Reports to: Chief executive officer
Size of IS shop: 180
Mobile PCs: 2000
Hand-held devices: 700
Total screens: 8500
PC environment: Windows XP, Dell, IBM
Server environment: Windows 2003; Solaris; Linux; AIX; Compaq; Dell;
iSeries, pSeries; Sun
DBMS: DB2, Oracle, SQL
Address: 640 Great South Road, Manukau City, Auckland
Key IS projects this year: SAP deployment in the US; Integration
projects in the US; production planning projects for building supplies
CARTER HOLT HARVEY was purchased for NZ$3.3 billion by
entrepreneur Graham Hart in 2006 and now comprises about 40 per
cent of Hart’s Rank Group. CIO Pat O’Connell says a softening economy
exacerbated by a challenging export market is the main challenge
faced by Carter Holt Harvey, with revenue growth and cost containment
in a diffi cult market as key business objectives.
“Accurate information, fast information and optimised planning are
all important to the business, and are processes in which ICT has a
signifi cant impact. ICT helps us control fi nancials and ensures good
matching of production to customer demand. It also allows us to
develop strong working capital control,” says O’Connell.
He says the economic slowdown is unlikely to affect the ICT budget
for Carter Holt Harvey or its existing ICT contracts with vendors.
“We run pretty lean anyway; we can’t take much more out.”
He says while vendor mergers and ongoing acquisitions are of
concern, as this creates fewer players in the market, the impact is
minimised for organisations once a major application supplier is
“Once you join with a particular vendor, you are locked in with them
regardless. The cost of exit is pretty high,” says O’Connell.
In the coming 12 months Carter Holt Harvey will continue a number
of existing ICT projects in the areas of ERP, business intelligence and
fi nancial systems upgrades. Server virtualisation and extensions to
wireless and cellular mobile technologies are also ongoing.
Key ICT projects by cost include SAP deployment and integration
projects in the US, as well as production planning projects for the
building supplies group.
O’Connell says Carter Holt Harvey has not made a signifi cant investment
in VoIP to date, but this year will begin to evaluate the potential
benefi ts of unified communications applications. Work on e-channels
is minimal however, as Carter Holt Harvey has observed only light
interest in B2B e-business models from suppliers and business partners,
“It’s very low level; just a small number of business partners and
transactions,” he says.
Like many organisations this year, Carter Holt Harvey continues to
upgrade disaster recovery and business continuity systems.
O’Connell says all ICT functions are conducted in-house with
the exception of SAP development and support, which is entirely
outsourced to former Carter Holt Harvey subsidiary Oxygen Business
Carter Holt Harvey is “reasonably satisfied” with the telecommunication
services it receives in New Zealand, though less so for Australia,
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