Opening session at Optus Vision 2013

Disclosure: Optus Business is my client at 1000heads.  I’m blogging at this event as a paid participant.

Ellen Fanning is here opening the event, and has noted the event is carefully curated. Optus Business MD John Paitaridis takes to the stage to introduce Greg Pearce , MLC who formally opens the event.  Pearce notes that unless we embrace all the technologies available to us, Australia cannot progress.  He outlines the activities of the NSW government in ICT procurement and online services.  He notes there are more reforms that have happened and that there are more coming in consultation with business.

John Paitaridis returns to the stage to talk about the Future of Business Report with Bill Chang.

Chang notes that we are livig in a VUCA world – volatilem Uncertain, Complex, Ambiguous.  The idea came from the military but has been transferred to the business world. Chang notes that CIOs are becoming Chief Innovation Officers, and CTOs are becoming transformation officers.  We are moving from technology centricity to technology empowering business strategies. IT systems management needs to focus more on value chains and cost management needs to focus on business transformation.

Chang notes that Singapore has 160% penetration rate for mobile device penetration.  Mobile traffic will exceed 6.3 exebytes of traffic per month by 2016.  Smart machines and the internet of everything is the one of the major issues affecting business as well as everything-as-a-service.  This involves infrastructure as well as software.  Social systems will soon know more than internal company personnel management, and big data and security issues will drive innovation.

In the future, says Chang, learning will be all about the learner. Social collaboration and problem solving as well as holistic assessment will be vital to this journey of transforming education.  Game based learning, ‘4D’ immersive learning and speech integration will change both the way we learn and the innovation opportunities arising from such learning.  Chang also notes that healthcare will change dramatically in an integrated and connected age. He goes onto detail about how the healthcare sector can shift to a scaleable sector.

Chang notes that understanding the trends and how to respond to them is key to generating a successful business.

Paitaridis returns to the stage to talk about the connected consumer and the future of business.  He notes that 54% of the Australian population aged >14 have a smartphone.  He notes that 2.7 million Aussies use their mobile phone to access social networks.  Over 12 million Australians now on Facebook – half the Australian population.

Paitaridis notes that in the last 5 minutes half a million tweets have been sent, and over >170,000 Likes for brands.  The average number of minutes in whih we check our devices is every 11 minutes during waking hours.

Paitaridis introduces the Future of Business report and goes through the issues facing busienss today.  Findings are all available for download in the report at

Michael Harte, CIO at Commonwealth Bank is now on stage.  He notes that technology implementation in the banking and finance sector has historically been managing the profit of the firm, and this is fundamentally anti-customer.  If you fast forward to the age of social media, and big data and IT security, and the conversation is about integration of mobile and social and cloud as being customer oriented.

Harte notes that customers now require relationships which are deeply intimate, long term and which happen in real time.  This is a major cultural transition in terms of customer satisfaction.  You need to understand how the customer wants to interact, to measure every interaction is necessary to improve that relationship.  It took 7 years for CBA to improve its customer satisfaction rating among financial institutions.

Harte describes the $2b process of shifting capital allocation investment into customer oriented content and services. But the value to the business of the shift from greedy accountant to customer orientation was not at first cler.  It became clear when the systems integration was complete.  Information around transactions became a strategic opportunity for facilitating more business.

Harte concludes by noting that the strategic opportunities of networking lie in ensuring that we focus on integrated communication and ensuring we are not blinded by the technology but focus instead, on the people in all communications.

We now break for morning tea.  When we return, Rachel Botsman….


Rachel Botsman takes to the stage to talk about the collaboration revolution.  She notes that historically, periods of major change have been characterised by a collision of a new form of power and a new form of communication.  It is an economic rather than a technological revolution because it is based on proving efficiencies in communication.

Botsman demonstrates the convergenece of social, local and mobile with TaskRabbit. She notes that SoLoMo is not based on social media but rather on trust on interpersonal networks, in local areas, accessed on mobile devices.  She notes that building IKEA furniture is the biggest TaskRabbit posting.  It’s encouraged IKEA to think differently about what services it offers.  But she notes that even bizarre examples of mattress softening can be facilitated by TaskRabbit in a manner never before possible.

Botsman says 1.2 billion people are mobile workers.  Yet there are so few collaborative office spaces available for these mobile workers. She notes that there are new services like Liquidspace that are checking local areas for mobile working spaces.

She notes that there are now wearable devices to gather information about what one is doing to provide a continuous feedback loop.  She uses the example of Lumio – a device that tells her when she is slouching.  After spending thousands of dollars on massage etc, she corrected her posture with the feedback from the Lumio back brace to her mobile phone within a fortnight.

She then uses the example of Asthmapolis – a device which collects information about the location that inhalers are used, helping health care can better understand how to control the disease.

Botsman notes that these real time information services are changing the way we consume content (movies, music books) and changing our attitude to devices (75% of German 18-24 year olds would rather have a mobile phone than a car). How businesses respond to these changes in mobility services is key to sustainability. Mobility services mean that simple products (eg: cars, content solutions) have to be able to solve problems of access, consumption and connection.

Botsman says that crowd power is the ability of people to get things done between crowds where previously it needed a large organisation to operationalise.  She notes that the Pebble watch is an example of technology that emerged because they were agile enough with crowd funding to generate a product and bring it to market before Samsung and Aplple.  Pebble ran a kickstarter campaign and achieved their targets thousands of tines over. The speed to market issue was overcome.

Already crowdfunding has raised 6.3billion for startups. Within 3 years crowdfunding will exceed VC investment in new industries.  One of the most disruptive forces happening is the shoft from centralised institutions of business to highly distributed networks and markets.  Traditional business isn’t going away – they just need to adapt to the market. GE for instance is ensuring that half of their innovation investment is sourced from outside the organisation.  They invest in ideas – like the selling back of unused wifi connections and broadband.

Botsman concludes there are great disruptions ahead – just need to connect ideas and needs.

Bill Gibson (Australian Tax Office) is now on stage with host Ellen Fanning…. just as I’m called out to fix tech issues 🙂 Ah well.  More after lunch!

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