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CIO100 2017 #31-100: Shayne Tong, Genesis Energy

  • Name Shayne Tong
  • Title CIO (interim)
  • Company Genesis Energy
  • Commenced Role March 2016 to February 2017
  • Reporting Line Jennifer Cherrington-Mowat, Executive General Manager, Technology and Digital
  • Technology Function 140 IT and digital staff
  • Related

    When Shayne Tong took on a year-long stint as interim CIO at Genesis Energy, he was given a remit to lead a high performing team across IT operations, agile digital delivery, IT transformation, big data and analytics and partnering with the business on lean digital startups.

    The result was a raft of programmes from core system replacements and new capabilities that support the company’s ‘cloud first strategy’ and moving towards a digital business model.

    These include the migration of 400 servers into Revera datacentre (IaaS), the implementation of a Mulesoft Integration Platform, Salesforce CRM and Field Services, re-platforming of customer web portals and multiple releases of customer mobile apps.

    We have implemented digital workplace technologies leveraging the Microsoft Enterprise Cloud suite: Microsoft Windows 10, Office 365, Skype of Business, and Yammer, says Tong.

    Genesis Energy also leverages Microsoft Azure’s cloud computing platform and services for its digital, Internet of Things, and big data and analytics platforms.

    Emphasising innovation

    The technology team also pushed for tools and processes that will drive innovation programmes across the group.

    Over the past year, Genesis Energy also established graduate teams that is focused on automation and innovation within Technology, to work closely with the business to identify and implement digital solutions.

    Tong says the technology driving conversations within the business are around new and emerging technologies like AI, machine learning and chat bots, and how Genesis can leverage these technologies, optimise them and be innovative.

    “With rapid prototyping and strategic partnering, a solution can be implemented within four weeks, from concept to working software,” says Tong.

    During the year, the company has set up agile delivery teams,” says Tong.

    "In technology, we have core Scrum/Squad teams with experienced scrum masters. We have also embedded other technology roles, like architects and information security, into the agile delivery process.”

    Genesis Energy is moving some of its delivery streams from project agile teams into product scaled agile teams, to create continuous integration and delivery, says Tong. “There has been a move to autonomous teams that can take idea from ‘concept to cash’ and implement solutions.”

    Tong has helped organised the company’s first internal hackathon, and is involved in forming an “innovation neighbourhood” with like-minded organisations including Datacom, Foodstuffs North Island and Auckland Airport.

    The winnng team at the first Genesis Energy hackathon.
    The winnng team at the first Genesis Energy hackathon.

    The working title of the group is “Manukau Innovation Neighborhood”, following the example of the Wynyard Innovation Neighbourhood set up by technology focused companies in Auckland’s Viaduct.

    ''Manukau Innovation Neighbourhood exists to bring together the best and brightest minds in our local area. The purpose is to share knowledge, experience, ideas, and opportunities. Key focus areas are security, agile for enterprise, data, benchmarking and connecting with startups,'' says Tong.

    The core group has already organised a cybersecurity forum, and more sessions are being planned for upcoming months.

    Rodney Fletcher

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