Telstra's IT team faces restructure

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Telstra's IT team faces restructure

Flags "consolidation" of shared and online services.

Telstra plans to make "a broad range of changes" to its internal IT group following an executive-level restructure announced last week.

In a statement to the stock exchange (pdf) on Wednesday, chief executive David Thodey said the executive restructure would "sharpen the company's focus on customers and position Telstra for industry changes".

Telstra said it would "centralise key internal business support functions that do not directly serve customers, clarifying accountabilities and freeing up customer-facing teams to provide outstanding customer service".

Chief Operations Officer Brendon Riley yesterday said he would reorganise Telstra's operations team to "achieve a greater collective focus and alignment of effort across our business".

In an internal memo obtained by iTnews, Riley noted that Telstra was "looking at a broad range of changes" within its IT group to support both internal and customers' requirements.

"This will include aligning the team to the Telstra business units to provide a single point of accountability for our internal colleagues, a consolidation of shared and online services," he wrote.

"The IT team will continue to be led by [CIO] Patrick Eltridge."

Riley revealed plans for the IT group to absorb enterprise architecture functions, previously within the remit of Architecture Online & Media (AO&M), and consolidating all field-based operations roles into a single Service Delivery team.

A newly created Customer Enablement group was tasked with activating process functions across the company, after Thodey charged the operations team with providing all backend services for consumer customers.

Riley also planned to establish a single, client delivery function for enterprise customers through Telstra's Network Applications and Services (NAS) and Enterprise & Government (E&G) teams.

Meanwhile, a new NBN and Commercial Operations unit was charged with "delivering our NBN obligations and shaping the future role of Operations as these obligations are fulfilled".

Telstra's Architecture Online and Media (AO&M) unit would be reorganised to include two new lines of business: Cloud Computing and Media.

Riley said the cloud team would focus on infrastructure design and integration of Telstra's cloud offerings in close collaboration with product management and NAS teams.

A strategy and business operations division was charged with providing "strategy and support for Operations".

Telstra was also working to consolidate the data extraction and provision, reporting and business planning functions of Telstra's Operations and Finance divisions, Riley wrote.

Executive re-shuffle

Thodey appointed four new executives last week: Chief Customer Officer Gordon Ballantyne; Chief Marketing Officer Mark Buckman; Wholesale Group Managing Director Stuart Lee; and Applications and Ventures Group head Deena Shiff.

Riley said yesterday that the restructure was "a significant step in the implementation of the company's long-term strategy and Operations has an important role".

"I believe we have a unique opportunity to build on this and play a key role in helping the company win customers, improve customer service, simplify the business and create new growth businesses.

"My leadership team will work through how we best service the new structure over coming weeks, including whether any changes are required to existing teams or work practices."

The re-shuffle was the latest in a series of changes pursued by chief David Thodey since taking the top job two years ago.

The telco cut about 1280 senior and middle management roles in two rounds of cuts in July and October last year.

It rebranded as a "sales and marketing" - rather than engineering - company, and had also set about restructuring its operations and processes to be more customer service-centric.

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