Movers and shakers: Richard Raj moves to healthAlliance as head of digital and mobility

Richard Raj is taking on the inaugural role of head of Digital and Mobility at healthAlliance.

The role will support the Northern Region district health boards to drive their digital and mobile direction quickly. He will manage the applications team and related services to support that direction and assist the DHBs in achieving results.

healthAlliance is one of the country’s largest shared services organisations, providing technology and other non-clinical services to the four northern region DHBs: Northland, Auckland, Waitemata and Counties Manukau. Its 500 employees provide support to around 26,500 DHB and primary health sector staff.

Raj brings to the position a range of ICT leadership experience across a variety of roles specialising in digital and mobility. He has developed a number of digital strategies with proven success in delivery across a range of industries.

For the past two years, Raj has been Group Digital Solutions and Innovations Manager at Frucor Beverages. Prior to that, he was Group IT Solutions Manager.

Richard Raj at a CIO roundtable discussion in Auckland.

“The industry experience I have gained over the years has provided me a solid foundation to add value to the Northern Region DHBs and to healthAlliance” Raj tells CIO New Zealand.

“It gives me the opportunity to contribute back to the community by improving and supporting better health outcomes for people in our region.”

Raj starts at healthAlliance on July 31.

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Roz Urbahn is joining Livestock Improvement Corporation as its first chief people officer.

She will be reporting to the chief executive Wayne McNee and part of the co-op’s senior leadership team. Urbahn has spent more than 10 years in senior roles for Fletcher Building, Lion and Hudson Global Services.

Urbahn will lead LIC’s People and Performance Group (human resources and organisational development), which provide solutions to enable LIC to build and sustain a high performing and engaged workforce. The role will also focus on the health of the organisation and its 600-plus staff, as part of the transformation programme currently underway to create more value for LIC and optimise how the business is run.

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Lookiimedia director Julia O’Toole has announced the release of Mycena, a new password management app for both Android and iOS devices.

Designed for non-technical users to make saving and retrieving passwords fast and painless, Mycena provides up to three levels of password security, free for the first five passwords. Additional password storage is available via small one-time payments rather than monthly or annual subscription fees.

Mycena uses fingerprint, voice and face keys, with each encrypted key opening a successive level of security, to protect passwords and other sensitive information, such as bank account details, that needs to be kept safe and secure. For devices that do not have built-in fingerprint recognition, Mycena uses a PIN as its first level of security, then progresses through voice and face keys to provide the additional levels of security.

O’Toole says the impetus to develop Mycena came from talking to friends and colleagues who were frustrated with existing password management solutions.

Photo by Divina Paredes

Some people were keeping lists of passwords in Excel spreadsheets or text documents.Julia O'Toole, Lookiimedia

“Today pretty much everybody needs to remember multiple passwords for their email, their bank account, online shopping at Amazon and suchlike. Lots of my friends were complaining about having to remember all their passwords and not being able to find a convenient, simple, non-technical app that would let them do it easily and securely. Some, in desperation, were even resorting to keeping lists of passwords in Excel spreadsheets or text documents.”

“The one thing that people pretty much always have on them these days is their smartphone, so we wanted something that would run on their personal device and not rely on a cloud-based service. There’s a conventional wisdom that suggests cloud-based password solutions are the most secure, but there’s been enough hacks and ransomware events to show that cloud solutions are not infallible,” says O’Toole.

Mycena can be used on multiple devices including a mix of Android and iOS, and passwords can be synchronised via Mycena’s cloud service. However, O’Toole says the company recommends that users delete the cloud copy of their passwords once synchronisation is complete.

“Even though the Cloud is 99.99 per centsafe and passwords are encrypted, making it more difficult for a hacker to crack, we think keeping all the passwords in the same vault on the Cloud automatically makes it an attractive target for hackers – just like robbers used to like to rob banks because that’s where most of the cash was kept.”

The Alloy team (left to right): Mark Glenn, Head of Experience; Rod Schofield, CEO; Andrew Joll, Head of Technology; Clare Warne, Head of Business.

Alloy is a new consultancy founded by the team of Rod Schofield (former managing partner at Clemenger BBDO | Touchcast), Mark Glenn (former head of experience at Clemenger BBDO | Touchcast), Clare Warne (former digital director at Ocean Design) and Andrew Joll (former technical director at Touchcast).

“We started Alloy because we’d seen clients struggling to keep pace with the constantly changing landscape, often using existing processes and systems that were counterproductive to what they wanted to achieve. Our approach is to seamlessly blend with our clients – understanding their context, enhancing their capabilities and introducing a fresh, customer-focused perspective,” Schofield, who is CEO at Alloy.

We started Alloy because we’d seen clients struggling to keep pace with the constantly changing landscape, often using existing processes and systems that were counterproductive to what they wanted to achieveRod Schofield

Alloy’s head of technology, Andrew Joll, has over 12 years’ experience in top technology roles, with a background in creative technology and user-experience.

Joll says technology is often seen as ‘overwhelming’ or ‘high risk’.

The Alloy team aims to simplify and mitigate perceived risk by creating working prototypes to test ideas before significant investment is made, he states.

“The tech industry is frequently reinventing the wheel, opting to create things from scratch or pushing clients to buy monolithic digital platforms when more effective solutions already exist. Huge efficiencies can be made by identifying and combining already proven technologies in new ways.”

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Bioinformatics software company Biomatters opens offices in Denmark and made key management appointments in North America, Europe and Asia to service growing demand from enterprises involved in biologic drug development.

The announcement follows the recent launch of Biomatters’ Geneious Biologics solution, a highly scalable and configurable Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) designed to give enterprises undertaking biologic drug development the tools to leverage ‘big data’ during precision antibody discovery, improving accuracy and minimising failures.

Worldwide sales of antibody biologic drugs are projected to reach more than $140 billion by 2020 and we see this momentum reflected in demand for Geneious Biologics Andrew Steel, Biomatters

In addition to the recent appointment of sales director Wayne Hsu (Asia-Pacific) and key account managers Sarah Koeppen (US) and Simon Asbj?rn-Larsen (Western Europe), Biomatters will, in the coming months, fill additional sales management and field application scientist roles in North America, Europe, and Asia.

“Worldwide sales of antibody biologic drugs are projected to reach more than $140 billion by 2020 and we see this momentum reflected in demand for Geneious Biologics and growth of our established Geneious application,” says Biomatters CEO Andrew Steel.

“Geneious Biologics was launched less than two months ago and is building a strong customer base already. Our sales pipeline is extremely robust with strong demand across all geographies,” he states.

The biologic drug market is a huge opportunity for Biomatters as biopharma companies and commercial enterprises seek solutions that provide scalable data management and computation, in order to increase process efficiencies and accelerate drug discovery, says Steel.

“We need to anticipate significant sales growth in the coming period. Our increased presence in Europe and Asia, and expansion of our North American operation, are important steps toward ensuring we meet demand."

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