Within its New Zealand publishing arm, Fairfax Media publishes two national, nine daily and more than 60 community newspapers, more than 25 magazines, and the market leading website, stuff.co.nz.
2011 was a year of reassessment for the IT team, following the second of two major Christchurch earthquakes. The company’s publishing operations were largely spared due to a significant IT transformation project, called Overdrive, led by then group operations manager Nigel Bailey. By the start of 2011, Fairfax Media’s numerous legacy systems had been decommissioned and enterprise systems had been centralised, allowing for significant collaboration among disparate offices.
Overdrive has transformed the media giant from a legacy mentality to a platform-agnostic multimedia focus. As a result, the company’s application count has been reduced by more than 55 percent. Group server room numbers were cut by 87 percent, physical servers by 45 percent, and desktop models by 60 percent.
This year, further optimisation of virtualisation deployments will continue, while VoIP will be rolled out across further site migrations. Upgrades to CRM will be a focus, and investments will carry on in the areas of cloud computing, social media, ERP, unified communications, wireless, business continuity/disaster recovery, e-business and mobility.
Top projects, according to Bailey, will involve further deployment of mobility solutions across the organisation using Citrix technology as the prime delivery mechanism, developments in business intelligence, and a review of telecommunications systems and procedures.