In Conversation with Christian Gosselin
Vice-President, Business Engineering – CGI
Founded in 1976, CGI is one of the largest IT and business process services providers in the world. Operating in hundreds of locations across the globe, CGI helps clients become customer-centric digital organizations. They deliver high-quality business and IT consulting, systems integration and transformational outsourcing services, complemented by more than 150 IP-based solutions, to support clients in transforming into digital enterprises end to end. CGI works with clients around the world through a unique client proximity and best-fit global delivery model to accelerate their digital transformation, ensure on-time, within budget delivery, and drive competitive advantage in today’s increasingly digital world.
We recently chatted with Christian Gosselin, Vice-President, Business Engineering at CGI, to learn more about the company and what attracted them to become one of SIPP’s newest members.
How long has CGI been in Victoria/South Island?
CGI has had a local presence in Victoria since 2004 when we acquired GDS and Associates Systems Ltd. (it goes back to 1984 when GDS was founded).
Our Victoria office currently employs around 200 full time IT and business professionals (whom we call members) and provides work to about 100 additional people if we include people employed by our partners who work for our dozens of clients in the BC public and private sector. In BC, we have experienced double-digit growth for the past six years.
Tell me a little bit about CGI and your role with the company.
CGI was founded in 1976 and is now Canada’s largest IT and business process services provider with more than 10,000 members in Canada and 70,000 worldwide.
As Vice-President, Business Engineering, I lead a team of professionals who work with our sales and service delivery teams to build and deliver innovative solution proposals for our clients in BC and across Western Canada.
At CGI, everything we do is centered around maintaining the best equilibrium between our three stakeholders:
- Clients: Be recognized as their partner and expert of choice
- Members: Provide an exciting environment in which to build a career and company we can be proud of
- Shareholders: Be recognized as a well-managed, financially strong company providing superior returns
What attracted CGI to the South Island Prosperity Project? What is the value for your organization?
In line with our client proximity model, CGI members live and work in the same communities as our clients. So, it’s important for us to support the well-being of our local communities and help make them better. In Victoria alone, CGI is actively involved with about a dozen organizations in which our members continually contribute time and money.
When we first heard about the Prosperity Project, we quickly realized that we shared many of the same goals. More specifically:
- Working with local businesses (to complement our services to our government and enterprise clients)
- Attracting new businesses from outside the region (new potential clients)
- Attracting and retaining high caliber talent (to sustain our growth).
We believe that a strong, diversified economy in South Vancouver Island is good for everyone so it made perfect sense to join forces with SIPP and its partners to increase our collective chances of success. A rising tide lifts all boats as we say!
Are there any SIPP projects that were of particular interest to CGI?
We have started working with SIPP and its partners on the Government of Canada’s Smart Cities Challenge. Through the Smart Cities Challenge, the Government will work in collaboration with cities and communities that are ready to innovate and take risks, providing financial and in-kind support for their smart cities transformation.
CGI has partnered with cities and regions around the world on a number of smart city initiatives in:
- Citizen participation and safety
- Energy and asset management
- Government administration
- Health and human services
- Transport and tourism
Our goal is to bring some of that global knowledge and expertise to the table.
We think the partnership approach that SIPP has taken for this initiative is truly unique and innovative and the CGI team in Victoria is quite excited about helping make this project a success.