Brisbane City Council has ended a four-month hunt for a new chief information officer, signing on former Aurora Energy IT chief Sarma Rajaraman.
The BCC, which employs 7700 fulltime equivalent staff and oversees a municipality of 1.1 million residents, is on a mission to make its ICT more efficient and boost the internal satisfaction of staff with the technology services it delivers.
Rajaraman will formally join the council on Monday as part of a five year contract.
He comes to Brisbane after a spell in Hobart heading up IT for the Tasmanian energy retailer and distributor Aurora.
He has also held CIO roles at Genworth Financial and Real Insurance, in addition to several consultancy roles for technology vendors.
A spokesperson for the Brisbane City Council said more than 21 years experience across energy, retail and financial services industry sectors made Rajaraman stand out against the field of other applicants.
The new CIO replaces Nick Bryant, who departed from the council in August this year for personal reasons.
His departure coincided with a critical period for the council, which is reaching the closing stages of a $353 million SAP consolidation project called business and system efficiency (BaSE). The BaSE initiative will see 62 legacy council systems replaced with a single ERP platform.
Finance and procurement functions were due to go live in September this year.
The council’s latest annual report revealed it is also working to build up new customer relationship management systems as part of its customer experience transformation (CET).
Additionally, the BCC has commenced controversial staffing reforms that will see 50 positions outsourced to HCL Technologies.
“Council will save ratepayers almost $8 million over five years with the outsourcing of technical computer programming and internal software management operations,” it said earlier this year.
The strategy attracted the ire of unions and a small number protested the move when it was confirmed in February.