Australia’s national cricket governing body has selected Indian IT services company HCL Technologies to transform the digital experience for the country’s cricket community.
Not-for-profit organisation Cricket Australia will use HCL’s experience to create a digital platform that will integrate its current platforms.
Cricket Australia is five years into a digital transformation programme, and Michael Osborne, its general manager technology and services, said: “This has involved spending a lot of time building out our fan and media properties as part of the MyCricket platform and cricket.com.au.”
More than two million fans attended cricket matches in Australia during the 2018/19 season, and Cricket Australia has a global online audience exceeding 20 million a year. It achieved a record unique Australian audience of 2.87 million in January 2019 alone.
Osborne said the organisation has several successful digital properties, but they are standalone. “While they are great at what they do and at reaching the audience, our ambition is to build a digital platform that joins it all together,” he said.
By bringing its platforms together, Cricket Australia will be able to make use of more data to offer what users want, he added.
“Our fans and participants engage with us in many different ways, whether it’s coaching kids, watching a match or reading news,” said Osborne. “Our ambition is to understand that behaviour and how we touch people, so we can build digital experiences that are tailored to them.”
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Cricket Australia offers a range of digital services, including membership platforms, news services and live scores.
Osborne said it chose HCL as a partner because of the supplier’s technology expertise, such as its engineering culture and DevOps capabilities, as well as the fact that it “gets it” in the sports industry. HCL’s track record includes creating digital engagement platforms for Manchester United FC and the Volvo Ocean Race, said Osborne.
Cricket Australia is also implementing a large internal transformation, centralising nine different IT departments across Australia and supporting staff, as well as cricketers, with the latest technologies.
The organisation’s 25-strong IT department supports Australian cricket from the grassroots to the highest level, including organisational IT, as well as fan-facing digital services.
HCL has 1,600 staff across eight offices in Australia.