Transformative investments are meat and drink for Jeremy Vincent at Jaguar Land Rover. From a common time-saving PLM backbone for all design and engineering activities to an SAP-based solution that will underpin all future manufacturing operations worldwide, his projects are enabling global expansion and locking in efficiency.

What the judges said

"Jeremy Vincent really seems to be a living embodiment of the Jaguar brand." Matt Ballantine

"I admire his sentiment, 'I don't buy people I buy services'," Richard Sykes

Jaguar Land Rover is still a big shop with a lot of legacy and it needs to be getting involved in more of the innovations disrupting the car industry," Mike Altendorf

Job title
CIO Jaguar Land Rover.

When did you start your current role?
July 2008.

What is your reporting line?

Do you meet with and discuss business strategy with the CEO every week?

Are you a member of the board of directors?

What other executive boards do you sit on?
JLR India board.

Does your organisation have a CDO?

What non-technology responsibilities do you have in the organisation?
Business transformation.

How many employees does your organisation have?
32,000 globally.

Does your organisation carry out significant trade in the EU?

How many users does your department supply services to?
Around 70,000 globally in our wider ecosystem of auto-retailers and engineering companies.

How do you ensure that you have a good understanding of your business and how your customers use your business's products?
Attending seminars, meeting retailers across the world, visiting retailers of both JLR and competitors, research subscription, membership of forums in other industries such as online retail, etc.

Jaguar Land Rover technology strategy and agenda

Is your organisation being disrupted by the internet, mobility or technology-oriented start-ups?

Are you empowered by your organisation to disrupt from the inside?

Describe a disruptive measure you’ve led or played a major part in
Project Durban. A 2013 skunkworks innovation project aimed to develop a prototype cloud app for retailers/customers, leveraging an open API/SOA architecture. 2014 saw the prototype come to life, demonstrated to senior execs around the world and to retailers. The plan now is to build out the prototype through successive iterations of functionality with auto retailers so as to launch first production release (any device) in September 2015. It's disruptive and innovative in that if the traditional approach had been followed it would never have got off the ground; nor would it have been understood/justified in the usual investment/business case terms. Only with the prototype available to retailers to touch and feel has it made it to the top of business agenda. External start-up company specialist in this area has helped with the initial concept and prototype technology.

What major transformation project has been recently completed or is under way at your organisation?

iPLM seeks to leverage a global technology (DS) to improve efficiency, speed and data quality by aligning all design and engineering activities around a common PLM backbone, thus allowing engineers to spend more time engineering our vehicles and less time in admin and data manipulation across multiple platforms.

Turbo is an SAP-enabled integrated business solution for auto OEM (JLR). It is currently live in our new China manufacturing facility and our new engine plant in the Midlands, and will be the basis for all future manufacturing operations worldwide.

eSmart is similar to Turbo and is driving a common business template to all international sales operations around the world. Already 84% of our business by volume is operating on this new platform (which is integrated with Turbo) and supports 13 of our 17 subsidiary sales operations around the world.

Together these transformative investments are enabling JLR to sustain high profitability while supporting vehicle volume sales growth, global expansion and more great products faster.

What impact will the above transformation have on your organisation?
It will sustain our profitable growth by making us more efficient, faster and more real-time, improving internal data quality so that more investment is focused where it matters – not on operating out-business but in vehicle and power-train research, customer and market analysis of buying habits and mobility trends.

How has your leadership style contributed to the outcomes of the transformation project?
Pragmatism, focus on quality of thought, concept, planning, delivery execution and leading from the front, showing the way while tackling some old and outmoded concepts and ideas among some tough stakeholders in diverse regions and markets.

What key technologies do you consider enable transformation?
ERP, SOA, virtualisation, cloud (if managed well). Tools/technologies that allow a complex business to be process-mapped at the detail level and which also roll up to a more summarised level for communication purposes are also very important as too few people really understand how our business works end to end.

Are you increasing the number of cloud applications or infrastructure in use at your organisation?

What is your information and data analytics vision for the organisation?
Globally scaled architecture to support MI, analytics and big data for multiple purposes for both internally derived data as well as external data sets. Allowing traditional, predictive and adaptive analytics across many diverse business functions. Leveraging internal and external data scientists where required. We're a long way from this vision but we have made bold steps thus far.

How is mobile and social networking impacting operations and customer experience?
We have developed many diverse mobile apps for various purposes which are accessible to our customer base, the wider potential base and our retailers. We are developing a corporate app store that can be securely accessed by internal staff, our partners in our wider ecosystem. We leverage SN for vehicle launches to great success. It is a key part of our customer first strategy.

Describe your strategic vision towards shadow IT and BYOD. How do you influence and engage executives and employees around choice?
I am not at all worried about shadow IT. We have it under control. I have deployed a group of business relationship managers globally, who are gradually minimising such ungoverned, ad hoc business investments in IT without our scrutiny and against our technology vision and technical standards. Notwithstanding, it does still happen and I do battle at regular intervals in order to guide the required objective to a more aligned technology investment.

As for BYOD, this is an active strategy that I am leading and pursuing. Technologically we are ready but organisationally we are not.

What strategic technology deals have been struck and with whom?
• IBM – global datacentre hosting and flex (virtualisation of hosting platforms)
• Amazon Web Services
• SAP (cloud, Hana, etc)
• Terradata for data analytics

Who are your main suppliers?
We have about 20 to 30 strategic vendors across services  SW etc, IBM, TCS, SAP, MS, EMC, VM Ware, Google, DS. A specialist department oversees vendors and contracts together with our corporate finance, purchasing and legal teams.

Jaguar Land Rover IT security and budget

Has your organisation detected a cyber intrusion in the last 12 months?

Has cyber-security risen up your management agenda?

Does your organisation understand the potential cyber-security threats it faces?

Has this led to an increase in your security budget?

What is the IT budget?
Around £400m a year.

What is the strategic aim of the CIO and IT operations for the next financial year?
Maintain cost, improve resilience, improve security and operational controllability, reduce number of diverse assets, continue to upgrade/replace as our transformation agenda continues.

Are you finding it difficult to recruit the talent you need to drive transformation?

Has recruitment and retention risen up your agenda as a CIO?

Are you looking for recruits in the EU to fill the skills shortage you have?

Does your IT organisation operate an apprenticeship scheme?

Jaguar Land Rover technology department

How would you describe your leadership style?
From the front, tough and assertive, focused, outcomes-focused, embracing, diligent, thorough, innovative, etc.

Explain how you’ve supported and developed your senior leadership team to support your overall objectives and vision
New team recruited from scratch over last three or four years. Academy established to teach modern 21st century IT management and deployment. Leadership team regularly deputise for me at board level. They also are encouraged to speak regularly at external events about our journey.

How many employees are in your IT team?
Around 250 employees in the zero base but perhaps 1,200 including all personnel working on various programmes over and above the zero base.

What is the split between in-house/outsourced staff?
I do not know how many 'outsourced' staff I have as I buy services not people.

Does your team include key skilled workers from the EU?