Denise Oberndorf, vice president of Growth, Defense and Intel with Capgemini Government Solutions, recently spoke with ExecutiveBiz regarding the biggest improvements that she’s recognized in emerging technologies and the challenges that federal leaders are facing to stay ahead of the speed of innovation.
In addition, Oberndorf discussed the key focus areas and drivers of growth for Capgemini across the commercial and federal landscapes. She also mentioned the core values of the company’s culture and how its workforce drives success in such a competitive market during the latest Executive Spotlight interview.
“Our brand is strong. Capgemini is attracting and developing the best talent in a very competitive market because we have institutionalized the concept of people first. We believe our reputation and success is directly attributed to the quality and happiness of our people.”
You can read the full interview with Denise Oberndorf below:
ExecutiveBiz: What can you tell us about the company’s recent growth initiatives and how you’re driving value for your customers through contract awards, acquisitions and other aspects across the federal sector?
Denise Oberndorf: “Capgemini continues to take full advantage of the strong alignment of our capabilities and offerings portfolio, as well as the structural demand for digital transformation from our clients.
We are able to bring our industry best practices to the federal market by leveraging those capabilities from our commercial and non-federal markets.
We also recently acquired VariQ back in Dec., which provides our company with additional federal past performance, as well as critically important contract vehicles, like Alliant II, to drive our continued success.“
ExecutiveBiz: Following the success of your recent quarterly results, what were the key factors that led to that company-wide performance and how will you continue to work to capitalize on that success moving forward?
Denise Oberndorf: “Capgemini delivered an excellent start to the year and reported a record-setting quarter in terms of our growth. In the first quarter of 2022, we grew upwards of 17.7 percent.
This is our fourth straight quarter of accomplishing double-digit growth and clearly demonstrates the change in Capgemini’s growth profile and our ability to gain market share.
We take pride in putting our people first, being client-centric, and working together. Our impressive results prove the success of this approach .”
ExecutiveBiz: How does your company ensure long-term success for your workforce to drive value for your employees as you continue to face the uphill challenge to recruit and retain the best talent in the federal marketplace?
Denise Oberndorf: “Our brand is strong. Capgemini is attracting and developing the best talent in a very competitive market because we have institutionalized the concept of people first. We believe our reputation and success is directly attributed to the quality and happiness of our people.
Therefore, we strive every day to deliver an environment and organization that will allow all our people to reach their full potential and personal satisfaction. We are deliberate in continuing to evaluate ourselves, our processes, and people programs.”
ExecutiveBiz: In recent years, what are some of the biggest improvements you’ve seen in the way we talk and think about innovation across the federal sector since the rise of cybersecurity, AI/ML, 5G and other emerging technologies?
Denise Oberndorf: “Technology is evolving at an extremely rapid pace and the procurement cycle alone can slow the federal government’s ability to implement emerging technologies as fast as needed to stay ahead of the curve. Some of the biggest improvements in recent years have been around the procurement process.
The government is looking for quicker procurement cycles by leveraging Other Transactional Authorities (OTAs). The other improving trend has been the government looking toward more non-traditional DoD firms, like Capgemini, a firm with a lot of experience with these new technologies in the commercial sector.
Leveraging firms with commercial experience often means working with an integrator or a service provider with more overall experience. That can also drive even greater efficiency and better overall value to the federal government.”
ExecutiveBiz: With federal agencies working to implement the latest trends in technology such as AI, 5G, cloud and many others, what are your thoughts on the success and challenges that government agencies are dealing with to stay ahead of innovation to establish the U.S. as THE global leader?
Denise Oberndorf: “Great question! Recently, I led a panel discussion with senior technology leaders from the federal government to chat about this very topic. Not only does the federal government need to stay at the edge of technology, but they need resources and processes that support rapid learning and agility.
With an organization the size of the federal government, this is no easy feat. The U.S. government will need to overcome budget constraints and delays, which is likely going to include competing with strong brands to hire and retain employees, as well as make some trade-off decisions in their future investments.
Despite that fact, the government is driving and becoming more innovative with its programs to overcome these challenges. Defense market programs like the Kessel Run and the U.S. Army’s Software Factory are great examples.”
ExecutiveBiz: What are your strategic goals for the coming year? What do you hope to accomplish and any new markets that you’re keeping an eye on in the federal sector?
Denise Oberndorf: “Capgemini is a global leader in consulting, digital transformation, technology and engineering services. Naturally, I am very focused on forward-thinking clients in the defense and intelligence markets.
Clients are looking for a company that has implemented digital solutions for large organizations and values innovation. In the coming year, we’ll be building out our strategy and developing a plan for how to bring Capgemini’s technology-driven engineering solutions and capabilities to the federal market.“
ExecutiveBiz: What are the core values that are important to your company’s culture? How has your team developed its workflow and ability to drive success in such a competitive market?
Denise Oberndorf: “Capgemini’s team of professionals are spread across over 50 countries, but we all share the same seven values. These central core values to our company culture are honesty, boldness, trust, freedom, fun, modesty, and team spirit.
The energy at Capgemini is remarkable. There is a flair for entrepreneurship while remaining modest in mind. Our teams and individuals are empowered to make decisions. Our differences in culture and in opinion are respected. Ultimately, we like to have fun! This creates a positive and collaborative team spirit and therefore business environment that fuels our success for Capgemini and our customers!”