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Collaborating for a better future

Hitachi, Marketing - Andrew Mudford Blog

Andrew Mudford, Hitachi’s General Manager of Services and Systems, brings his years of understanding the benefits of collaboration to his new role.

Andrew is passionate about the environmental, and economic, benefits of working together, across business units and disciplines.

Tell us about your background and how you came to work at Hitachi

I have a background in consulting and program management in banking and finance. My career highlights before Hitachi include leading the redevelopment of the New Zealand passport system, driving cross-industry collaboration to prevent automatic teller machine and cash-in-transit robberies and was part of the team that introduced NFC (near-field communications) mobile payments into Australia.

I joined Hitachi Vantara (Hitachi’s data insights division) at as sales executive in 2017 then recently transferred to Hitachi Australia as General Manager of Systems and Services.

One of my reasons for joining, and then staying with, Hitachi, is that notion of a double or triple bottom line, where you're not just building solutions and making a profit, you’re also having a positive impact on society. And I think Hitachi really tries to deliver on that, if you look at a lot of our initiatives, particularly around where we’re choosing to invest in research and development.

What’s the most exciting thing about your role?

At its core, what I do at Hitachi Australia, a regional headquarter of Hitachi in the region is looking at how we can bridge the gap between the various group companies and look for efficiencies and collaboration. We look at how the solutions that may be contained in one business unit, vertically, can work across larger and more complex opportunities, such as rail transformation or the decarbonisation of mining.

It’s difficult to quantify the benefits of collaboration across business units, yet one of the best things about working at Hitachi is it’s a large international conglomerate operating in lots of different industries with diverse capabilities. That can sometimes make collaboration uneasy because people have their own KPIs and their own agenda. It’s our job to clearly illustrate those benefits.

But I think we're really only scratching the surface around collaboration-based opportunities. We started on a case-by-case basis and now we’re looking at how to put a bit more structure around that.

What does sustainability mean to you?

Sustainability means a lot of things. I think an economic benefit and environmental benefit should go hand in hand. And I think we're lucky in this country that we've got a big mining-related industry which is pushing forward in that area. I think a lot of our modern agricultural practices are also sustainable.

It's about incubating these one-off projects to become business that can grow and deliver both economic and environmental benefits.

What projects are you excited about in the future?

A big area is targeted healthcare. Hitachi's got some incredible solutions around cutting-edge cancer treatments, but they need to be a little bit more holistic to have a broad benefit across society. That means working in partnership with third parties and utilising their specific areas of expertise.

A good example of that is the development of Western Sydney Parklands. There's a big push in that area around building a city of the future, which requires a whole lot of different capabilities. If you look at the breadth of what Hitachi can do, there's a lot of potential there. It’s exciting because it’s a 30-year journey through delivering a series of major projects. Successful collaboration with third parties is the key to success there.

Another big area is mining decarbonization. We are working with our partners, such as Rio Tinto, focussing on the electrification of mobile and fixed assets, and the overall digitization of their value chain. This is going to have a big impact in the future.

We're really lucky to work with really passionate people in in the different business units across Hitachi. If it was only our team, we wouldn’t be successful. Our success, and therefore Hitachi’s success, comes from genuine collaboration.