Australian banking giant Westpac has set back by four year the timetable for migration of its core banking platform to the Hogan system used by its subsidiary St George as it strives to make sense of its sprawling IT estate.
In a presentation to analysts on Friday, Westpac technology head Bob McKinnon laid out a complex roadmap for technology change that will entail substantial integration work and the decommissioning of multiple legacy platforms and data centres at the bank.
Over the next two years, the bank will consolidate its data centres from eight to two, introduce new digital signature, IP telephony and customer information systems at the branch and call centre level, build out its enterprise middleware platform for consolidation of customer information projects and introduce a new multi-channel online banking system that is fit for purpose in a digitised, mobile world.
The migration of the core Westpac banking platform to the Hogan system deployed by St George will be set aside until 2014, while the bank focuses on 'customer centric' issues McKinnon told analysts. The shift to Hogan will mark the culmination of the transformation programme, decommissioning 19 separate systems and introducing real-time banking across the group.
Westpac chief executive Gail Kelly is backing the programme as a means to improve customer focus, boost productivity and reduce cost income ratios. She told Friday's analyst meeting that the bank is likely to reduce its workforce in the next few years as the new technology systems come onstream.