Editor’s note: This week, ISACA Now’s “Faces of ISACA” series is highlighting female members who have made outstanding contributions to the technology workforce leading up to International Women’s Day on 8 March. Today, we highlight Satoko Nagaoka, senior consultant with IIJ Global Solutions Inc. (Japan).
Join @isacanews, @justinembone @observacious & @shyama_rose for an International Women’s Day Twitter Chat on 8 March, 1-2 PM EST. Have your questions and comments ready. Use #ISACAChat and #IWD2018 to be a part of the live conversation.
Satoko Nagaoka’s interest in pursuing a career in technology was sparked as a child by reading a story about a robot.
“Until then, I only knew of robots with monotonous jobs like in a factory, but then I had a dream that I could talk and make friends with the robot,” Nagaoka said. “After that, I saw scenes where robots communicate with things other than people in movies and animation, and I think that gave me the idea of 'I want to make a robot myself.'"
A lifelong fascination with technology was sparked. Nagaoka opted to focus her studies on information systems engineering and considers joining Hewlett Packard Japan in 1998 as “the big turning point” in her career.
“HP taught me about global business as well as advanced technical skills,” Nagaoka said. “There were equal opportunities for men and women, and I was given the opportunity to work with a foreign colleague and take on more responsibilities. We set up a collaborative program with business partners and set up seminars and support desks to support their activities. I was able to receive professional enrichment every day because there were many colleagues who became role models.”
Nagaoka linked up with another large global enterprise in 2001, becoming network engineer with AT&T Japan. She is proud of the strides she helped the organization make.
“Overall order management of the whole Asia Pacific region was done in Japan, and this order management team operated on paper basis,” Nagaoka said. “I felt inefficiency in its operation method and created a dedicated system for the team. As a result, business operated more smoothly and generating the data necessary for report creation and business analysis became possible.”
These days, Nagaoka is senior consultant with Tokyo-based IIJ Global Solutions Inc., where she is in charge of quality control and optimizing business processes. She is the leader of ISO 9001 Secretariat and also contributes to ISO 9001 and ISMS internal auditor work.
“In my current position, it is pleasant to not only objectively manage work and quality, but also to be able to optimize the business process with my own hands,” Nagaoka said. “Instead of automating complicated business processes as they are, I propose to simplify and optimize the process in advance, reduce the number of black boxes and ease the work of those who do business.”
Nagaoka is an active supporter of ISACA’s SheLeadsTech program and plans to travel to Chicago, Illinois, USA to attend an upcoming SheLeadsTech event at North America CACS. She is optimistic that more women can make inroads into the technology workforce.
“I think that women and companies can grow together if the number of talented people who actually become women’s mentors and role models increases,” Nagaoka said.
Nagaoka has ISACA’s CISA credential, and said ISACA’s benefit to her career has extended well beyond providing certification.
“In particular, from the perspective of security and governance, ISACA provided useful information in my career development,” Nagaoka said. “There also are many women on ISACA committees, and they encourage me by introducing me to many role models.”
In addition to her professional commitments, Nagaoka takes advantage of the wealth of cultural opportunities in her hometown. She already is excited about the 2020 Summer Olympic coming to Tokyo, and loves participating in ballet lessons and Tokyo’s art community.
“Touching art means letting out stress,” Nagaoka said. “It enhances my inspiration, which is often used for my work.”
Going forward, Nagaoka wants to learn more about artificial intelligence (AI), and especially its impact on audit professionals.
“ISACA Tokyo Chapter has an AI research group, and it is very exciting to participate in the research as a member of it,” she said.