressing talent concerns, and providing the necessary knowledge and skills to the financial services sector demands unwavering agility. 

FITC’s unwavering commitment to innovation, technology-driven solutions, and staying abreast of industry developments, coupled with our extensive experience, has enabled us to effectively meet these challenges and deliver relevant solutions to the financial services sector. Our expertise lies in providing tailored learning and development programs, fostering industry collaborations, and conducting cutting-edge research that addresses the specific needs of the industries we serve. 

How does your organization support and promote the growth of women entrepreneurs in Africa? 

FITC is actively committed to supporting and promoting the growth of women entrepreneurs in Africa through a multifaceted approach that encompasses thought leadership, advocacy, community service initiatives and much more.  

Financial inclusion is a top priority for us at FITC, because we believe that when women are empowered, everyone benefits. Through our Insight and Policy Advocacy portfolio, we champion financial inclusion for women entrepreneurs. This encompasses organizing thought leadership conferences and symposia that not only impart knowledge and raise awareness about the critical need for financial inclusion for women but also generate actionable insights that ensure women gain access to finance, education, and markets. Additionally, we are dedicated to developing innovative solutions that effectively address the unique financial challenges faced by women entrepreneurs. 

Our commitment to empowering women also encompasses hands-on support for underserved communities. We actively engage in a spectrum of community service initiatives, both independently and in partnership with other organizations, to provide direct assistance to vulnerable women and children. These initiatives not only address immediate needs but also play a pivotal role in advancing women’s economic empowerment across the continent. 

Beyond our corporate initiatives, I am personally invested in nurturing the growth of women entrepreneurs. I have served on the Executive Council Board of the Women in Management, Business, and Public Service (WIMBIZ), a non-profit organization that has impacted over 100,000 women through capacity development, advocacy, and empowerment programs. Through WIMBIZ, I continue to mentor many of these women, contributing to their ongoing growth and success. Additionally, I am currently the Vice Chairman of the Institute of Directors (IoD) Women Directors Development Committee (WDDC), where I mentor female Board Directors and aspiring Directors. 

These initiatives and partnerships exemplify our unwavering commitment to the advancement of women entrepreneurs. We firmly believe that empowering women is a force multiplier for societal progress. By fostering an inclusive financial ecosystem and providing women with the resources and support they need to succeed, we can unlock Africa’s full economic potential. 

Could you kindly share the inception story of FITC Nigeria and its growth trajectory over the years, illustrating how it has evolved into a successful organization in Nigeria and across the African continent? 

FITC, established over 40 years ago, has evolved into a successful organization with a remarkable growth trajectory, becoming a leading knowledge institution not only in Nigeria but also across the African continent.  

FITC’s journey began with a clear mission: to provide innovative knowledge solutions and capacity building programs that would strengthen the Nigerian financial services sector. Under the direct supervision of key regulatory bodies such as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC), and the Nigerian Bankers Committee, FITC has remained steadfast to the mission of leading the advancement in knowledge content, creatively designed to strengthen the Nigerian financial system. FITC’s impact grew steadily. Programs, tailored to different levels of expertise, equipped individuals and organizations with the skills and knowledge they needed to thrive in the ever-evolving financial landscape. From entry-level training to executive education, FITC provided a platform for continuous learning and development. 

Recognizing the need for increased agility and customer focus, we embarked on a strategic transformation journey guided by six key pillars (6 Ps); People: Developing a high-performing workforce, Processes: Streamlining and automating processes, Products: Expanding and enhancing product and service offerings, Partnerships: Building strong relationships with industry and regulators. Through this focused approach, we streamlined our operations, enhanced our offerings, and fostered strong relationships with industry stakeholders. 

This transformation culminated in 2021, as we celebrated our 40th anniversary. This milestone was marked by a series of impactful initiatives aimed at empowering the community, the youth, the financial services sector, and other sectors of the economy. These initiatives showcased our unwavering commitment to utilizing knowledge as a tool for positive change and development. 

Today, FITC stands tall as a leading knowledge institution in Africa. Our dedication to collaboration is evident in our partnerships with prominent organisations such as the International Finance Corporation (IFC), Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), the African FINTECH Association, SAS Institute South Africa, West Africa Bankers Association (WABA), Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS), Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria (FRC), and Nigeria Deposit Insurance Commission (NDIC). These collaborations continue to enrich our offerings, providing robust faculty, enriched learning content, and shared infrastructure, fostering alignment of strategies, and creating mutual benefits and competitive advantages while maximizing performance. 

Our awards and recognition attest to our growth and success. They include the ‘Change Agent in Learning and Development in Africa’ Award in 2020; Business Excellence Award (The BIZZ Award) in 2020; The International Business Excellence (IBX) Award in 2021, Winner of the Global Business Excellence Award in 2021, the Silver category in the Organization of the Year – Business or Professional Services Awards (International Business Awards) 2022, in recognition of our phenomenal initiatives that have led to innovative and exceptional organization wide transformation and positive impact on the Financial Services Sector (FSS), and other sectors of the economy. 

Given that your organization is owned by the bankers’ committee, could you share its policy regarding inviting foreign investment and providing optimal services to investors globally? 

FITC’s ownership by the CBN, NDIC and the Bankers’ committee underscores our key role as a knowledge resource for the Nigerian financial services sector and other sectors of the economy. While we primarily serve the African industry, we have partnerships, and remain open to collaboration and partnerships with global institutions. We recognise the importance of international collaboration in fostering knowledge exchange and contributing to the growth and stability of not only Nigeria’s financial services sector but also on a global scale, thus, we have an extensive program reach across six continents, which reflects our dedication to delivering worldclass learning. 

We maintain a commitment to providing optimal services, fostering knowledge exchange and contributing to the growth and stability of the financial services sector and other sectors of the economy, not only in Nigeria but also on a global scale. In alignment with this commitment, we have established strategic partnerships with renowned international organizations such as the New York Institute of Finance, the Egypt Institute of Finance, the Toronto Centre, and others. These collaborations enable us to leverage their expertise and resources, enriching our programs with global perspectives and best practices. We believe in the reciprocal exchange of knowledge as we strive to contribute to the global economy. 

Through these partnerships, we ensure that our programs encompass a diverse range of content, advocacy initiatives, and, most importantly, a pool of talented professionals. Our objective is not only to enhance the skills and capabilities of individuals in Nigeria but also to showcase the excellence of the Nigerian financial sector to the international community. 

In essence, FITC’s approach is one of openness, collaboration, and the pursuit of excellence on a global scale. By fostering international partnerships and extending our program reach, we aim to bridge the gap between local and global financial practices, facilitating a two-way exchange that benefits not only Africa but also contributes positively to the broader international financial landscape. 

What does the roadmap of FITC look like, for the future?  

The world is changing at an unprecedented pace, driven by technological innovation and disruption. Emerging technologies are transforming industries, cybersecurity threats are evolving rapidly, and the digital economy is booming. In this dynamic landscape, FITC remains at the forefront, responding proactively and strategically to these trends. In response to the transformative impact of technology, FITC has implemented internal initiatives like Project TIE (Technology, Innovation, and Excellence), incorporating cutting-edge solutions such as Sage ERP, Cutting edge CRM tools, the Convener conferencing platform, and other AI tools. These initiatives demonstrate our commitment to operational excellence and efficiency. 

We have equally priotized cutting-edge enterprise solutions as the foundation to drive innovation and agility in our processes and platforms to make our operations more efficient and so we invested heavily in pioneering enterprise solutions to further simplify data collection, billing, analysis and reporting to improve decision making. This, we believe, has helped to streamline processes, reduce rework, reduce costs, and improve the overall quality of our operations. 

To continue to lead in the areas of technology & innovation, we have instituted a dynamic advocacy and incubation team of digital mavens and digital natives known as “The Catalysts” consisting of mostly millennials and Gen Zs. Their role: to drive and coordinate FITC’s digital transformation across culture, technology investments and energized adoptions by casting and setting the objectives, continuously assessing the technology, innovation and other needs of the organization, identifying the key projects for execution and evaluating ongoing and completed projects. 

For the industries that we serve, we are continually positioned to equip our stakeholders at leadership levels to tackle the challenges posed by emerging technologies through leadership programs tailored for boards and executives. Recognizing Africa’s youthful demographic, our focus extends to upskilling and reskilling talents, through our innovatively curated programs geared towards empowering the next generation. The FITC Future of Work Academy (FOWA) stands as a cornerstone, equipping young minds with essential digital skills crucial for the demands of the future workplace. The FITC Future of Work Academy (FOWA) is structured across eight schools, covering diverse domains to ensure a holistic approach to skill development. The schools include the School of Data Analytics, School of Data Science, School of Cyber Security, School of Coding, School of Graphic Design, School of Digital Marketing, School of Product Design and Management, and the School of Soft Skill. 

FITC is also investing in Project V4F (The Vision for the Future), underlining our dedication to cutting-edge learning services. The goal is to democratize learning, making quality learning and development accessible across continents, and to everyone, thus ensuring that our impact is felt on a global scale. We are surely navigating the evolving landscape with a forward-thinking approach.  

By investing in youths, adapting to technological disruptions, and fostering global learning accessibility, we remain true to our mandate of being a catalyst for innovation and excellence in the financial and business ecosystem.  

 Company Name : FITC Nigeria

 Website : www.fitc-ng.com

 Management Team

 Chizor Malize, Managing Director/CEO
 Adeola Agbato, Head, Learning and   Development
 Alaba Ekundayo, Head, Corporate   Services & Company Secretary

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