Meet Stephen Fernando
Stephen’s Role as a Business Leader at Murray River Council
Stephen P Fernando recently took on the role of the Director of Corporate Services at Murray River Council, a government administration or municipality covering 11,865 square kilometres located in the Southern Riverina bordering Victoria, Australia. It is a picturerous area that sees over 2 million room nights per year (pre-COVID) by tourists coming to enjoy the river, the great outdoors and the wineries.
Stephen’s Past Experiences in Data Science
Previously he was the CFO, at the Whitsunday Regional Council, in Queensland, at the start of the world-famous Great Barrier Reef. Before that he headed the business services function for Mackay Water & Waste, where he was instrumental in driving Australia’s first fleet-wide installation of smart water meters, one of the earliest smart cities projects in the country.
Stephen is also a freelance public speaker for 6 years, with international experience in the public sector, public sector business transformation & innovation, smart cities, data analytics, and asset management. He was also the Chief Financial Officer for the Whitsunday Regional Council and the Manager of Business Services for the Mackay Regional Council.
Stephen has over 20 years of experience in senior managerial roles across 3 continents in business strategy, general and financial management, systems and processes, and marketing.
Risk management, agile, and data analytics
In this exclusive analytics podcast episode, Stephen shares:
- How Stephen started his career in local government agencies
- How he and his team got people to use less water while keeping council water rates affordable
- How data analytics are used to develop smart cities that are more liveable
- How to start and prepare for a data analytics journey through strategy, insights, and experimentation
- How a data analytics journey links back to strategic and capital decision making
- How entrepreneurship and professionalism come into play in data analytics
- His approach to when and how to adopt new technology and vendors
- The negative effects that intolerance of failure have on public institutions and risk management
- How public sector organisations can establish a better framework for experimentation
- Why the agile approach doesn’t always work
- What changes need to be made for government agencies to become more agile
- How to overcome the fear of investing in new technology
- His most important first principle
If you a senior executive in private sectors and want to understand how the corporate services within the government agencies work with data and analytics, this is the episode you do not want to miss out on.
Find out more about Stephen
What is one book that he would gift to his younger self:
- Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
- The Fearless Organisation by Prof Amy Edmondson
Learn more with related episodes in our analytics podcast:
- E77 – Geeta Pyne – Insider Secrets to Fast-Paced Agile Data Platform Development
- E67 – Anu Kukar – 3 U’s of Data Security Risk Management
- E64 – Tim Spicer – Disrupting the Automotive Insurance Market with Risk-Rated Pricing
- E46 – Brant Cooper – Applying Lean Methodology in Data Analytics
Now a word from our sponsor…
This episode is sponsored by a new program at Data Driven Analytics. It’s an analytics leader mentorship program for senior managers and executives in the business team who want to develop a data-driven business to drive customer experience excellence. For a small one-off annual fee, you get to book an Unlimited Strategy Session for a Full Year. For more information about this program, please reach out to our host, Jason Tan.