Media Release: 27 August 2020

New Zealand IT company calls for caution as companies face pressure to quickly move online post-Covid

Qual IT is calling for organisations to approach the ‘digital pivot’ with care, following pressure from consumers and employees for a move ‘online’ in the wake of Covid-19.

“Because of changes to working and consumer behaviour following lockdowns in New Zealand and across the globe, organisations are having to quickly onboard and integrate systems, platforms and products that enable remote working and online business transacting,” says Shane Hewson, co-founder and director of New Zealand information technology and quality assurance company Qual IT.

“This has come at a time when avoiding big costs is at the forefront of shareholders’ minds, so CEOs and boards are faced with the dual pressure of keeping margins razor thin, while having to quickly change how their organisations operate which often requires expensive IT investments.

“If this is not properly managed - it will be a recipe for disaster and turn into a massive money pit,” says Shane.

Having been in IT testing and quality assurance for almost 16 years, the Qual IT team has seen what has worked and what has not - when it comes to procuring and implementing new systems, products and platforms. With this knowledge, Qual IT is emphasising the importance of planning and testing to achieve success on an IT project, before spending in a sudden response to current trends.

“Our advice to companies and government departments is not to knee jerk to the mounting pressure, but rather bring IT investment decision making to board level; integrate it into the very essence of your strategy; and ensure it is at the inception of your budgeting process,” says Jon McPhee, co-founder and director with Shane, of Qual IT.

“We live in a world where IT is no longer a separate function, but has become fundamental to a business - and now, post-Covid even more than before - it actually determines, and drives how that business operates,” says Jon.

“That is why in this environment of pressure and uncertainty it is critical that the board, and leadership, know exactly what they want, before IT investment decisions are made.

“From where we are sitting, quality starts with a good, sound business case. Having started in systems and product testing over 16 years ago, we have seen how messy things can get if you do not prepare, analyse, plan, properly manage, support and govern your IT investments prudently from start to finish. In the current climate organisations can’t afford to run over budget, over timelines and still end up with imperfection,” says Shane.

“From our perspective, you want to do it once, and do it right. And if you know from the get-go where the risks are, then you are less likely to get it wrong.”

Qual IT, which started in Wellington in 2004 with two brothers-in-law, Shane and Jon, has grown to over 250 employees in Wellington, Christchurch and Auckland with over 80 clients in multiple sectors.

Qual IT has worked with some of New Zealand’s largest enterprises including NZ Police, Transpower, NZ Transport Agency and Tower. Client’s have spanned local and central government, SOEs, logistics, freight forwarding and shipping, aviation, IT, health, agriculture, insurance, banking, retail, transport, utilities, education, property, and telecommunications.