How Telstra is growing the future of IoT
I am honoured to lead some exciting new product innovation areas for Telstra, across Home and Enterprise IoT solutions. These new innovation areas include Smart Homes and Cities, Asset Tracking, Intelligent Vehicles, Smart Metering, and Precision Agriculture.
The Internet of Things is a tremendous opportunity, as Telstra transitions into a world class technology company that empowers people to connect.
There are multiple significant new IoT growth areas in the future Australian economy. For example, more than 40 per cent of households now have at least one IoT home device such as a camera, sensors, smart plugs, smart locks or voice control. Telsyte estimates show the average Australian household will grow from 13.7 Internet connected devices in 2017 to 30.7 by 2021 (14.0 of these being IoT home devices).
Our ambition is to help Australian families and businesses to be better connected, protected and empowered. Together, we are creating home and enterprise IoT experiences where Australians can enjoy peace of mind, togetherness, comfort, convenience, conservation and wellness.
Behind each of these Telstra innovation areas is an amazing team of software and system engineer ‘DevOps’.
Our team works on software and systems development, as well as rapid customer experience improvement and improved operations/uptime for Telstra IoT end-to-end services.
This means we get to work on some pretty cool and innovative products such as Intelligent Vehicles, Smart Metering, Precision Agriculture, Asset Tracking and Smart Cities. We also get to create a fantastic new Smart Home customer experience for families across Australia.
This is a time of tremendous change for Telstra, and we’re embracing new ways of working across the board.
We have a continuous integration, continuous delivery (CICD) workflow. That means we use agile best practices including having daily stand-ups, prioritised backlog, and user stories to put our IoT customers at the centre of everything we do.
This dynamic, creative and innovative work environment allows everyone to feel empowered to solve new challenges, and I feel, gives everyone a great sense of accomplishment.
As we work for a global player in this space, we partner with, and learn from, some of the world’s leading technology companies such as Amazon, Google, Facebook, Comcast, Pivotal Labs, Microsoft, and all our hundreds of device partners. It’s definitely a challenging and exciting time to be working at Telstra.
I started my career at Telstra in 2013. Since then I feel like my skills and knowledge in this space have expanded significantly, because I’m always learning new things.
My first job was the Director of Connected Home in Telstra Retail, where I got to work on consumer product innovation across Home Wi-Fi and Telstra AIR, Safe Broadband, Consumer Email and Smart Home.
I then became the General Manager of Home Innovation where my focus was on improving the broadband network experience for our customers, and extending the Telstra network into the home with wall to wall Wi-Fi coverage.
Now I’m in my current role, so it’s been a pretty exciting journey so far and I can’t wait to see what is next.
So what has kept me here so long?
Besides the work I get to do to help deliver exiting new IoT products to millions of Australians, it would have to be the flexibility that Telstra provides.
We don’t just say we work flexibly, we do it every day. For example when we need to pick up the kids from school or work from home when a family member is unwell, we do it. It’s that type of work environment.
If you’re interested in a role at Telstra here are some tips for greatest career satisfaction:
- Follow your Passion: Work where your passion lies. Speak up, be bold and don’t settle. Take initiative on a project you are passionate about, and help your team achieve great results. Down the road, the projects you will remember most are those with passion, conviction, and great teamwork on ground-breaking innovation efforts.
- Seek and act on feedback: One attribute that stands out among the most successful people I have had the pleasure to work with, is their willingness to improve themselves. Great employees reflect, seek feedback and act on it. Most importantly they take accountability, take ownership, admit mistakes, avoid excuses or blame, and don’t walk past problems. Down the road, acting on feedback will help you to get the most out of your career.
- Give back more than you receive: In your education and career, many people have helped you along the way. Take the time to help others through mentoring, volunteering, listening and providing advice. Down the road, you’ll be all the better for the time you help others, the way others have helped you.
- Enjoy the ride: the last tip is simple… have fun! Find a diverse and creative team, with a boss you respect and can learn from. We spend more time at work than anywhere else. Pick a team you enjoy, and work hard – but not too hard for too long. Down the road, you’ll remember your hobbies, vacations, and crazy spontaneous adventures a lot more than your late nights in the office. Pick a team that understands work-life effectiveness where you will learn, grow, work smart, improve, deliver innovation you are proud of, and enjoy the ride.