Marcus Lloyd, the Group IT Manager for Te Runanganui o Ngati Porou was one of three finalists nominated for the top prize at the 2014 CIO (Chief Information Officer) Awards.
The nomination was not only an achievement for Marcus and his whanau, and the TRONPnui Group, but also for the Iwi.This is the first time the mahi of an Iwi organisation had been acknowledged in this category. The Awards were part of a two day national CIO Summit,and among the companies such as Google, and Microsoft who attended the event, Marcus was the only representative of an Iwi or Māori organisation.
Marcus says he found it to be an exciting and fulfilling experience to reach the finals of the Awards and the nomination, “represented the accumulation of a lot of hardwork, vision and great support by the team at Te Runanganui o Ngati Porou.”
Marcus says the judges felt that the work to consolidate the diverse needs of Iwi organisations was a technological challenge, and that, “Ngati Porou were able to successfully navigate and bring this all together. They also felt that thework we are doing was an example to all Iwi and was worthrecognizing.”
Although the Chief Information Officer of the Year award went to Kevin Angland of IAG, Marcus says being recognized along side his peers in the ICT industry was positive and uplifting. “For myself professionally there are good opportunities out there to build a strong professional network and work with exciting people. For the Runanganui, the Awards sets our Iwi alongside some of the most advanced and forward thinking companies in New Zealand. It presents Ngati Porou as a strong force in using technology to advance our Iwi.”
The mahi Marcus and the Runanganui are doing in the IT space include collaborating with a local ISP provider to build a large regional high-speed network, and establishing Wi-Fi connections at marae throughout Ngati Porou. The online presence of Ngati Porou is also currently being re-designed,which will enable Natis anywhere in the world to connect,collaborate and access resources. A unified communications network joining together Runanganui subsidiaries and associated organisations over 20 sites has also just been completed.
One of the many IT projects Marcus is most proud of is developing a collaborative relationship with mobile communication provider, 2 degrees. An outcome of this relationship was the launch of the Ngati Porou and 2 degrees Association, where 5% of monthly mobile bills are donated back to the Ngati Porou community.
At the moment the Runanganui and 2 degrees are promoting a national marketing campaign and a special incentive is offered to Natis who join the scheme. Marcus believes that ICT provides the way forward for Iwi around the country to deliver services to their people,connect their whanau together, and to strongly position their goods and services in new markets worldwide. He says, “ICT not only will enable Iwi to play more of a significant role in building a better Aotearoa, but also is the future for providing employment for our people.”