Mining Company’s CIO Digs Into Tech Innovation

By Peter High  |  Posted 10-08-2015 Print Email

Hudbay Minerals, a Canadian mining company, becomes more data driven as it strives to create sustainable value in the communities where it operates.

Hudbay Minerals is a Canadian integrated mining company with operations, development properties and exploration activities across the Americas and focuses on the discovery, production and marketing of base and precious metals. The company's objective is to create sustainable value through increased commodity exposure on a per-share basis by growing long-life deposits, in high-quality and mining-friendly jurisdictions.

Joe AbiDaoud has been CIO of Hudbay for more than five years. He speaks with CIO Insight contributor Peter High about his role in innovation, his input on mergers and acquisitions, the company's global expansion and a variety topics concerning IT.

CIO Insight: What are some of your strategic IT imperatives for the foreseeable future?

Joe AbiDaoud: We've been executing well on our strategy thus far. This has included shifting to cloud and SaaS for many enterprise applications, organizational design based on Gartner's LEAN model, Single Instance ERP platform, business intelligence-enabled system architecture. What this means from a business perspective is the ability to scale our business effectively. It helps us become a low-cost producer, and drive efficiency and value from our operations.

CIO Insight: You are one of the leaders responsible for innovation. What are some examples of IT-led innovation at HudBay Minerals?

AbiDaoud: HudBay has a great track record for success. I firmly believe success requires innovation. Innovation doesn't always mean technology but technology can drive innovation. We take a collaborative approach to innovation and work with our stakeholders on ways to transform our business. Some examples include introducing new software capabilities, collaborating on ways to get real-time data into the field through displays and mobile devices; coming up with new ways to improve metal balancing and other operational processes. We look at ways to leverage our ERP to improve our supply chain management. There is a long list and it continues to grow.

CIO Insight: You have also played a key role in mergers and acquisitions activities at the company. Can you describe that role?

AbiDaoud: As I mentioned earlier one of our key strategies was to create/develop an IT environment that was conducive to growth; one that could scale effectively in either direction and respond quickly to business changes, and support our business strategy. The cloud was and is a big part of that. We have the ability to enter new geographies with very little IT infrastructure, low cost and quickly. When it comes to M&A, we take part in a collective integration team that consists of all functions.

CIO Insight: As Hudbay has increasingly become a global business, how has IT reflected that expansion?

AbiDaoud: We have reflected it the same way the rest of the organization has: very positive. We are a much stronger company because of our expansion, because of the talent diversity within the company. From an IT perspective, we have solid teams across all our operations made up of local residents who care about the company they work for and the communities in which they live. Every one of our locations brings strengths to the IT function in their understanding of the local landscape, vendors, infrastructure.

CIO Insight: What other trends excite you as you look to the future?

AbiDaoud: Trends around IT/OT convergence will progress further and with that I believe mining companies will become more data driven. What happened to the manufacturing sector with things like Six Sigma will begin to take place more and more in mining.

CIO Insight: What are some of your strategic IT imperatives for the foreseeable future?

We've been executing well on our strategy thus far. This has included shifting to cloud and SaaS for many enterprise applications, Organizational design based on Gartner's LEAN Model, Single Instance ERP platform, Business Intelligence enabled system architecture, etc. What this means from a business perspective is the ability to scale our business effectively. Helps us become a low-cost producer, and drive efficiency and value from our operations.

Peter High is president of Metis Strategy, a business and IT advisory firm. His latest book, Implementing World Class IT Strategy, has just been released by Wiley Press/Jossey-Bass. He is also the author of World Class IT: Why Businesses Succeed When IT Triumphs. Peter moderates the Forum on World Class IT podcast series. Follow him on Twitter @WorldClassIT.

 



 

Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...