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How to stay relaxed when you're leading a revolution

By George Nott | Aug. 18, 2016
It is not just the technology that CIO Tim Thurman is changing at the Australian Securities Exchange

Kupper resigned in March amid an investigation into an alleged bribery payment made during his time as CEO of gaming firm Tabcorp. His replacement Dominic Stevens started this month.

The technology plan will not change as a result, Thurman says.

“[Kupper] was very much a key supporter of the tech strategy,” says Thurman. “But nothing’s changed really. I’m sure [Stevens] is going to have the same drive and goals as Elmer and I’m looking forward to that.

“I’m looking forward to getting into some of the detail and explaining to him exactly what we’re doing. I think it’ll be all good.”

Cool stuff and culture

The result of the overhaul, the ASX says, will help it deliver greater innovation, efficiency and liquidity to customers, and strengthen the position of the ASX as one of the world’s leading exchange groups.

Thurman has his eye on the data it will open up and the ‘cool stuff’ that will come out of it.

“That’s the add-on to deploying all these technologies and sun-setting all the legacy tech, is we’re bringing all that data together,” he says.

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“When we’re done in a couple of years the data will be consolidated into a point where it’s accessible, we can take a look at it and start doing some cool stuff with it. Because that’s the crown jewel. Our data is the crown jewel.”

Thurman also hopes there will be lasting change to the way the technology team, and the wider business operates too.

“I’m hoping that the people, once we’re done, will have changed and come along on the journey also. To the point where were talking an Agile language on a normal basis, and also the agility of the ASX is across the entire company not just technology. Which is happening by the way…” he says.

“When we actually build a new project there’s no debating how we want to run, it’s a question of do we want it hybrid agile? How many sprints are we going to have? Backlogs? Colocation? Even to the point where we invite our vendors and partners to come colocate with us at various stages of the project.”

Always tomorrow

Despite the huge task at hand, Thurman says he never feels stressed and never gets rushed.

“I like the idea of taking the time. There’s always tomorrow. I don’t like to be forced into a decision when I know I’ve got the time. If you need to take an extra day, take the extra day or even two, three days. If you need to go talk to our clients let’s put the brakes on and get a town hall going or a customer forum or our account managers on the street and talking to our clients.


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