Chris MetzChief Technology Officer
Partnering with leading global technology platforms, to introduce innovative digital products to ambitious organisations, Newcastle agency, Mudbath is ready to take on the world. Chief Technology Officer, Chris Metz, taps into his focus on ingenuity and his passion for emerging tech to enable Mudbath to deliver tailored client solutions.
To say Chris Metz is excited about digital transformation, and the opportunity it presents to implement game-changing technology, is an understatement.
With a background in developing and optimising cutting-edge software across a range of industries, his career has been driven by a desire to build the local Australian tech scene, while enabling digital advancements that significantly improve businesses.
Chris was born and has lived in the central coast his entire life, and after working with an array of employers to improve their technology, he is now committed to making Mudbath and Newcastle a hub for Australia’s best digital experts.
A focus on ingenuity
When Chris Metz was growing up, he had his eye on the prize – Wimbledon, the Australian Open, the Davis Cup – but when a future as an illustrious tennis professional didn’t quite pan out, he leaned enthusiastically into another big passion, technology.
Chris began his career with Logistics Systems International, a company committed to using technology to streamline and improve processes for the rapidly expanding warehousing industry. He worked with a small team of developers engineering progressive software solutions, aligned with key hardware, such as the earliest handheld wireless RF scanners in the industry.
Before the introduction of CI/CD and even the establishment of GIT, the team relied on patching manually. This gave Chris a strong foundation in old-fashioned communication and collaboration – a skill he draws on today as a leader, partner and solutions provider.
After being recruited to Borg Manufacturing to similarly improve its software, he was head hunted to a developer role at Indue – one of Australia’s leading B2B technology solutions providers for banks and other financial institutions.
During his six years at Indue, Chris was promoted to senior developer and to developer lead, managing a team of direct reports on complex and diverse finance-based technology projects.
Chris was again headhunted in 2018 to Jax Tyres to run all the integrations to backend systems. He also worked on Australia’s first platform that used registration plate details to rapidly identify the right-fit tyres for any vehicle – an effective and innovative inhouse operations and marketing tool.
In 2019, Chris was invited to join the team at Mudbath, and since then, his appetite for pioneering new solutions – for seeing into the future and bringing it to the now – has only increased.
A passion for emerging technology
Starting with the Mudbath team as a senior developer, Chris’s rise was meteoric. He was promoted to principal engineer with seven direct reports in just 12 months, and made the highly successful leap to Chief Technology Officer within two years.
As Chris’s role grew, so too did Mudbath, with the team and the locations continuing to expand to more than 100 people in 3 offices – Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne.
In that short time, Chris had delivered several major projects, tailoring each solution to the unique needs of the client, and considering all of their challenges and opportunities to ensure every milestone was strategic and beneficial.
Key to his success has been his ability to identify emerging solutions – often new to the market and rare or unseen in Australia – for clients with a range of distinct requirements. Along with Claire Dawson, Mudbath’s Chief Commercial Officer, he has introduced new partnerships with global platforms that are delivering innovative and unequalled solutions within their niche.
His capacity to look into the future, while never losing focus of the now, has enabled him to consider both short-term and long-term goals for Mudbath’s clients, and deliver digital transformation that will help them achieve both.
As CTO, Chris is dedicated to not just making Mudbath a leader in the technology of ‘right now’, but in future-proofing the businesses of its clients, by implementing solutions that improve outcomes today, and tomorrow.
Delivering tailored client outcomes
Chris has been, and continues to be instrumental in leading and delivering Mudbath client projects.
One of his earliest successes with the agency, was also one of its biggest projects at that time – delivering two applications to the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) over a 9-to-12-month period.
The first application provided the means for controllers to monitor trains, identify issues, mitigate down time and keep trains on schedule. The second application provided partners with an accurate and up-to-date schedule for all passenger, freight and coal trains in the Hunter Valley network.
Following the completion of the initial project, the client was extremely happy with the outcome, and as a result, it has continued to commission multiple iterations of the work, over three years.
"What keeps me excited? It’s the mixture, the opportunity to go all the way from solution architecture to rescoping, to jumping in and getting deployments done. It’s the fact each day is varied; it’s tech but it’s such a diverse role. It’s the variety within the role, I have the opportunity to work on the initial solution architecture, assist the team in understanding client requirements and see the project go live."
Like Claire, the Michael Hill project is also an important point of pride for Chris. While he was introduced into the team after the project commenced, he played a leading role in devising a solution that allows for a gradual immigration away from Sales Force.
The project – a headless eCommerce migration including transitioning to Contentful – had the potential to affect Michael Hill ‘s online sales if the SEO and performance of the new site didn’t follow best practices. As a market leader with a large online presence, Michael Hill could not take that risk.
Chris proposed a page-by-page migration from old to new architecture, as an alternative to an entire migration of content all at once. His team tested the theory on a non-vital page, before moving to the crucial homepage, with great success.
This approach notably de-risked the project, and was implemented alongside best practice in user experience design.
At Mudbath, and in client and partner circles, Chris is known for his robust skills in investigation and his commitment to thoroughly exploring complex problems to determine the most strategic and best approach to a project, to deliver the most efficacious outcome.