A key theme in the submissions for the Utilities category in the Benchmark Awards this year was competition, and how to react to larger and faster-acting rivals.
Our three finalists all proved their chops in the face of adversity and set their businesses up to compete head on with the dominant players in their markets.
Our finalists in the telecommunications, gas, water and media category are:
Vincent Dempsey - Vodafone
Vodafone has made significant strides in recent years to shake a lingering negative perception around its quality of service, and its latest effort is no exception. The telco leveraged AWS alongside agile delivery to offer its customers a range of self-service capabilities in order to increase its net promoter score and hand more power to its users to manage their own accounts.
The approach has cut down the number of calls made to its help centre, reduced the amount of time taken to deploy new products by hours, and significantly boosted revenues gained through allowing customers to find and purchase a number of products through the portal.
Paul McManus - Domain
in the highly competitive online real estate market, Domain was forced to look at how it could bring the fight to a rival with many years head start. The business opted to untether Domain from the broader Fairfax tech team to allow McManus and team to run free towards the DevOps and continuous delivery model that is now allowing the business to move much faster than before.
The result has been a fundamental change in the way the business develops software - Domain is now pushing out over 100 changes into production per month compared to between eight and ten previously.
Kelly Ferguson - Mi9
Ninemsn homepage redesign
Faced with more flexible and responsive rivals, Mi9 needed to act quickly to avoid losing competitive relevance in the cut-throat media market.
CIO Kelly Ferguson shifted away from legacy systems towards AWS to develop a new homepage using a Node.js network application platform and modern development practices.
The result is a new homepage - which is critical to NineMSN's business - that addresses reader and editorial staff pain points, which Ferguson's team built in half the time it previously would have taken.
Special thanks to our sponsors: The Australian Computer Society, Dimension Data Learning Solutions, Samsung, Brother, Intel and Dynatrace. Winners will be announced at the 7th CIO Strategy Summit to be held in February at the Grand Hyatt Melbourne.