26 - 27 March, 2019 | Novotel Sydney Central, Sydney, Australia

Conference Day Two: Wednesday, 27th March 2019

8:30 am - 9:00 am Coffee And Registration

9:00 am - 9:10 am Conference Opening – Remarks from the Conference Chairperson

9:10 am - 9:50 am How The Guardian UK Leveraged Digital to Transition From The 4th Biggest Newspaper in The UK to One of The Top 5 News Sources in the World

Zach Brand - Chief Digital Officer, Guardian News and Media (UK)
The Guardian UK saw the writing on the wall, recognising the urgency to respond to changing customer expectations. They recognised the need to become a more agile organisation with the customer at it’s heart. In the process of transitioning, however,The Guardian had it’s fair share of unsuccessful transformations as they were overcomplicated. Now they’ve simplified the customer journey into a 4 step journey which has enabled them to change the way the business operates and in the process built a closer relationship with the readers, the majority of which are now consuming digitally!
 How mapping the customer journey has led to The Guardian figuring out a business model which allows them to better keep pace with change
 Lessons learned from overcomplicated journeys e.g. how net results declined when too many options were put in front of the customer
 How do you manage many opinions around ‘lean’ and ‘agile’ to get to a frictionless, agile business
 The challenge of successfully adapting many formats for digital (e.g. appeals, advertising..)
 How The Guardian will leverage their revitalised relationship with readers to work with them for future success

Zach Brand

Chief Digital Officer
Guardian News and Media (UK)

There is now a need for business to respond, create and innovate quicker than ever before. New ways of working offer a strategy for doing this by steering the organization away from traditionally siloed structures and towards the establishment of a collaborative community capable of co-creating for the greater good of the organization. In this session panelists will discuss:

  • What does ‘new ways of working’ mean within your organization? 
  • How to bring likeminded staff together and create a space for them to collaborate
  • The benefits received by the entire organization from adopting new ways of working 
  • Potential of this approach to improve organizational efficiency and culture 


Nick Eshkenazi

Chief Digital Technology Officer


Simona Turin

Executive General Manager Customer Acquisition and Revenue Management


Bart Sobies

Chief Global Digital Revenue Officer

10:30 am - 11:00 am Morning Tea


Stream A: Business Model Evolution

11:00 am - 11:40 am Building Digital Capability To Support A Customer-First, Agile Culture
Sandra Slater - Chief Information Officer, Department of Transport and Main Roads Queensland
The shifting expectations of customers and pace and scale of technological change means government needs to think, design and deliver services differently, putting the customer at the centre of everything it does. The Department of Transport and Main Roads’ (TMR) digital vision is firmly focused on improving the lives of Queenslanders. A drive to build the digital capability of its people is helping TMR deliver on that vision—putting ideas into action, placing people at the heart of its digital services and ultimately making it easier for Queenslanders to do business with the department.

In this session:

  • The TMR Digital Capability program and its four streams
  • How new ways of working are enhancing the agility of the organisation through testing small and building capability gradually
  • Developing a maturity framework which has been piloted across the organisation and since praised by Gartner
  • How TMR is using Design Thinking to understand real customer needs and enhance customer experience
  • Reports from 18 months into the program

Sandra Slater

Chief Information Officer
Department of Transport and Main Roads Queensland

Stream A: Business Model Evolution

11:40 am - 12:20 pm Developing a Governing Framework which Facilitates Business Innovation and Delivers Real Value to the Customer
Peter Jones - Head of Strategy and Operational Excellence, ME Bank
ME Bank are looking to avoid disruption and differentiate themselves through becoming a forward- thinking organisation. An annual prioritisation framework was established in 2017 which provided flexibility and fluidity to the business whilst dissecting previous projects and determining their success in delivering real business value. Given it’s success in providing a means of articulating business priorities effectively throughout all business areas it’s since been evolved to a quarterly model. In this session Peter will explain how this tool is contributing to creating a more innovative organisation:

  • The importance of leveraging all the pieces of information in creating the right model for the organisation 
  • How this focus on business value delivery accompanies new ways of working and the effect it’s having on culture
  • The business benefit realisation which has so far been delivered through the framework: how and what ME have been able to learn from retrospection

Peter Jones

Head of Strategy and Operational Excellence
ME Bank

Stream B: Partnerships and Collaboration

11:00 am - 11:40 am Creating a Future Ready Research Institution through Enhanced Collaboration at the University of Melbourne
Assyl Haidar - Director of Digital and Data, University of Melbourne
The University of Melbourne are coupling a new framework with digital and data to weave research into the fabric of the university and enable academics to play a role in solving institutional challenges. In this session Assyl will share how University of Melbourne are reducing the barriers to cross-university conversations:

  • Development of a rolling framework which allows the university to be more nimble 
  • Enhancing transparency to improve relationships with students/ vendors/ partners
  • Using data to better connect the university across it’s 8 different locations

Assyl Haidar

Director of Digital and Data
University of Melbourne

Stream B: Partnerships and Collaboration

11:40 am - 12:20 pm Leveraging Partnerships to Think Innovatively in the Rolling Stock Industry
Mike Ayling - General Manager Digital Technology & Innovation-Transport and Infrastructure, Downer
In three short years Downers’ Innovation Department has grown from a one man band to a team of 18. Currently they’re looking into the applications of Machine Learning, Image Recognition technology, AI and Natural Language Processing to enhance efficiency and safety within their rolling stock. In this session Mike will discuss:

  • The process of convincing the organization to get on board with innovation in the beginning
  • How partnering with Universities and Research institutes has enhanced innovation 
  • Understanding the difference in structure between revenue driven and research driven organisations to be able to collaborate efficiently across these different structures
  • Why our ‘me now’ culture needs to be replaced with a long term commitment in order to sustain innovation and competitive edge 
  • How Machine Learning, Image Recognition technology, AI and Natural Language Processing may become part of the future of rolling stock

Mike Ayling

General Manager Digital Technology & Innovation-Transport and Infrastructure

12:20 pm - 1:20 pm Lunch Break

1:20 pm - 2:00 pm Navigating Bureaucracy and Changes in Staffing to Maintain Momentum for Digital Enablement

Bryan Foley - Project Manager- Change and Improvement, Tafe SA
The emergence of digital education has thrown a curve ball to the education sector with each new opportunity being accompanied by multiplenew challenges. TAFE SA provides vocational education and training to the whole state across many ‘hands on’ disciplines where the application of technology such as video capture, AR & VR, and virtual classrooms enable far greater flexibility in learning design and the potential to transform the student experience. Between February and June 2017 TAFE SA developed a digital education strategy to respond to the challenge of delivering quality digital education but implementation of the strategy stalled due to a range of challenges including staffing changes and organisational priorities. In this flipped session, Bryan will discuss the current and emerging application of technology at TAFE SA and challenge the audience to consider;

  • How to maintain enthusiasm for a digital strategy over time and through staff changes
  • How to change the hearts and minds of the business at all levels
  • Selling digital transformation with senior staff, executives and boards

Bryan Foley

Project Manager- Change and Improvement
Tafe SA

2:00 pm - 2:40 pm Case Study: How a Customer Obsessed Digital Transformation Facilitated Business Growth at SunSuper

Darren Kavanagh - Team Leader, Employer & New Business, SunSuper
Driven by a desire to become one of the top Superannuation providers in Australia and to keep up with changes in the Financial industry Sunsuper began its digital transformation journey about 4 years ago  with the launch of a program of work which would invest $100m into its technology platforms. The program was aimed at delivering the business and technology change that will help transform the way Sunsuper operates, making it 2020 ready. The Program is much more than a technology or process change, it is a change to the way we work as an organisation which is driven by 2 key principles:

  • Deliver market leading customer experience, and
  • Provide service that is efficient and can meet the needs of our customers at a low cost

In this session Darren will share:

  • Preparing and embedding this vision across the organisation involved a parallel organisational restructure; chiefly pulling together Technology and Customer Experience teams to ensure the vision of customer obsession becomes part of everything SunSuper does
  • Results: Awards for SuperFund of the year and growth trajectory (FUM and Members)
  • Next steps: Customer & Technology teams are beginning to focus on how they operate and moving from a technology driven area to a customer value driven area.

Darren Kavanagh

Team Leader, Employer & New Business

2:00 pm - 2:40 pm Xero Case Study: Leveraging Partnerships to Innovate Products and Accelerate Business

Simona Turin - Executive General Manager Customer Acquisition and Revenue Management, Xero
Xero has embarked on a massive journey of self-disruption. In order to provide a better value proposition to businesses and customers Xero is moving from being solely an accounting solution to an entire business platform: #Beautifulbusiness. The ability to make this transition has been attributed to creating an extensive ecosystem of partners who’ve widened the capabilities of the business. In this session Simona will discuss:

  • How taking advantage of partnerships has enabled Xero to better innovate in-house
  • How Xero overcame initial resistance and guided engineers through the process of ‘letting go of doing it all’ in-house
  • The Business model evolution which has gone hand in hand with this transition

Simona Turin

Executive General Manager Customer Acquisition and Revenue Management

1:20 pm - 2:00 pm Utilising an Accelerator to Enhance Innovation and Improve CX at TAL

Dan Canham - Head of Accelerator, TAL
TAL is innovating the organization and it’s products through their accelerator which utilizes design thinking to solve complex business problems. Key to being able to deliver solutions in just 16 weeks is the structure and governance of the accelerator, which Dan will explain in more detail along with:

  • How the accelerator explores innovation and technology and some recent successful and unsuccessful explorations 
  • Examples of business problems and their solutions borne by the accelerator, and the ultimate outcome
  • How the accelerator concept can be applied to solving customer problems

Dan Canham

Head of Accelerator

2:40 pm - 3:10 pm Afternoon Tea

3:10 pm - 3:50 pm Utilising An Accelerator Forum To Test Hypotheses Quicker And Innovate Rapidly

Stephen Bowen - Head of Digital Platforms and Accelerators, Telstra
Telstra is conducting a digital uplift within it’s B 2 B operations. A key component of this is the use of accelerator forums to quarterly test and inject fresh, innovative ideas into the organization. In this session Stephen will share an overview of the broader strategy along with the intricacies of the acceleratorand some of the results to date:

  • How this component factors in to an overall  goal to have software engineering at the core of the business
  • How this concept was successfully  scaled very quickly to in order to attain business confidence 
  • How this approach combines agile methodology and data driven decisions for better outcomes and better product  
  • How they are working to meet the underlying challenge of getting faste

Stephen Bowen

Head of Digital Platforms and Accelerators

3:50 pm - 4:30 pm How Deakin is Using Intelligent Solutions to Respond to Stakeholder Needs and Drive the Digital Frontier

William Confalonieri - CDO and Vice- President, Deakin University
Deakin University, established in 1974, is ranked in the top 2% of Universities in the world and prides itself on providing flexible and accessible higher education with a student-focused culture; the fastest growing campus is based in the Cloud, where over 13,000 students study predominantly online. Deakin is aiming to be Australia’s premiere University in driving the digital frontier – ensuring both students and staff develops the flexibility, skills and experience they need to meet the challenges of disruptive change, and research that makes a difference to the communities it serves. The University is delivering intelligent, future focused solutions that anticipate and respond to its stakeholders’ ever changing needs; such as Deakin Genie-a digital personal assistant powered by artificial intelligence and machine learning who simplifies the study experience and prepares students for an AI-powered future. In this session hear how William is driving the digital frontier at Deakin University, harnessing digital interruption through innovation and reinvention to future-proof the organisation and ensure its ongoing success:

  • The Deakin journey and lessons learnt implementing digital change
  • ‘Megatrends’ set to affect all industries
  • Organisational responses to future-proofing business
  • Emerging technologies that will change the game in customer engagement

William Confalonieri

CDO and Vice- President
Deakin University

4:30 pm - 5:10 pm Leveraging Technology to Create a Seamless Customer Experience at Toll Group

Craig de Rooden - EVP / Global Head of Business Improvement & Transformation, Toll Group
Toll’s recent transformative journey has centred around bringing many disparate divisions together and creating both a Toll language and a singular Toll customer environment. In this session Craig will share the first half of this journey:

  • How AI, Chatbots and ways of working are being investigated as strategies for improving the customer experience
  • Lessons from Toll in designing for purpose in the digital space 
  • Overcoming many legacy systems and why change management for both customers and staff was the first major project out of the door

Craig de Rooden

EVP / Global Head of Business Improvement & Transformation
Toll Group

5:10 pm - 5:20 pm Conference Closing – Remarks from the Conference Chairperson

5:20 pm - 5:20 pm End of Conference