JT’s new MD steers telco through choppy waters
WHEN it comes to a crisis, you want an experienced steady hand on the tiller.
So, when the Covid-19 pandemic hit locally, and saw resulting lockdowns, JT’s newly appointed managing director for the Channel Islands was ready to help navigate the choppy waters to ensure critical connectivity remained in place.
Daragh McDermott has worked with the telecoms provider for almost 20 years, so has a wealth of experience and knowledge to call upon – including flagship projects.
Previous roles include having been the operator’s corporate affairs director and company secretary.
Reflecting on his first few months in the post, Daragh said: ‘First of all, it’s been far different to what I expected, for obvious reasons. When the board decided to make that appointment, we had our business plans in place for the year, and it was a matter of delivering on those plans in 2020 and thereafter.
‘But that was turned on its head very, very quickly. We had to focus on ensuring that we’re providing the network and the services, and everything in between, to move from a working-from-office environment to almost everybody working from home or schooling from home or communicating from home. That made a huge difference in terms of management of the effort, focusing on people and aligning of resources.’
The company was also able to move existing development plans faster, underpinned by strategic investments over the past decade, to meet a predicted ‘demand bubble’ that arrived much sooner as a result of the Covid-19 situation.
Looking to the future and how we can ‘build back better’, he says ongoing investment as well as working with governments is key. In addition, what happens next with fibre rollout in Guernsey and 5G – the next generation of mobile technology – in terms of licensing and roll-out timeframe is also important.
Understanding what collaboration is possible across the islands, with the Channel Islands competition regulator now being split into Jersey and Guernsey bodies, is another important consideration.
. Read the full interview in the July edition of Business Brief at www.briefci.com.