Benchmark Awards: Domino's, McDonalds or RedBalloon?

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Benchmark Awards: Domino's, McDonalds or RedBalloon?

Judges notes: Who will be Retail CIO of the Year?

Technology leaders from Domino's Pizza, McDonalds and RedBalloon have been chosen as finalists in the retail category for the CIO Benchmark Awards.

One will be chosen as Retail CIO of the Year in 2012 at the Benchmark Awards ceremony on February 26, and all three are in the running to be crowned Australia's 'CIO of the Year'.

Australian CIOs and senior IT managers are welcome to cast their vote on our CIO-only LinkedIn Group prior to close of business on February 1, 2013.

Today we take a look at the submissions in the retail sector.

Not surprisingly, most of the submissions in the retail category involved either data analytics or cloud computing.

The savings from retail use of public cloud were notable, as were several other benefits such as enhanced recovery.

The submissions we received were a marked contrast to the chronic technology underinvestment we’ve otherwise seen in the Australian retail landscape — it's good to see some challengers making a fist of it.

We have recorded our judges notes on video to aid the voting process:


The finalists:

Wayne McMahon, CIO, Domino's Pizza Enterprise
Project: Digital solution migration into Telstra cloud
Domino's Pizza has moved its applications into an IaaS relationship with Telstra, migrating all of its applications and underlying infrastructure in under ten weeks, without incurring any downtime. The project has led to $1 million in capex savings and a ten percent boost in online orders.
"Substantial, calculable savings from move to a hosted model."
"Domino's has demonstrated that it can now bring a new range of mobile and social offerings to market faster."
"A big and relatively risky bet on the cloud that appears to have paid off."

Henry Shiner, CIO, McDonald's Australia 
Project: ANZ Employee Engagement Strategy
McDonald's Australia invested in an online portal for its 125,000 crew to apply for new jobs, learn new skills during orientation, view rosters, payslips and tasks and recieve messages from management. The system is handling 1.9 billion logons a month, saving the company 65 percent of its staff education budget.
"A solid implementation of an employee and manager self-service portal."
"Known for robust training programs, it's fitting McDonald's took these processes to the digital world with some gusto."
"Given McDonalds' Gen Y workforce, I'm only surprised it didn't deploy more of a social networking component."
Paul Keen, GM of technology, RedBalloon 
Project: Amazon Web Services (AWS) Migration
RedBalloon combined a move from local hosting to a more flexible cloud solution at the same time as it undertook a 'Circle the Customer' data analytics project to better track the online activity of its users. The analytics play required a huge increase in processing — from 17 servers to over 150 — but the design of the AWS solution allowed the company to make this leap with a 40 percent reduction in costs.
"Innovative use of a cloud solution, powering down servers during off-peak."
"Interesting to note the processing overhead involved with knowing more about your customers."
"A high degree of risk now that RedBalloon's entire business runs in the cloud."
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