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Liberty’s CIO receives top industry recognition

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Liberty’s Chief Information Officer, Benjamin Marais, has received recognition as the Finnovex CIO of the year at the South African edition of the global Finnovex Awards, which took place on the 26th of July 2022 in Johannesburg. Visionary leaders in the financial services industry were recognized, . and the high honor was conferred on him in recognition of his efforts to transform the business into a platform based digital organisation

As Liberty’s IT chief, Marais has been instrumental in turning the company into a modern, digital, human-augmented business.

He oversaw the rollout of Microsoft 365 to all employees during COVID-10, enabling business continuity as the world adopted new ways of working. He also directed the modification of 200 legacy applications to a handful of digital platforms aimed at simplifying the client experience, moving Liberty from a linear value business to a platform-based digital business.

Marais simplified the IT operating model, driving efficiencies by centralising teams from five different business units into a single capability. Through this, Liberty has moved away from a hierarchical IT operational model to a service-aligned organisation. Overall, through his efforts, a total of 59 core processes have been automated, saving hundreds of hours.

“One of my core objectives was to improve our cyber security posture, as well as establishing robust data and analytics strategy in line with business objectives,” Marais says.

“I’m extraordinarily pleased to have received this award. Much of the credit goes to the Liberty IT leadership team, which is now 71% female and predominantly African, once again showcasing Liberty’s congoing commitment to driving women’s empowerment and inclusivity. This is a sign of how we at Liberty reflect the contribution of the broader South African society,” concluded Marais