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Govt's business focus lures top testing firm

08 Nov 2011

A positive approach to business is one of the key reasons international testing firm Capgemini is returning to New Zealand after a nine-year absence, according to ANZ CEO Paul Thorley.

The company has been running a small-scale consultancy operation here for about two years, and Thorley says in that time he has been encouraged by New Zealand’s resurgence.

"Particularly in the last six months, as an organisation we felt things were happening in the New Zealand market,” Thorley says.

"We came away from meetings here with the strong sense that New Zealand’s government and business community were looking for fresh faces in terms of new offerings into the market.”

Asked whether there were any specific programs which caught their eye, Thorley says it was simply seeing the government recognising the important role of IT, particularly in business events run concurrently with the Rugby World Cup.

"The government seemed to be sponsoring and encouraging innovation in new areas, health, IT, digital content,” Thorley says.

"At the same time the government itself seemed to be embracing more reform in terms of transforming their platforms for service delivery, looking at projects where they could improve cost effectiveness.”

Darren Webber, who will direct the testing operation here, says there was also a gap in the market.

"We found there was no really serious commitment from other organisations to provide world-class testing services in New Zealand,” Webber says.

"One of the key things we’ve seen that’s missing is a strategic view. At the moment, a lot of projects take a fairly myopic view of what’s required, but we’re looking to bring more flexibility, more options, and some different resourcing models.”

The company is currently going through its set-up process, with a view to hiring between 20 and 40 people and establishing offices in Auckland and Wellington.

Webber says around 70% of those employees will be locals. 

"In year two we’re looking to push to around 100, and that’ll be more of a 50-50 mix, depending on what the market’s after.”

Image: A panel at the New Zealand Technology Trade & Investment Forum, part of the Rutherford Innovation Showcase, a series of business events which ran concurrently with the Rugby World Cup. 

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