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Post-modern CTO

Divina Paredes | Feb. 18, 2013
Vodafone NZ's Sandra Pickering employs 'ruthless prioritisation' to tackle redoubtable tasks.

Technology does enable the flexibility [and] it can be a trap," she adds. "You tend to be working more."

"Experience has shown me that working longer hours doesn't necessarily get better results either. You can work smarter, not longer.

"As an industry we are starting to change our attitude towards that, trusting that when people leave the office to go early for personal commitments, they can still get the job done. They have got access to technologies that will enable them to do that. At the end, performance has to be judged on outcomes." 

Sidebar: Ahead of the game

Vodafone CIO David Moss says the key to IT success is to drive efficiency, as cost is always going to be a problem in every industry. 

"I like to use the word efficiency, rather than cost reduction, because sometimes you can do stupid things when you're just trying to reduce costs. But if you're trying to drive efficiency, then you produce sustainable cost reduction and for me that is really important," says Moss, who stepped up to his current role in late 2012 from general manager of service transformation.

Moss says there are five "imperatives" to his current role, and these apply to every CIO.

Market leadership with speed is first on the list, and in the case of Vodafone, how to do so using technology. 

The second is to provide new initiatives to market. Vodafone has been a great innovator over the last 10 to 15 years, he says, citing Prepay Freebies as an example of a product resonating with the market.

The third ticket is better customer experience. Vodafone is committed to ensuring it adds differentiation in the customer experience, focusing on responding to customers effectively and providing great service, says Moss. 

The fourth area is what he classifies as "a higher level focus" for IT people. 

"There are various times when the business will go through what I call big changes where you're just not incrementally changing, but you need to do big change either to respond to the market place or different environmental conditions." 

The fifth is creating and building a sustainable, high performing team. "Because we work in such a complex environment, communication and trust and skill are things that really make the difference, and it is the people that we have in the teams that make the difference and enable you to do some fantastic things," says Moss.

"We will always be in the position where there are heaps of pressure and heaps of demands but we need to make sure that people are really enjoying themselves and being motivated and feeling empowered to do what they can do."

-- Sim Ahmed


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