update Insurance company GIO is undertaking a redesign of its online eGreenslips system through a student work placement program with University of Sydney student, Edgar Martinez Rico.
Jeff Smith, group executive for Suncorp Business Services (Credit: Suncorp)
Rico was selected to be in the project through the Co-operative Education for Enterprise Development (CEED) program. CEED is a private company that places students in relevant work experience roles in order to further their academic studies.
Rico will review and redesign the eGreenslips system over a period of six months by simplifying the system infrastructure, employing new open-source technologies and implementing improved error/exception handling processes within the system.
Jeff Smith, group executive for GIO parent Suncorp's Business Services group, said in a statement that the company "benefit[s] hugely from the energy, enthusiasm and new ways of thinking that students bring into the organisation".
Smith added that Suncorp could have hired an external contractor to complete the system overhaul, but preferred to give the opportunity to a CEED student.
ZDNet Australia reported last year that Suncorp had won an award for a claims monitoring program that other students had completed in their placement, which Suncorp paid nothing for.
Rico represents the latest student Suncorp has picked up to help undertake a major project. Although clients don't pay the students directly, they are asked to pay a fee to CEED for the program, a portion of which is used as a scholarship for the student. Suncorp paid $10,000 to the organisation. The typical scholarship payment is around $3000, according to a spokesperson, with a typical project requiring a commitment of three days per week on top of other classes.
CEED had relationships with Queensland universities, but had only recently begun to work with the University of Sydney.
Graham Willett, CEED director, said that the expansion into NSW brings with it an ability to source senior ICT students for one-term projects within the state, and the organisation will soon be able to offer work-placement programs within business, science and sustainable management disciplines.
Rico is expected to have a live date for the new system by the second half of 2010.
Update at 5:25pm, 28 June 2010: The article was amended to clarify that Rico is taking part in the project, not heading it up. The word freebie was also removed, since although the students aren't directly paid by the organisation they work for under the CEED program, the organisations provide mentoring and pay a fee to CEED, part of which goes to a scholarship for the student.