Chief Operating Officer - Technology


Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa Remote

Full time


Jun 5

Bring your possibility to life! Define your career with us

Kindly note: This role is based in either Johannesburg or Cape Town (Hybrid role)

With over 100 years of rich history and strongly positioned as a local bank with regional and international expertise, a career with our family offers the opportunity to be part of this exciting growth journey, to reset our future and shape our destiny as a proudly African group.

Job Summary

Provide strategic leadership and oversight in managing the key capabilities of portfolio, programme and project management, strategic change, global hubs, reporting and stakeholder engagement, and GSO and proactively identify opportunities to expand the existing global hubs structure.

Job Description

Strategy Formulation and Execution

  • Identify strategic role players and stakeholders and engage all stakeholders, role players and industry forums to understand changes to strategy, regulations, and markets.
  • Provide strategic guidance and advice to the Group Executive of ITO and other senior leaders on technology-related matters, contributing to the development and execution of the bank's overall technology strategy.
  • Set and communicate a long-term strategy that clearly articulates strategic targets and metrics to align the delivery of the business strategy against the strategic objectives, targets and shareholder expectations.
  • Set and oversee the execution of the business strategy, with enablement capability across the Business Unit.
  • Translate the broad business lines strategy to drive the alignment of and integration of strategy across the value chain.

Customer Primacy

  • Build and sustain a culture that aligns to the customer experience to deliver the target customer experience and financial performance
  • Contribute as a key ExCo member to the overall agenda internally and with external stakeholders, ensuring that the business line's agenda is appropriately managed and reported to all requisite stakeholders, in particular the Group ExCo.
  • Display, portray, and translate a deep understanding of market shifts and competitive positioning from a capability insights perspective and devise plans that will support prioritisation efforts.
  • Drive operational excellence initiatives to improve efficiency, scalability, and resilience of technology systems and processes, enabling the bank to deliver superior services to customers.
  • Provide business insights based on market trends, competitor offerings and global best practices as it relates to the business line

Sustainable Growth

  • Influence, integrate and guide but also meet the business growth ambitions.
  • Partner with executive bodies (ExCo’s, business lines and functions internally to align on strategic objectives.  Translate objectives into delivery pipeline requirements to ensure insights are appropriate and that adequate business ownership and buy-in are created to realise overall strategy.
  • Through delivery and execution, perform an active role with the mandate to increase the business line's overall contribution to Group performance.

Client-Driven Innovation and Change

  • Drive strategic change management initiatives, facilitating smooth transitions and adoption of new technologies, processes, and systems across the organisation.
  • Provide input into the overall client experience.
  • Stay abreast of industry trends and role players and ensure that business line is well positioned to provide competitive and industry-leading products and services.
  • Strategically influence the development of products and services that meet or exceed customer needs and expectations, creating stakeholder value.

Leading Talent

  • Accountable for enabling people and culture aligned to brand value.
  • Act as a second-level escalation point for all grievances raised in the functional area.
  • Determine and analyse attestation, training, and development needs for direct reports, and ensure that these requirements are met.
  • Ensure appropriate reward and recognition practices for all employees within the team.
  • Ensure that poor performance is addressed, and relevant corrective actions are implemented.

Operational Effectiveness

  • Build a culture of innovation, agility, collaboration, and continuous improvement within the technology function, promoting knowledge sharing, talent development, and the adoption of emerging technologies.
  • Define the business line projects and track and manage the process, understand trends and dynamics.
  • Develop and implement robust reporting mechanisms to provide accurate and timely information on technology performance, project status, and operational metrics to stakeholders at various levels of the organisation.
  • Drive operational excellence through adaptive agility, optimising technology delivery, and fostering effective collaboration and engagement with stakeholders to support the bank's strategic goals and ensure efficient and seamless technology operations across Absa.
  • Drive strategic reporting requirements.
  • Drive the development and tracking of tactical plans and scorecards and take corrective actions where required.
  • Engage and collaborate with key stakeholders, including senior executives, business units, and technology teams, to align technology strategies and initiatives with business objectives and build strong relationships.
  • Establish and optimise global hubs to ensure efficient and standardised technology operations across multiple regions, promoting collaboration and leveraging shared resources effectively.
  • Lead and oversee the successful execution of strategic portfolios, programmes and projects as well as initiatives within the technology space, ensuring alignment with the bank's overall objectives and delivering them within defined timelines and budgets.
  • Orchestrate the necessary process to facilitate regular strategic alignment between Group and the ITO function.
  • Oversee and optimise GSO, ensuring efficient delivery of technology services and support across the bank, promoting cost-effectiveness and high-quality service levels.
  • Provide leadership in engagements with regulatory bodies and represent the area of accountability in key industry associations and forums where applicable.
  • Use insights and knowledge gained from high-level reports and analyse complex comparative information to create scenarios to direct strategic intent.
  • Have the ability to adopt an agile way of working and be able to react fast and bring meaningful solutions to developments within the business line.
  • Identify, include and perform effective CIO deliverables for Absa functions as required.

Digital Adoption

  • Deliberately seek opportunities to digitise, automate and implement solutions for customer primacy, innovation, and operational effectiveness.
  • Utilise resources and encourage the use of new technology (software products, apps, websites, etc.) to their fullest potential, and derive maximum value from a digital process or solution.

Good Governance Risk and Compliance

  • Drive the development and implementation of integrated corporate governance and compliance frameworks throughout the function.
  • Implement effective governance frameworks and processes to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements, risk management, and cybersecurity measures in technology operations.
  • Influence the implementation of effective internal controls system and corporate governance in the functional area of accountability.

Data Monetisation

  • Consider the explicit use of data and its inherent value to explore opportunities, plan and guide all decisions for execution.
  • Use data to obtain quantifiable economic benefit for the area of accountability, leveraging internal or indirect capacity to make measurable business performance improvements and inform decisions accordingly.

Minimum Requirements

  • 12 - 15 years’ experience in a specific capability of importance to the bank, including a track record of 5 years in a senior information technology position in a large enterprise.
  • Bachelor's Degree: Information Technology (Required)

Absa Bank Limited is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer. In compliance with the Employment Equity Act 55 of 1998, preference will be given to suitable candidates from designated groups whose appointments will contribute towards achievement of equitable demographic representation of our workforce profile and add to the diversity of the Bank.

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