(Previously Not Ranked) Standard Chartered Bank found its head of group technology and operations, known internally as GTO, outside the financial sector. CIO Jan Verplancke, before joining Standard Chartered in 2004, had spent five years as computer giant Dell’s CIO for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and five years as jeans maker Levi Strauss & Co.’s chief architect in San Francisco before that.
Now based in Singapore, the 46-year-old Verplancke is responsible for a technology organization of 20,200 — 29 percent of the bank’s total head count — focused on unifying and standardizing networks spanning 70 countries. He won’t reveal the IT budget, but notes that London-headquartered Standard Chartered is investing heavily in growth initiatives across Africa, Asia and the Middle East.
Consumer and wholesale distribution channels alike “have been rapidly evolving,” says Verplancke. “Our strategy integrates physical and electronic channels and underpins client-driven principles: create a consistent but rich experience globally, provide a comprehensive suite of transactional capabilities and offer reliable and secure service.”
GTO also looks in-house, offering employees flexibility to work from home and, Verplancke says, “investing in unified communications — for instance, integrating 3G mobile telephony in our networks — to provide better and more cost-effective voice, audio and video communication, thereby improving workplace collaboration.”
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