Meet the man charged with transforming Vocus

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Meet the man charged with transforming Vocus
Justin Haddrick

Will lead challenging integration drive.

Vocus has brought in long-time transformation executive Justin Haddrick to take charge of its own newly-created transformation office and solve the problems the telco has had integrating a slew of recent acquisitions.

Haddrick has a CV full of transformation projects dating as far back as the 90s.

Before joining Vocus last month Haddrick spent almost a year helping Momentum Energy introduce a customer-centric mindset with the help of new cloud technologies, analytics, and customer portals.

Prior to that he was part of an enterprise-wide simplification at Sensis for two years, preceded by a more than five-year stint at NAB that included work on its Nextgen core banking transformation and MLC systems and process overhaul, among other initiatives.

Haddrick's history also includes transformation gigs at the likes of Bupa, CBA, PwC, and ANZ Bank.

Vocus created its new group transformation office in a March shake-up that saw its former CTO Chris Deere depart.

The restructure shifted Vocus' technology team into the transformation office as part of an effort to centralise all the technology and transformation programs across the business.

It was sparked by difficulties integrating the myriad acquisitions Vocus has made in recent years.

In May Vocus revealed merging the likes of Nextgen NetworksAmcom, and M2 into the wider group was not going to plan.

The admission sent its share price crashing. A $100 million profit downgrade - the combination of higher spend needed to meet customer needs during the integration drive and a lack of finance visibility thanks to disparate systems - was also partially to blame.

"We've obviously got an expanded platform now and greater diversity of products, but we can't deliver a unified experience on a single provisioning platform. So depending on the product [customers] are buying, they're going to get a different experience and be dealing with different teams," Vocus CEO Geoff Horth said at the time.

"We've had to keep adding costs to manage these manual customer journeys, so we're not recognising revenue at the rate we'd forecast.

"It is also making our organisation not recognise general efficiencies around networks and the technology environment."

The business had spent more time on the "useful many" integration projects rather than the "vital few", Horth said, meaning the build of a single provisioning platform for customers, and the consolidation of various ERP systems, had fallen behind expectations.

The transformation office is only intended to be a short-term, two-year arrangement to centrally lead Vocus' integration efforts.The telco plans to review the structure and requirements of the business once the integration drive is complete. 

Vocus said Haddrick was a "globally experienced leader" with a "long history of successfully delivering large-scale business and technology transformations".

He will sit at the executive table alongside new chief information officer Simon Smith.

Vocus is the current target of a bidding war between private equity firms KKR and Afffiliate Equity Partners. Both firms have been granted the opportunity to conduct due dilligence on the telco.

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