Slyp marketing leader also becomes chief of staff

Fintech extends role of its marketing chief to also overseeing executive decision making

Retail fintech player, Slyp, has extended the role of its head of marketing to chief of staff in a move it says will help streamline executive decision making around strategy and growth objectives.  

Jude Blankfield joined Slyp as head of marketing in October 2020. Prior to this, she was VP of marketing for ecommerce tech company, Rokt, and spent 10 years working in PR, marketing and events locally as well as in New Zealand and the UK. Clients over this time included Sony PlayStation, Procter & Gamble, V8 Supercars and Masterchef.  

As Slyp’s first chief of staff, Blankfield is tasked with creating efficiencies in decision making for the fintech’s executive committee, supporting business strategy and laser-focusing decisions based on the goals of the organisation. She also retains her marketing remit and will work in association with the group's head of people by acting as an extension of the CEO and broader executive team in helping drive forward people and culture initiatives.

Jude BlankfieldCredit: Slyp
Jude Blankfield

Slyp has created a smart receipt technology that’s now back by all four of Australia’s big banks. The company received $25 million in Series A investment funding in February 2022 led by former PwC boss, Luke Sayers, and supported by Catch Group founders and brothers, Gabby and Hezi Leibovich.  

“I’m thrilled to have been appointed Slyp’s first chief of staff and to be working directly with our executive team to get Slyp Smart Receipts into the hands of one in two Australians by the end of this year,” said Blankfield. “Our proprietary Smart Receipt technology is the logical next step in customer experience transformation and I’m excited to have greater involvement in curating the gold standard in frictionless and personalised shopping experiences for Australians as we scale in 2022 and beyond.”   

Slyp co-founder and CEO, Paul Weingarth, said Blankfield’s strategist mindset was the trigger for her expanded remit.  

“Since joining the team, Jude’s counsel has been instrumental in driving Slyp’s credibility and growth in key markets,” he stated. “Her experience in the startup ecosystem and entrepreneurial mindset is makes Jude a natural fit for the chief of staff role, and I look forward to working closely together as we take Slyp’s growth strategy to the next level.”

CMO and chief of staff: A unique combination

Combining CMO with chief of staff is an unusual one, recruiters and executives speaking to CMO agreed.    

Managing partner at 100Percent Partners, Michele Philips, said the need for a chief of staff often comes from the CEO seeing different functions working in silos, and wanting to transform or scale up a business. She noted over the last year, the executive recruitment firm has placed two executives also fulfilling chief of staff duties.  

“Chief of staff is a title that originally came from government - we do see them in corporates although the specific title is not that common,” Philips commented. “In the absence of a chief of staff title, this role may fall to one of the other executives, be picked up by a project management office, or simply not be filled.”  

Typically, those taking up a chief of staff position include strategy consultants and people with an HR background. However, Philips said marketers are well placed to assume the role.  

“Marketers can bring two things together: They often work cross-functionally across the business, so they have relationships with stakeholders across the business and they see how the different departments work together and where things may not work,” she explained. ”They also have a strategic focus on growth and the customer. With the desire for the company to deliver its strategy, they can then look into the organisation and see the things that are preventing this from happening.  

“In addition, marketers often have good levels of resilience, a passion for change and build relationships of trust - all important attributes of a good chief of staff.”  

Philips noted several career and learning benefits to the managers that take up these roles, not least of which is working closely with the CEO. This offers a form of apprenticeship around broad business issues that the executive may not otherwise get if they were focused just on one function, she added.

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