by Byron Connolly

Sarah Harland appointed Suncorp CIO

May 30, 2016
CareersRisk Management

Suncorp Group has appointed Sarah Harland as its new CIO, coming across from Medibank where she spent the last five months as executive general manager, technology and operations, based in Melbourne.

She has replaced Matt Pancino, who left Suncorp in April to take up the position as CIO of Commonwealth Bank’s wealth and retail divisions. Pancino is reporting to the bank’s tech chief, David Whiteing.

Starting on September 1 and based in Sydney, Harland will lead the group’s technology and business intelligence strategy, with responsibility for all digital enablement, cloud and infrastructure, protective services, chief data office, projects and programs, and the innovation labs function.

Harland told CIO Australia that the role at Suncorp is a great opportunity for a CIO, and a change in her personal circumstances meant she wanted to be based in Sydney.

“I really made a great start at Medibank but this opportunity came along at a time when I am looking to move to Sydney so I’ve embraced it.”

In an interview with the Australian Financial Review last week, Suncorp boss, Michael Cameron discussed the organisation’s digital transformation plan, which involves creating a networked digital marketplace. This makes it easier for the company’s 14 brands to cross sell to each other’s customers.

Harland said she was looking forward to building on the positive momentum around Suncorp’s digital offering and strategy.

“It’s a really dynamic agenda and obviously they [Suncorp] are very strong for innovation … and looking for new products and services to build an offering that’s unique is something that attracts me to Suncorp. I am excited about where Michael Cameron is taking the company and I want to be part of that.”

Cameron said in a statement that Harland’s leadership and track record over the past 16 years in similar roles will build on the momentum the group already has, and take its digital capability to the next level.

Before Medibank, Harland was general manager, group technology for ANZ Bank and has also held CIO roles at the National Health Service in the UK, and QWEST Communications in Denver in the United States.

Suncorp’s chief transformation officer, Clayton Herbert is currently acting caretaker in the CIO role until Harland starts in September.