by Divina Paredes

CIO 100: Livestock Improvement Corporation

Mar 24, 2016
Technology Industry

LIVESTOCK IMPROVEMENT CORPORATION (LIC) is a farmer-owned co-operative that provides a range of services and solutions to improve the productivity and prosperity of farmers. This includes dairy genetics, information, automation technology, herd testing and DNA parentage verification.

LIC has headquarters in Hamilton, with offices in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia and Brazil, plus distributors in China, Japan, South Africa and South America.

Owned by New Zealand’s 10,500-plus dairy farmers, the co-op has more than 800 employees around New Zealand, and this number reaches 2000 during the peak dairy mating season.

Paul Littlefair was appointed CIO in November 2015, after taking on the role in an acting capacity two months earlier.

CEO Wayne McNee said the appointment comes at a time when LIC is embarking on a significant technology transformation programme worth more than $40 million.

The programme aims to provide the infrastructure and foundations that will not only support business growth but enable the delivery of new innovations to farms.

As part of this transformation programme, the team will implement the Scaled Agile Framework (SAF). The framework includes Agile principles and methods, Lean and Systems Thinking, and Lean process and product development.

The ICT team will also complete this year the web-based version of the herd recording system MINDA, which is used by more than 90 per cent of dairy farmers.

The service enables farmers to establish, maintain and benefit from complete herd records, regardless of which (if any) LIC services they use. When used in with Herd Testing and Artificial Breeding, MINDA provides a variety of management reports which enable farmers to maximise the benefits of herd improvement.

“The web-based system will revolutionise the way farmers access and utilise their farm records, in real time via the web, allowing them to make more informed decisions on the spot which can have a direct impact on farm productivity.”

Littlefair says LIC will also have major investments on business intelligence/analytics smart initiatives/machine to machine/Internet of Things, enterprise architecture, customer experience technologies and application modernisation.