NBN Co taps former Telstra chief as CIO

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NBN Co taps former Telstra chief as CIO
John McInerney.

NBN Co will need to eat its own dogfood.

NBN Co has plugged a significant hole in its executive ranks with the appointment of John McInerney as the organisation’s chief information officer.

McInerney steps into the role vacated by Claire Rawlins on August 24. His appointment, which was revealed by the AFR, begins on December 3 and follows a three month search.

He previously worked as chief information officer at Telstra, then jumped ship to HP, where he was the vice president of the ITO portfolio.

McInerney's appointment comes at a critical time for the NBN, noted telecoms analyst Paul Budde.

“It’s not about telecommunications infrastructure,” Budde said. “His role at HP indicates this is very much about the internal IT infrastructure which runs on top of the network.”

Budde said with the NBN being promoted as means of connecting and accessing cloud computing, data centres and storage, the NBN company needs to be at the very bleeding edge when it comes to its own in-house systems.

“It’s going to be a challenging position because the technology is changing so rapidly,” Budde said. “He needs to be able to promote what the NBN is capable of, and the NBN Co needs to be a reflection of what he preaches.”

McInerney’s predecessor, Claire Rawlins, was NBN Co’s first CIO. Rawlins was appointed in November 2009, just three months after the company was established to build and operate the National Broadband Network.

Rawlins had advocated a “buy, not build” policy which saw the organisation use cloud providers for internal systems. Business processes were also designed around existing technologies.

At the time of her resignation, an NBN spokesperson said she left to pursue other opportunities. 

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