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The Smart Techie was renamed Siliconindia India Edition starting Feb 2012 to continue the nearly two decade track record of excellence of our US edition.

January - 2012 - issue > CIO Insights

IT Department still Undermined and Underfunded in many Organizations

Jaya Smitha Menon
Monday, January 2, 2012
Jaya Smitha Menon
Avinash Jhangiani is the CIO, Global Head IT & Digital at Reliance MediaWorks, a part of the Reliance Group. He is based out of New York. . He has over 13 years of broad IT experience working with top consultancies and leading 20+ projects across Fortune 50 retail, media, financial services, and public sectors. At Reliance Media Works Jhangiani provides technology vision and leadership to assure the timely, innovative and cost-effective use of web, social, mobile and cinema technologies in order to improve business efficiencies, cut costs, and drive profitable growth. With a collaborative leadership style Jhangiani has a consistent and strong track record in building high performance technology teams and developing executable strategies. He has done his MBA in Information Systems from University of Pittsburgh. Jhangiani shares his wisdom on his personal IT innovation blog at http://youarenew.blogspot.com

Top IT initiatives brought in at Reliance - BIG Cinemas is the largest Indian cinema chain and a well-established brand. It continues to explore ways to develop deeper relationships with its customers and increase brand loyalty. In order to meet these business objectives, technology had to become a bigger part of the customer experience. We created a "Digital strategy and innovation" team whose sole purpose was to shape the digital brand of the company and leverage new technologies and trends (such as social media and mobility) for business benefit.

This required us to sit with Marketing and Operations teams to understand the entire customer lifecycle and look for opportunities to engage customers with digital experiences at the cinema as well as on their mobile devices.

Due to high costs of printing and distribution, the company was about to retire its entertainment magazine - 'The Plot'. The team digitized its content by converting it into a blog format and relaunched it as 'The Plot 2.0'. Integrating it with the main website increased traffic and stickiness. In the business context, going digitalwas not only about pushing new web and mobile platforms, it was also about finding the right application of mainstream technologies to support business goals. For instance, for the Woman’s Day (‘proud 2b a woman’) campaign, we displayed responses received via SMS in real-time on LCD displays in our cinemas.

Other digital efforts included Bluetooth activations, QR codes on tilt talkers at cinemas, and implementing RSS showtimes feeds.

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Reader's comments(1)
1:It is a very comprehensive interview of Avinash Jhangaini on new trends in IT field. High time for top management to allocate adequate budget to underfunded IT departments for business growth and not only maintaining the system to run the day to day business operations.

R H Dhanani
Posted by: Ramesh Hakumatrai Dhanani - 03rd Jan 2012
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