Spotlight Series: Katie Lam
Meet James Fraser, Digiterre’s Director and Chief of Staff. James recently celebrated 10 years with the company. In this article James looks back on this time and explains why he’s remained loyal.
I first joined Digiterre back in 2012. I met Digiterre’s CEO, Ian Murrin some years before that and knew him on a social level. So, when the business lost its Office Manager, they reached out to me to see if I’d be interested in taking on the role for a few months. I agreed to help out and the rest, as they say, is history.
In any business, a CEO needs people that are loyal to him. As I knew Ian, I already had some personal loyalty and at the time I just wanted to help him out. I didn’t know too much about Digiterre but my previous experience of working with a small professional services IT company meant that I knew the ropes and the business context.
These days I’m Chief of Staff and this means that I work closely with the CEO to make sure that the overall strategy of the organisation is being delivered, as far as possible, with the resources that are available. I am involved in many different initiatives across the business, which I really like.
A typical day? Every day starts with the Senior Management Team stand-up, followed by a catch-up with the marketing team. Then anything could happen! I think it’s fair to say there is nothing typical about my role, which keeps things fresh and interesting.
The culture of Digiterre is one of professionalism, great people and a high work ethic, which drives the exceptional quality of delivery The thing that struck me from day one was how good Digiterre was to its people and how amazing the client delivery was. Often in IT you spend a lot of time with clients ironing out issues and delivery concerns. This just isn’t the case at Digiterre, and it continues to amaze me that such complex IT projects can be delivered so effectively and efficiently.
Without losing any of the technical quality and diminishing the delivery success, we have very much beefed up the commercial side of the business, specifically sales and marketing, getting a broad range of the team involved in the sales cycle. These sales are often very complex so it requires highly credible technical input and a degree of tenacity to get deals over the line. The organisation is more mature and commercially aligned than ever before.
There have been many highlights over the past decade but one of the standouts must be winning a whole bunch of awards for the quality of our technical delivery. Another is building a marketing function that is very high quality and punches above its weight in the sector.
The variety of work, no day is the same. Because I have so much experience in the business, it means that I can bring my knowledge to everyday issues, and this stops us from making the same mistakes and reinforces the need to repeat successful actions. Of course, I also really like the people I work with! It’s a great team, and that makes coming to work a lot easier.
Don’t take the role if you just want a job. You need to want to be part of a business that is ambitious and hungry for continuous expansion. This requires a certain viewpoint, commitment, and attitude. If you want to actively make a difference in a dynamic and fast-moving organisation, this is a good place for you.
Get into IT early in your career at whatever level. By trying lots of different roles, you can really understand how the business works and what your specific niche might be. These are exciting places and there are so many opportunities that are technical and non-technical. Find out what your purpose and passion is by experiencing as much as you can.
There’s still the drive for expansion and growth. Our CEO always thinks big, which makes you constantly think about innovative ways to contribute and make the best of your resources. Never a dull day!
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