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Basterfield takes the helm at Clarus

Basterfield takes the helm at Clarus

Press release, 23-Sep-2008, Clarus, Christchurch, New Zealand: IT veteran, Susan Basterfield, is heading up the Christchurch arm of Clarus - Canterbury’s growing full-service IT consulting firm - allowing founder Edwin Dando to further the expansion of Clarus Group. The company specialises in helping clients increase productivity and reduce risk in large and complex IT projects by providing valuable skills resource, consultation and project management services.

In less than 2 years, Clarus has turned the IT consulting world on its head with its values-driven approach to addressing the ICT skills gap.

This dynamic firm already has an invitation-only community of 90 highly skilled consultants, a management team of six, and 400% revenue growth in the last year. Edwin Dando attributes this success to the company’s focus on trust and transparency.

“The Clarus difference is adding value to people and providing clients with a flexible workforce that sets the market rate. What sets us apart from other IT consulting firms is the fact that we don’t charge exorbitant consultancy rates. Instead, we help our consultants to set their own rate and pass a nominal percentage commission to the client. The consultant gets the training, finance and community support as part of their Clarus membership, while the client gets the benefit of reliable expertise, senior IT consulting and project management with real transparent bottom-line results,” says Edwin.

Clarus’s impressive client list includes Meridian Energy, House of Travel, PGG Wrightson, Goldpine, Mike Pero Mortgages, Fulton Hogan, AMI Insurance, Jade, Axon, Argos, Statistics NZ, NZ Cricket, and more.

Ms Basterfield, who has a long and impressive track record in the IT industry since 1981, assumed the role of General Manager at Clarus Christchurch on 18 August.

Originally from the United States, Susan’s career comprises a string of achievements including having built the regional sales and channel networks for large corporates IBM, Tektronix, and Vistorm in the UK (now owned by EDS).

When she was just 21 Susan was crowned IBM’s top channel sales person in the US. Later, at MicroAge – the first large computer franchise in the US – she established and led the corporate account team charged with delivering mainframe solutions. In 1995 Susan relocated to the UK and joined Tektronix as territory manager for London. Within months she was the Sales and Channel Development manager for Tektronix in Northern Europe.

In 1998, Susan rejoined IBM as Northern European Channel Manager and was soon responsible for integrating all channel partners following the Tivoli merger. A year later she was approached by Vistorm in Manchester who offered her the challenge she was looking for – to head up the new business development of a start-up company.

“By 2003, with increasing interest in ASP, SaaS and Internet Security, I helped grow Vistorm from 42 to 312 staff before taking on the role of Director of Development. These roles involved considerable focus on staff dynamics and inter-relationships – valuable experience that will help me at Clarus,” says Susan.

Later that year Susan and her husband Colin relocated to New Zealand to manage personal friend AJ Hackett’s international operations.

Three years later, in early 2006, she re-entered the IT industry and joined Gen-i as Client Manager and Enterprise Solutions Specialist.

“Everyone on the team at Clarus has worked within the IT industry, and we know that people find challenge more motivating than money and prestige put together,” says Susan.

“Clarus was established to address two major needs – the need for industry to find skilled staff who they can rely on to make a difference, and the need for an IT contracting community where people can enjoy a challenging, values-driven and motivating work environment that fully supports their chosen work-life balance.”

While Susan is not one to shy away from a challenge, she also appreciates a work-life balance, and her personal life is as breathtaking as her career history. She loves New Zealand and the ability to enjoy outdoor pursuits within minutes of the office - especially kitesurfing, snowboarding and mountain biking. Even her wedding was breathless – pronounced husband and wife on a bungy jump!

“We’re delighted to have such a high calibre manager onboard to run the Christchurch operation,” says Edwin. “Susan not only has tremendous drive, skill and insight, she also understands on a personal level the importance of work-life balance – values that match those of both our clients and our people.”


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