ING Direct's Simon Andrews has taken out the top honour at the third annual iTnews Benchmark Awards, being named CIO of the Year in front of a crowd of his peers in Melbourne last night.
Andrews was presented the award at the Benchmark Awards gala dinner at Melbourne's Grand Hyatt, after winning his category of Finance.
The Benchmark Awards are held annually at the CIO Strategy Summit and recognise Australia’s outstanding IT professionals, as judged by the iTnews panel and CIO peers.
The field of finalists this year was a highly competitive one which included some of Australia's largest organisations and IT shops.
Andrews stood out for the ambition and innovation he showed in a gutsy overhaul of his company's entire IT infrastructure.
Andrews' project forged new ground for the Australian financial services sector and provided an example of innovative thinking and future-proofing for others to follow.
A highly ambitious effort saw Andrews' team transfer its entire computing, network and storage infrastructure into a private cloud over one weekend, and brutally replatform or replace every technology running the bank in the process.
Accepting the award, Andrews encouraged his fellow CIOs to "go hard or go home".
'I really feel that it does make you humble when you consider how hard people worked, and what you did was make space for people, and what you did was make sure they didn't get caught up in board room discussions and discussions of money and things like that, so they can turn things into wonderful successes."
Other winners on the night included:
- Healthcare CIO of the Year: Peter O'Halloran, National Blood Authority
- Education CIO of the Year: Sendur Kathir, University of Melbourne
- Government CIO of the Year: Gary Sterrenberg, Human Services
- Utilities CIO of the Year: Paul McManus, Domain
- Finance CIO of the Year: Simon Andrews, ING Direct
- Retail CIO of the Year: Ajay Bhatia, Carsales
- Industrial CIO of the Year: Ben Rogers, Rio Tinto
The Benchmark award ceremony was held at the 7th CIO Strategy Summit.