by Divina Paredes

CIO 100: New Zealand Racing board

Mar 24, 2016
Technology Industry

“THIS YEAR, THE ICT team at the New Zealand Racing Board will continue to roll out the Optimus Programme, which is part of the group’s fi ve-year re-architect IT strategy, says Colin Philp, CIO.

“The re-architect IT strategy is now into its third year and this phase will deliver signifi cant uplift in security, performance and resilience, while delivering cost savings and further enabling digitisation of our business via modernised cloud based services” says Philp.

Philp explains the Optimus Programme was launched in 2015, with a scope that includes outsourcing tiers 1 2 infrastructure and desktop support to Spark Digital which will provide a managed service. “Additionally, the project sees us moving out of our Petone data centre by virtualising the majority of services to Revera Cloud Services, and moving to Google Apps for Work and Chromebooks as the desktop, communications and collaboration solution for NZRB staff.”

He says a number of enhancements have also been made to key digital platforms, delivering more performance, and product for the customers, particularly during peak events.

Philp says NZRB will continue to deliver on its service enablement strategy by developing external facing APIs to its customers, partners and developers. “This interface will offer all line of business information and betting services.”

In support of the customer strategy, they will also be beginning the process of engaging the market to understand options for a managed service solution for their retail network, leveraging their recently developed digital platform. This will entail introducing a new digital display solution, that replaces “printed form” with touch screen based race and sports information in their retail and on course networks, as well as replacing the TAB’s 17-year-old betting terminals.

He says a project that the whole organisation is excited about is the rolling out of Google Apps for Work and Chromebooks. This will replace a Windows 7 based environment with Google’s desktop system that includes collaboration and communication solutions for NZRB’s highly distributed workforce. “Future opportunities with Google solutions are being explored within this new partnership,” says Philp.

“The API gateway provides NZRB with a key foundation to evolve how customers consume our services and how the organisation engages with partners wanting to offer our services. This will enable our business to create new digital commerce models.”

NZRB is likewise expanding on its existing IaaS cloud (public, private and managed) presence by completing the Optimus Programme which sees the entire organisation’s line of business and corporate capabilities replatformed in Revera’s All of Government services offering. This initiative will see the organisation adopt SaaS solutions for its finance and HR systems, says Philp.