Rick Allan Zurich Insurance Cloud Expo Europe 2020
Nayoka Oware [00:00:10] Hello and welcome to the London Tech Show 2020 by CloserStill Media, I’m Nayoka Oware. And today, I am joined by Rick Allan, the Delivery Capability for Zurich Insurance. Rick, welcome.
Rick Allan [00:00:23] Thank you.
Nayoka Oware [00:00:24] That is quite a job title. Could you please tell us more about yourself and also what your job title is? What does it mean?
Rick Allan [00:00:31] So I’m part of the I.T. function and we deliver a lot of software internally. We hear about partnerships to deliver software. And the way that that software gets delivered needs to change. A lot of companies are in the process of changing, including ours. So I’m really heading up the function that allows that change to happen. It’s changing the the capability of the company to deliver those kind of software solutions.
Nayoka Oware [00:00:55] See, now I understand. Thank you for that. You’ll be speaking later on today. Are you looking forward to that?
Rick Allan [00:01:00] Yeah. Always good fun. Always good.
Nayoka Oware [00:01:02] Of course, that’s what we’re doing. Tell us more about what you’ll be talking about, what will you share with the audience?
Rick Allan [00:01:07] So essentially today we’re talking about the kind of journey that I’ve been on with the company in terms of how you persuade people to change a lot of people when you’re talking about DevOps, when you’re talking about cloud. Think of it as a technology and a process and software. And I think with all of those elements, it’s far more about people than anything else because it’s the people who deliver it for you. So really, my kind of conversations today are going to be around how you understand your true problem statement, which isn’t with software to select, which cloud vendors select, but how you actually persuade the people in your company that they want to make that change and what’s in it for them. That’s the heart of my conversation.
Nayoka Oware [00:01:47] Thank you for that. Now, aside from the fact that you’ll be speaking today, why else did you choose to attend the expo?
Rick Allan [00:01:54] I think these things are always quite interesting from the point of view of what’s out there, what’s changing, what’s new. It’s kind of an opportunity to understand what your options are because it’s quite easy with your head down in any organisation to carry on doing what you’re doing and the ability to spend a day to kind of lift your head above the parapet and actually look around and see what your options are moving forward. What’s kind of fresh, what’s new is always an interesting thing to do.
Nayoka Oware [00:02:23] How long have you worked for Zurich Insurance?
Rick Allan [00:02:26] I don’t look old enough, but I’ve been there about 16 years now.
Nayoka Oware [00:02:28] You definitely do not look old enough.
Rick Allan [00:02:30] Good answer. No, 16 Years.
Nayoka Oware [00:02:31] Okay. I’m sure you’ve come across a number of challenges. Could you tell us what kind of challenges you face and how you resolve them?
Rick Allan [00:02:38] So my background is more IT project management and obviously every IT project brings its own set of unique challenges, be it big underwriting systems, claim systems, big decommissioning projects. As I said, I think a lot of those problem statements all face the same base issues, which is you’ve got a group of people in place A you need to take into place B. So how are you gonna get them there? And be that internal people, be that your customer base, be that your shareholder base, be that the kind of wider community. I think whenever you look at any big problem statement, you end up trying to persuade people one way or another to get there. And sometimes it’s carrot and sometimes it’s stick. And most of the time it’s an element of the two. But generally speaking, carrots a better option than stick. And so it’s how you incentivize people to want it rather than because they have to or they need to.
Nayoka Oware [00:03:31] It’s been an absolute pleasure speaking to you Rick. Thank you so much for your time.