Being a consistent standard-bearer for world-class public transport systems, the MTR Corporation (MTR) is no stranger to awards. Almost all rail operators and city-wide transport networks cast envious looks at the MTR for its efficiency, quality service levels and sheer reliability to shift more than five million passengers daily with smooth precision and metronomic timing.
Underpinning the rail operation is its equally world-class IT operation which is overseen by Ted Suen, winner of the 2013 Hong Kong CIO Award for the large enterprise category, organized by Computerworld Hong Kong and CIO Connect.
Head of IT Suen and his team have in the last 18 months managed a portfolio of more than 60 projects with total project costs of around HK$120m. "All these projects have enabled the business to achieve its goals and have generated significant tangible benefits" noted Suen.
Vision and execution
There are more than 100 business application systems in the MTR which serve nine business functional units within the company. The IT organization has 130 permanent employees tasked to provide the most cost effective business solutions to the corporation, as well as leverage the latest emerging technologies to enhance business users' and customers' experience and satisfaction.
Suen has served as the Head of IT over the last two years and continued to push the technology envelope while continuing its already industry-leading technology practices. His win in this year's Hong Kong CIO Awards was based on his completeness of vision and clear ability to execute the key objective of transforming the IT organization into a truly business-focused operation.
"Ted demonstrated the characteristics of a CIO with a well balanced approach to the many facets of a complex role. He also has a strong grasp on the metrics that demonstrate the business value he and his team is generating," noted the awards judging committee. "Ted also participates in learning initiatives widely — a key characteristic of the top CIO is that they know they can still learn more. The judges feel Ted is a worthy winner of the Large Enterprise CIO of the Year award 2013."
Suen's award win also comes on the back of a number of other awards wins: the 2012 China Top 5 CIO Awards, organized by China CEO CIO / IT Manager magazine; 2013 Best Value CIO Award, organized by China IT Value and Business Value Magazine; and the 2013 Outstanding Performance of IT Awards Excellence, organized by e-Zone magazine.
While the MTR has been prominent in rolling out a number of mobile apps and innovative customer-facing features, the success of these capabilities can be attributed to the back-end transformation that Suen has been implementing within IT at the MTR.
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