As we continue to explore the most influential people in the contact centre industry, we are pleased to present the next 20 influencers. These individuals have made significant contributions to the industry through their thought leadership, expertise, and dedication to improving customer experience.
Daniel Taylor – Founder & CEO of CCSG
Daniel Taylor is the Founder and CEO of CSSG Group of Companies. An experienced leader with more than 20 years in the industry, Daniel is a successful executive who fosters talent, celebrates success, and challenges norms. Daniel has a strong understanding of customer, innovating service delivery approaches to deliver optimised results. Daniel applies an inclusive leadership style, looks for ways to enhance the employee experience to provide an environment that supports development, personal growth and career success. Daniel is generous with his expertise; he provides support, guidance, and insights to others within the industry, and is a well-respected industry leader. Daniel can be seen speaking at industry events where he provides his views on topical issues. A non-executive director on several boards, Daniel is invested in giving back to the community and broader industry. Definitely a leader to watch.
Celeste Carnovale – Customer Care Lead Asia Pacific at Hertz
Celeste Carnovale is an exceptional leader in the contact centre industry. Having dedicated herself to the Customer Care Centre industry for over 22 years, Celeste is the Customer Care Centre Lead for the Asia Pacific region. Despite the overwhelming people challenges, and operational challenges in the travel industry throughout COVID, Celeste has shown resilience and empathy with all the people around her. A strong advocate for people centred leadership, Celeste is highly regarded by peers across the industry and is regularly called upon to speak on panels where she is generous with her expertise. An inspirational leader to others, authentic, passionate, and effective, Celeste is the epitome of balancing a professional, people first approach with organisational success. A huge asset to the Hertz organisation.
Chris Purdy – Executive Director in People and Customer Experience at Accor
Chris Purdy is an innovation and continuous improvement specialist. A passionate, dynamic and results oriented leader, Chris challenges the industry to think differently about contact centres and focuses on results delivered through people centred environments. With a background in HR, Accor have benefited from this multi-faceted leader who was awarded the groups prestigious Rising Star award in 2022. An engaged and authentic leader, Chris is an industry leader worth watching.
Rod Lester – Manager Director at NICE
Rod Lester is the Managing Director for Australia and New Zealand (ANZ) for NICE. He is responsible for overseeing operations in the ANZ region, including driving local strategy and growth. With more than 25 years of sales and management experience, primarily in the ICT industry, Rod brings a wealth of knowledge to NICE. Rod’s interpersonal, negotiation, and relationship management skills are reflected in his long-standing career in the industry and strong connections at senior levels across the ANZ business community. An innovative and entrepreneurial leader, Rod continues to support investment within the contact centre and CX environment throughout Australia.
Nimesh Dhanak – Chief Executive Officer APAC of Call Design
Nimesh Dhanak is the CEO of Call Design, a workforce optimisation company that provides modern management strategies for contact centres worldwide. With over 20 years’ experience in the industry, Nimesh has worked extensively with Aspect Software, which merged with Noble Software to form Alvaria. He has an enviable reputation for delivering significant improvements and increasing profitability for contact centres. Nimesh is a visionary leader who is passionate about helping contact centres succeed through effective workforce management strategies. He has transformed Call Design as part of the leadership team into a leading international company through his commitment to excellence, innovation, and customer service. An industry leader, with a passion for service excellence.
Mia Lander – Managing Director at KPMG
Mia Lander is an executive who brings 30 years of global experience to build better customer and brand connections. An innovator, Mia spearheaded the first commercially available managed customer interaction analytics service in Australia and blends psychology, risk factors and technology to better understand and predict human behaviours. One of the early members of Australia’s contact centre community, Mia has served as the Past President of the Customer Contact Managers Association, has been a judge in several Asia Pacific Contact centre awards and was one of the earliest committee Members of the ATA (now Auscontact). With several published articles across mainstream and industry publications, Mia is currently researching better ways of engaging older adults in mental health self-service apps for her 2nd thesis. She currently works with KPMG’s Risk Strategy and Technology division, has an independent consumer research business and is Chair of JobCO, a not for profit designed to engaged disadvantaged adults in Melbourne. Definitely a seasoned professional who continues to bring fresh thinking to the industry.
Zahra Peggs – Chief People Officer of TSA Group
Zahra Peggs is the Chief People Officer at TSA Group where she is responsible for the attraction, recruitment, engagement, and development of a workforce of more than 4,000 people across the APAC region. Zahra is a contact centre strategist; her teams work across national and international markets, successfully navigating the challenges of the current labour market for TSA Group. With a focus on utilising best recruitment practices, industry leading learning and development, and workforce management technology as part of the recruitment delivery model, Zahra continues to challenge and innovate to ensure success for TSA. Zahra is a formidable leader, she is strong, passionate and an expert when it comes to people and fostering engagement. A powerhouse within the industry with the success runs on the board.
Emma Noble-Beasley – General Manager Contact Centres at Kiwi Bank
Emma Noble-Beasley is the General Manager Contact Centre at Kiwi Bank. With more than 20 years’ experience as a contact centre professional, Emma has worked in both the public and private sector. A highly motivated and results driven leader, Emma has influenced and developed organisational design, customer experience strategies, and led business transformation. Emma is a highly respected leader, recognised for her professional skills, her deep understanding of customer and the results she has delivered. Driving social change and digital adoption through cross industry collaboration, Emma is a thought leader and innovator within the contact centre and customer experience landscape. The recipient of several leadership and innovation awards, Emma supports emerging talent within the industry with her generosity and guidance. Values driven; Emma is an exceptional people leader who continues to leave her mark on the contact centre industry.
Michael Clark – Director at CXTT
Michael Clark has been involved with Contact Centres for more than 20 years, when he took a new role following a company restructure and was handed a set of blueprints to build a Contact Centre on the NSW Central Coast. This unexpected shift set Michael up for decades of success and nurtured his passion for people and results. Michael has led every function within the Contact Centre environment, before shifting to a CIO role where he influenced executives and invested in innovative contact centre solutions. Working in both the private sector and government, Michael has now founded his own business, CXTT Consulting which offers a range of services tailored to the Contact Centre and Customer Experience industry. The recipient of numerous industry awards, Michael has been invested deeply in the growth and development of the contact centre industry in Australia. A long term volunteer for the ATA, and CCMA, a Non-Executive Director on the Auscontact Board, Michael supports emerging leaders through his coaching and mentoring. You will see Michael present at various conferences across the country on the future of Contact Centres and Customer Experience, he is fierce advocate for the industry and in his new role as consultant, is supporting organisations to optimise their operations and grow their success.
Allan Godfrey – Chief Marketing Officer of Royal Lifesaving WA
Allan Godfrey has led Royal Life Saving Society WA (RLSSWA) marketing strategy for the past 20 years, which includes the successful growth of its omni-channel operations, 24/7/365 contact centres across 4 sites, direct marketing, fundraising and its broader digital and CX transformation. The RLSSWA contact centre network is the backbone of RLSSWA marketing and membership services. Established in 2002 to create regional employment opportunities in WA’s Southwest, Allan has led the sustained success of the operations, which has employed over 1000 people over the past 20 years and delivered an economic impact to the regions in excess of $80M. Growing through a social enterprise strategy, servicing over 30 clients and 40 campaigns, including major state and local government contracts, Allan is a committed and influential member of the community and the contact centre industry. Allan is a Fellow of the Australian Marketing Institute (FAMI) and a Certiﬁed Practising Marketer (CPM), and a Fellow of the Fundraising Institute of Australia (FFIA). Allan’s contributions to the community have seen him recognised with the prestigious Australian Long Service Order Medal from RLSSA. Allan is an authentic and genuine industry expert, trusted leader, and tactical executioner.
Craig Snow – Director Service Operations at Sydney University
Craig Snow is the Director of Service Operations at the University of Sydney. An accomplished senior leader with a demonstrated history of success working in a broad range of industries including Telco, Insurance, Higher Education, Finance and Outsourcing both locally and globally. Craig has an exceptional understanding of contact centres and customer experience, he has strong operational experience and is skilled across all functions of the contact centre environment. Craig is leading his team to deliver on the vision to lead the world in customer centric design for both staff and student cohorts in the sector. Craig is a big contributor to the contact centre industry in Australia, he is often seen speaking at industry events, showcasing his experiences and successes with peers and industry colleagues. Craig supports the talented members of the contact centre community, participating as a judge in the Auscontact Excellence Program, and gives his time generously to emerging leaders through mentoring and development programs. Craig is committed to giving back to the industry, recognising that sharing with and learning from the contact centre industry means better outcomes for everyone. Committed to redefining what best practise looks like given the extensive change within our industry, Craig is working on new thinking in relation to the customer journey, ways to measure true customer sentiment and leveraging data to drive prioritisation. A definite entrepreneur mindset, with a demonstrated ability to transform aspirational goals through to operational solutions and tactical initiatives. An absolute influencer within the industry.
James Johnstone – Director, Commercial Strategy at Datacom
James Johnstone is the Director, Commercial Strategy at Datacom. Starting his career in customer service, James has always kept the customer at the forefront of every interaction. This service orientation carried over into his career in IT managed services where he worked with iconic brands such as Microsoft, Fujitsu, and HP. Having built a foundation in front and back-office experiences, James has a unique perspective that allows him to support clients by navigating through the technology and service experience elements of a solution to solve a strategic objective. James practical experience is complemented by deep qualifications including an MBA, a Graduate of AICD, ITIL Certified, PRINCE2 Certified, is a Microsoft Certified Professional, and holds various certifications in IT and leadership. His role with Datacom stitches together his passions to enable him to lead service strategy for Datacom’s experience services which encompasses sales operations, business development, marketing, and commercialisation of experience services enabled by technology. Connecting these elements together offers an opportunity to create enterprise value for clients and provides growth opportunities for the people that deliver the services. James is generous with his knowledge, will be regularly found at industry events and conferences where he is committed to building the industry in an innovative and progressive way. James is an asset to Datacom and the customers he supports.
Timothy Witucki – President & CEO of Omada One
Timothy Witucki is the President and CEO of Omada One. With more than 25 years’ experience in the industry, Timothy is an accomplished, high-tech business executive entrepreneur. He is passionate about contact centres and optimised customer experiences, and has been part of building out multiple disruptive startups. An insightful thought leader, Timothy has had huge success building and operating international offshore and nearshore world-class remote operations. Timothy is a strategic leader, an innovative problem solver, and a passionate advocate for successful outsource model partnerships within the contact centre industry. He is highly regarded for his ability to pivot company strategy and direction, deliver top-line growth, and deliver operational strategies that provide bottom-line success. Definitely an impactful player within the industry.
Fran Southward – Chief Executive Officer of Auscontact
Fran Southward is the Chief Executive Officer of Auscontact, the peak industry body for the contact centre industry in Australia. Fran has more than 20 years in the contact centre industry at the executive level across both the public and private sector. Fran is a highly regarded CEO who is renowned for her insight and capacity to foster success. Fran is renowned for her deep expertise in contact centres, customer experience and strategic people leadership. She has brought fresh ideas, energy and passion to her role, introducing initiatives that will foster talent and strengthen the industry as a whole. Fran has won numerous leadership awards, is an incredible public speaker and considered a strategic thought leader who challenges the status quo. Her role as CEO of Auscontact will ensure the contact centre in Australia continues to grow and is seen as a valuable asset to the industry.
Alex Boland – Director Operations ANZ at COPC
Alex Boland is the Director Operations, ANZ for COPC. He specialises in consulting, auditing and training to improve revenue, reduce costs, and increase customer satisfaction. Alex has conducted industry research relating to contact centres and customer experience that is used across the industry. A well-respected industry leader, Alex is an industry thought leader who continues to use data driven insights to challenge organisations. You will see Alex presenting at industry conferences and events, showcasing his passion for the customer every time. Alex is an accomplished data analyst; he conducts trend analysis, linear regression analysis, multiple regression analysis and other technical analysis to help organisations understand the environment, trends, and support change. Alex is a strong industry professional who supports growth, development, and talent through his work as a judge for excellence programs, nationally and internationally. Alex is an industry advocate, who continues to push organisations to optimise the customer experience.
Margot Birbeck – Director Customer Operations at Prospa
Margot Birbeck is Director of Customer Operations at Prospa, Australia’s number one online lender to small business in Australia and New Zealand. Passionate about the Customer Experience, a commitment to learning and sharing best practices, Margot solves complex business challenges through data-driven customer centric solutions. Margot has over 15 years’ industry experience, including leadership positions within the technology sector, and has expertise scaling sales operations teams. Margot completed her dissertation in Customer Experience in 2009 at the University of Cape Town in South Africa and holds an MBA and a Bachelor of Computer Science. She is also a certified Project Management Professional (PMP). Margot is a recognised thought leader in customer experience, she is an agitator and industry disruptor, and focuses on closing the gap between business objectives and customer outcomes. An authentic and passionate leader, Margot is a leader to watch.
Julie-Anne Hazlett – Head of WFO Strategy at CallDesign
Julie-Anne is a seasoned customer service professional with extensive experience working with clients from various parts of the world, including Europe, America, Canada, South America, South Africa, and the Asia Pacific region. She specialises in implementing best practices in Workforce Optimisation, specifically in Workforce Management with her training courses well known globally. She is an accomplished coach and mentor, having helped many WFO professionals advance their careers and organisations maximise their technology investments as part of her leadership role as Head of WFO Strategy at Call Design. She is a passionate advocate for the contact centre industry, supporting emerging leaders to grow their skills and capabilities across the workforce management function.
Deepak Selvaratnam – Founder & Co-Developer of Snapshotz, Remotability
Deepak Selvaratnam is an entrepreneur, founder and co-developer of Snapshotz the customer service audit and benchmarking tool (launched in 2009) and RemotAbility – the remote work profiling and capability assessment tool (launched in 2020). A contact centre, customer experience, and customer service expert, Deepak is acknowledged as one of the world’s leading experts in customer service assessment associated strategy, technologies and operational execution. Snapshotz has a large local and global client base and collaborates with a range of Australian consultancies and others in over 30 countries. Deepak can regularly be seen presenting at industry events, hosting webinars, authoring articles and blogs on customer service. He is a respected partner of Auscontact, and the APAC region contact centre community where he uses data driven insights to showcase best practice operations.
Kristy Canning – Group Head of Customer Care at NIB
Kristy Canning is the Group Head of Customer Care at NIB. Kristy has dedicated more than 20 years to the contact centre industry, working across personal insurance, workers compensation and the health insurance industry. With a career centred on creating cultural programs that drive performance, foster and support career development, Kristy balances her people focus with a deep passion for enabling technology creation to drive self-service, automation and enable agents to focus on moments that matter. Creating centres of excellence where companies view contact centres as strategic assets rather than cost centres, is a legacy that Kristy continues to deliver against. You will see Kristy speaking at industry events and conferences, showcasing her successes and sharing her leadership philosophy. Kristy has been recognised within the industry with awards from Auscontact, Grist, NICE, Telstra and the icare awards program. Kristy has developed engagement and people focused operational programs, led award winning teams and continues to create purpose and direction within her organisation. Kristy is an asset to NIB, one who inspires others to succeed.
Michel Stutz – Manager Contact Centre Technologies at Jetstar
Michel is a strategic business development professional in the contact centre industry and corporate related services. An experienced contact centre expert in delivering sustained profitable growth, Michel has a reputation for innovative leadership of complex and multi-faceted operational businesses. Pivotal to success has been over 20 years of experience working in multi-cultural global business environments, including USA, Europe, Africa, Asia Pacific, and The Middle East. Michel has a track record of excellence in leadership and stakeholder management and consistently delivering industry leading business performance through growth, efficiency, and enhancement. Michel has had a long involvement with the industry, supporting this through his role on the Victorian State Auscontact Committee, before taking up a role as a Board Member for the association. Committed to growth, development and the expansion of innovative technology solutions across the industry, Michel is a key influencer within the industry.