Telstra no longer has a CMO

Christopher Furlong/Getty Images
  • Telstra has axed the role of chief marketing officer.
  • The latest restructure has written the job out of the senior executive team.
  • The function will now drop down to be applied more directly within Telstra business units.

Missing from the major restructure of the senior executive team at Telstra today is the role of the chief marketing officer (CMO).

This once-powerful role, wielding considerable budget to market services at Australia’s biggest telco, has been written out of the top tier of the organisational structure.

It has devolved back into the business units of Telstra, closer to the customer front line.

Leaving after this month is Joe Pollard, who joined Telstra in 2014 initially as Group Managing Director Marketing and Media before becoming Chief Marketing Officer and Group Executive Media. She is a former CEO of NineMSN.

Here’s the new Telstra senior executive team:

Source: Telstra

No mention of marketing.

In the new structure and operating model, changes are being made to bring functions closer together to enable speed and agility in how we bring products and propositions to market,” a Telstra spokesman told Business Insider.

“Marketing will work in a more integrated way with teams who develop propositions or solutions for our customers.”

This means that marketing will be applied at the next level down from the senior executive team.

Telstra insiders confirmed that the role of CMO is not part of the organisational structure announced today.

When Joe Pollard leaves on August 20, Jeremy Nicholas, the current Executive Director Marketing, will be acting Head of Marketing until the changes come into effect on October 1.

In general, marketing is being challenged within organisations as the champion of customer engagement.

“Many of the most vital points of interaction are often not owned by marketing,” says Harvard Business Review.

“To meet the organisational need for integrated experiences across business units, many CEOs have created new roles like Chief Digital Officer, Chief Experience Officer, Chief Customer Officer, or Chief Growth Officer.

“This expansion of responsibility for customer engagement beyond marketing raises questions for the future role of the CMO.”

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