Interface magazine – Issue 17

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I s s u e 1 7 • w w w.t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t

To p f i v e


tech companies

Diving deep into the customer experience

Marsh UK: the new normal and associated risks – Alistair Fraser, CEO of UK Corporate at Marsh

Dr Paul J. Bailo: Digital Transformation: The Trilogy

Executive Insights

Listen to our latest podcasts

Lars Feldskou Group CPO of Danish Crown discusses a centralised global procurement function


Sarah Golley

Tania Seary

VP of transformation at Virgin Media, put people first in digital transformation

Founder of Procurious, on ‘falling in love’ with procurement

Welcome to issue 17 of Interface This month’s cover star is Alistair Fraser the CEO of UK Corporate at Marsh who has given us an exclusive insight into the massive transformational change at the insurance brokerage, that seeks to help enterprises survive and thrive during a global pandemic… The COVID-19 pandemic’s economic and social impacts are driving significant shifts in global political risk — introducing n ew d y n a m i c s a n d a c c e l e rat i n g ex i st i n g g e o p o l i t i c a l megatrends, such as trade protectionism and the transition to a multipolar world order. “We segment our service delivery to clients based on their size and needs around risk and insurance,” explains Fraser, from Marsh’s Bristol office. “Our role is to advise our clients on their insurance and risk requirements so that they can manage risk in a more controlled way, helping them to protect their business, roll out new products and services, and continue to thrive.” Elsewhere, we speak to Erik Vogel, Global Vice President, Customer Experience at HPE to see how the global, edgeto-cloud Platform-as-a-Service company is transforming the customer journey with GreenLake to provide an ‘everythingas-a-service’ offering… Plus, we have the third and final instalment of digital strategist Paul Bailo’s Digital Transformation masterclass, and an exc l u s i ve w i t h M a d s Fo s s e l i u s , C EO a n d Fo u n d e r, D i xa who reveals the secrets to succeeding in this ‘new world’. And we speak to Michelle Murphy, Superintendent of Rim of The World Unified School District, who explores how a digitalisation of the classroom begins and ends with the success of the student in mind.


EDITOR Dale Benton


CONTRIBUTING EDITOR Nell Walker Kevin Davies




VP TECHNOLOGY Andy Lloyd Craig Daniels

VP PROCUREMENT Heykel Ouni Greg Churchill Richard Deane

PRESIDENT & CEO Kiron Chavda

Enjoy the issue!

ndrew Woods, Editor in chief A



Marsh UK


HPE Greenlake



Customer engagement: in a postpandemic world


Dr Paul J. Bailo: Digital Transformation: The Trilogy







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Marsh UK – the new normal and associated risks WRI T T EN BY PRODUCED BY



Andr ew Woods Al ex P ag e

Left: Rachel Hoyle, COO of UK Corporate at Marsh

Interface magazine interviews Alistair Fraser the CEO of UK Corporate at Marsh and Rachel Hoyle, its COO, regarding the massive transformational change at the insurance brokerage, that seeks to help enterprises survive and thrive during a global pandemic‌

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Alistair Fraser, CEO of UK Corporate at Marsh




OVID-19 has turned the world on its axis. The health and wealth of nations have been hit on a global scale not seen for a lifetime.

Governments, enterprises and the public at large have had to reconfigure their operations and behaviour amid

an ongoing crisis with no clear exit strategy in sight. Marsh is an insurance broker that excels in the expertise it provides to its clients: risk. When a client turns to Marsh to assess and manage associated risks with its operations, it trusts Marsh to provide the best fit, in terms of insurance and insurer. Marsh – with over 35,000 colleagues operating in more than 130 countries – is the world’s leading insurance broker and risk adviser and helps clients quantify and manage risk whilst also unlocking new opportunities for growth. The notion of ‘risk’ associated with any human or business function gathers a sharp clarity when the world is gripped by an invisible killer. It is down to enterprises such as Marsh to provide some element of comfort and assurance to its clients amid a rapidly changing environment. To this end, Marsh published the Political Risk Map 2020: Mid-Year Update, providing risk ratings for 197 countries across nine perils covering the security, trading, and investment environment from January to July 2020. One key finding from the map found that all 197 w w w.t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t



Everyone has different needs. And they change all the time. What doesn’t change is the urge to take business to the next level. You need to work with experts who can innovate. And keep you grounded in reality. As a mutual we are wholly devoted to our policyholders and partners: providing continuity and assurance in an unpredictable world.

For Mutual Advantage

Liberty Specialty Markets (LSM) is a trading name of the Liberty Mutual Insurance Group (LMIG). For more information and the Privacy Notice, please see

Building digital solutions that add value The digital revolution shows no signs of slowing down and traditional markets, such as insurance, are embracing digital solutions now more than ever before. Liberty Specialty Markets (LSM) specialises in underwriting and claims handling, providing brokers and clients with a wide range of product capability and capacity for specialty insurance and reinsurance markets worldwide. The company is committed to advancing and enhancing its digital offering to brokers and clients, having developed a number of key digital platforms and initiatives to maintain its service levels in all situations. “We have three pillars; commercial insurance, specialty insurance, and re-insurance,” explains Carol Baker, Head of Customer Proposition. “Through our commercial insurance pillar we typically have more interaction with our insured clients in a retail environment. That’s where we started to really look at developing digital solutions for our customers that could also add value across our specialty products.” LSM has recently launched their new global website in multiple languages. This website acts as the start point of a broker’s or client’s journey, providing them with relevant, dynamic information in the country where they operate. Another example where LSM enables brokers and clients to access dynamic information is through its Risk Reduce and Risk Appetite portals. Clients are given a 360-degree view of all risk activity from the moment LSM binds a policy. “It has a data-driven dashboard for the customer, which connect to their Liberty contacts, as well as their broker contacts, and allows them to interact through the site,” says Baker. “The broker has a view of this as well. It’s the same risk data, but it presents it differently for the audience. All of our risk engineering

WRI T T EN BY D al e B en t on

and claims activities, every kind of service point we have with that customer in terms of working with them on improving their risk, all of that interactivity is accessed centrally through the portal. It’s important for us to have really compelling value around our digital offerings. The broker articulates that to the customer as part of the Liberty proposition. When you are a customer of Liberty, you don’t just get the policy. You don’t just get standard services. You get this added value throughout the customer lifecycle.” In 2019, LSM was recognised by Placing Platform Limited (PPL) as the top syndicate for placing risks electronically. LSM works closely with a number of key strategic partners, one of which is Marsh; the global leader in insurance broking and risk management. Through a shared partner insights programme, which sees both Marsh and LSM gather information from across both organisations, the two can continuously identify opportunities to improve service and communication. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, this saw the two collaboratively develop a Virtual Rooms service. “Our relationship teams would have weekly meetings and provide feedback on performance, how we were communicating with them, and what issues they were finding both in the market and with customers - around support required because of the restrictions enforced by COVID,” explains Baker. “Through this we were able to discuss the concept of Virtual Rooms and work closely with them to identify further opportunities, ensuring that what we develop remains relevant, is fit for purpose and will allow us to continue to grow, not just from a competitive standpoint, but from a relationship standpoint as well.”

rated countries experienced an increase

Alistair Fraser, the CEO of UK Corporate

in their risk scores between January and

at Marsh, from Marsh’s Bristol office. “Our

July 2020, compared to 30% in the same

role is to advise our clients on their insur-

period in 2019. Of those that increased

ance and risk requirements so that they

in score, the magnitude of the changes

can manage risk in a more controlled

was also much greater in 2020. In 2019,

way, helping them to protect their busi-

97% of increases were small (0.1-0.4), com-

ness, roll out new products and services,

pared to 7% in 2020. Further, 40% of

and continue to thrive.”

score increases have risen between 1.0 and 1.4 so far this year. The COVID-19 pandemic’s economic

Marsh’s Corporate business provides risk management advice, insurance brokerage and claims advocacy services to

and social impacts are driving significant

mid-size and large organisations through

shifts in global political risk — introducing

its extensive network of 20 UK offices.

new dynamics and accelerating existing

Unsurprisingly, for a prominent figure

geopolitical megatrends, such as trade

at a company intrinsically linked to risk,

protectionism and the transition to a multi-

Fraser wants to discuss the COVID-19

polar world order.

pandemic. “As a business, there are lots

“We segment our service delivery to

of dynamics to a pandemic, not least to

clients based on their size and needs

a changing world,” he says. “Risk in itself

around risk and insurance,” explains

is changing for companies. If you look

“ I f you look at some of our clients who perhaps historically did a lot of sales and revenue through physical assets, they’ve had to pivot and do it through digital platforms now, which brings with it, different types of risk” — A L I S TA I R F R A S E R , C E O O F U K C O R P O R AT E MARSH



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at some of our clients who perhaps

across the UK got involved, took a posi-

historically did a lot of sales and revenue

tive attitude, and actually, I don’t think

through physical assets, they’ve had to

our service to our clients dipped at all. If

pivot and do it through digital platforms

anything, I think we’re probably closer

now, which brings with it, different types

to our clients now than we were previ-

of risk. You’re not just insuring the build-

ously because we are all engaged in

ing; you’ve got cyber risk, you’ve got

the video conferencing type technology.”

reputational risk, you’ve got client data risk plus many others. “The pandemic has resulted in some very

Like many business leaders there have been some COVID-related shifts in operations and process that could

interesting conversations with clients

still be here long after the pandemic has

as they’ve adapted to rapidly evolving events.

been successfully managed. “I’ve said to

As their insurance broker and risk adviser, our role is to help clients to navigate what are unprecedented, and at times quite frightening, times.” So, how did COVID-19 affect Marsh and its operations, while it was looking out for its clients? After all, Coronavirus sees no barriers to its spread. Fraser explains how Marsh mobilised when the impact of COVID-19 first hit: “Firstly, we mobilised through remote working extremely quickly and extremely efficiently. We’re very fortunate in that we’re an organisation that can transact its business remotely and already had a great deal of the infrastructure required already in place. On reflection, I think if we had tried to do something like that without the threat of a pandemic over us, it would have been a more challenging task. All of our colleagues 14


my executive team that if we go back to

meeting with clients for certain aspects

working the way we always worked, then

of our work, but for getting our experts in

we’ve failed. I think we’ve learned some

front of clients, the new world is provid-

brilliant new skills in terms of using video

ing us with a huge opportunity. I also think

conferencing to get access to each other

the pandemic has brought us closer as

across the country, and also getting acc-

a company.”

ess to our clients in a more efficient way.

The ability to shift operations in the way

I think our clients are more receptive to

Marsh has requires an agile and robust

having ad hoc meetings by video confer-

digital architecture, the result of an ongo-

encing rather than waiting for the formal,

ing transformative programme of digital

in-person meeting. I don’t think we can

change at the company. “Look, our focus

ever fully replace the formal, in-person

(the UK business) always has to be:

Video: Working With Kindness

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“ T he pandemic has resulted in some very interesting conversations with clients as they’ve adapted to rapidly evolving events” — A L I S TA I R F R A S E R , C E O O F U K C O R P O R AT E MARSH



where can we be better? Where can we make the colleague experience better? How do we make the client experience better? How can we be operationally better? How can we reduce inefficiency so that we can reinvest in talent and grow our existing talent? We’ve started to look at this in conjunction with our Executive Committee and with Rachel Hoyle, my COO, who’s been instrumental in driving this. A key focus is, where have we got inefficiencies in our process? And how can we use digital and technology to remove those inefficiencies?” “It’s much more than a digital transformation,” says Hoyle from her Manchester office as she outlines the transformational programme at Marsh. Hoyle details two global initiatives currently running at Marsh: Operational Excellence (OpEx) and Digital. “You cannot realise one without the other,” she explains. “Within OpEx are operational reviews, whether it be reskill alignment, BPI (Business Process Improvement) and enhancing offshore capabilities to digital technologies and solutions. These will create new business processes and customer experiences, fundamentally changing how we operate, which in turn enhances the colleague experience and provides value to our customers.” w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


A question often raised at the start of

these wants and needs, we are embrac-

such a process, is ‘Why are we doing

ing change and encouraging growth.

a digital transformation?’ “Regardless

A well-executed digital transformation

of the current climate, our clients and

will ease the burden on many fronts. It

colleagues are ever evolving and chan-

can streamline operations without com-

ging, and so should we,” Hoyle explains.

promising client service, and increase

“As an organisation, by responding to

employee efficiency while reducing



overhead costs.” Fraser echoes this: “It’s

do that? Our trading system, end -to-end;

about how do we make ourselves as effi-

are all the stages necessary, and if they

cient as possible, remove duplication of

are necessary, do we have the right infor-

effort, improve the client experience, and

mation in it? So, it’s that constant review

improve the colleague experience. So

of that, and then down to what client facing

that’s right down to how we do our invoic-

technology we want to deliver for clients

ing. How can we use robotic software to

that isn’t just a fascia for the business,

Video: Marsh: A Digital Transformation

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but actually has real value to the client. Quite often companies rush to put out client facing technology because they feel they should have to, but does it really add value to the client experience? If it doesn’t, then there’s no point in doing it from my perspective.” Marsh’s digital strategy focuses on emerging ideas and technologies, innovation, data labs, new digital products and insurtech collaboration, strengthened data, the client digital experience and analytics tools. The key focus, according to Hoyle however, is ensuring, at the heart of it all, that there is an “excellent experience for both colleagues and clients”. End to end trading platform benefits for colleagues include: automated workflow, single data entry and manual rekey -ing reduction, the pooling of client records in one single place and accurate market intelligence. Clients benefit from improved client service, quicker binds, standardised documentation and swift invoice production, Hoyle enthuses: “Digital solutions free up colleague time to focus on client services and the higher-level tasks, giving them increased job satisfaction and career development.” Marsh’s transformation programme is fuelled by a collaborative spirit both internally and externally. “We have global relationships that extend to a local presence,” Hoyle explains. “Internally we have the Digital & Data Community, which allows us to build connectivity among colleagues sharing good practices, updates on local and global tools and initiatives, and enlists us as advocates for deployment of new digital applications into our business areas. What’s key throughout all of this is that we learn and grow together along the journey.” 20


“ Regardless of the current climate, our clients and colleagues are ever evolving and changing, and so should we” — R AC H E L H OY L E , C O O O F U K C O R P O R AT E MARSH

Of course, digital transformation is a journey and not a destination. “It’s made huge improvements and we continue to prod and press and get feedback on what does, and doesn’t, work,” Fraser explains. “It all comes back to how, ultimately, we improve the colleague and client experience. And actually, if we improve the colleague experience, the client experience will improve anyway. There’s no replacement for the human connection in an advisory business like ours; we will always have that. It’s how we use digital technology to make the advisory piece as beneficial to the colleague and the client.” For a business like Marsh, data is everything and a datadriven strategy runs through every aspect of its organisation to make informed decisions for clients. “I think the opportunity now is how do we digitise that data so we can use it both locally and internationally to help w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


clients across the world,” Fraser. “Quite often we’ve had pockets of data in different parts of the world and people haven’t seen it or had access to it. Digitising it makes it far more accessible and beneficial for everybody.” “We are a business that bases itself on doing things the right way,with integrity,” says Fraser. “And for me, that’s absolutely sacrosanct for any business that I want to operate with. I joined Marsh 13 years ago not only because of Marsh’s size and its expertise, but the human factor. The business has a great soul, which is down to having fantastic experts all over the world who can support clients, colleagues, and communities alike.”



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DIVING DEEP INTO THE CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE We speak to Erik Vogel, Global Vice President, Customer Experience at HPE to see how the global, edge-to-cloud Platform-as-a-Service company is transforming the customer journey with GreenLake to provide an ‘everything-asa-service’ offering…



Andr ew Woo d s Cr ai g D ani els


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or many sectors and enterprises,

the experience we are creating for our

the notion of a customer jour-

partners aligns to their expectations,”

ney, has been virtually non-ex-

explains Erik Vogel, Global Vice Pres-

istent until fairly recently. The digital landscape turned all of that on its head however,

ident, Customer Experience at HPE. Vogel leads the Customer Experience

and now the delivery of a seamless and

Area at HPE with regards to its Green-

painless customer journey can be make-

Lake solutions. “About a year-and-a-half

or-break for every business right now,

ago, I became part of the HPE GreenLake

regardless of sector. No more so, than in

team,” he tells us. “We’re really focused on

the sales of the very hardware, software

customer experience and I think of my-

and services that facilitate the digital realm.

self as something of a customer expe-

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) is in the midst of a multi-year transformation to offering their entire portfolio as

rience zealot. I'm customer obsessed, which I have to be, in the markets we’re in.” HPE has been offering a GreenLake-

a service by 2022. This is no small feat,

type model for the past ten years and it

as HPE is a large company offering serv-

was last summer during HPE’s Discover

ers, storage, networking, consulting and

event that Antonio Neri, the HPE CEO,

support as well as financial services. To

made the announcement that the comp-

successfully navigate this pivot, HPE has

any was pivoting to an everything-as-

embraced the importance of a customer’s

a-s ervice company. HPE GreenLake

journey through its many offerings and

brings the cloud experience to apps


and data everywhere, enabling speedy

And HPE is focused on delivering a better

adoption of transformative technol-

customer experience by gaining insights

ogy to simplify operations. GreenLake

from both direct sellers and partners. The

delivers public cloud services and infra-

customer experience needs to extend to

structure-as-a-service on premise, fully

anyone who interacts with the customer,

managed in a pay-per-use model at the

regardless of the logo on their badge. “We

edge, in colocations, and in the client’s

spent time with our key partners like CBTS

data center. “We’re offering everything

that really informed us about the expe-

we have as a service underneath the HPE

rience they need to be successful. We

GreenLake brand,” Vogel explains. “We

lear-ned a lot from these discussions, and

are moving beyond just selling hardware



in a consumption model, to providing it as

loying any of the hardware or software

a true end-to-end service.”

required for the service.”

“As part of the end-to-end service, we

According to Vogel, when we think about

can extend the service to include soft-

as-a-service and how customers want

ware from leading providers. For example,

to consume and use as-a-service solutions,

we can add leading back-up and recov-

it's no longer about speeds and feeds;

ery software from Commvault or Veeam,

a faster processor or a faster server. “Now

on top of our GreenLake infrastructure

it's all about the experience and the out-

to provide a SaaS like experience for our

come,” he claims. “So, we've recognized

customers. In this model, we can give

we need to think differently about how

them a true as-a-service experience, for

we talk and interact with customers, to

backup and recovery, without the cust-

really get that customer obsessed view,

omer every having to worry about dep-

to provide that service with an experience w w w.t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


CBTS Client Benefits with HPE GreenLake Solution CBTS is an HPE Platinum and Inner Circle Partner with a strategic relationship in place for 30+ years. CBTS generates over $1 billion in revenue annually by supporting over 3,000 clients in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. CBTS employs 2,000 highly skilled associates holding 260 HPE technical and sales certifications across the entire HPE and Aruba portfolios


over-provisioning, enabling the client to


have instant access to capacity for business

A global asset management firm turned

growth, and most importantly align the

to CBTS for assistance when refreshing

cost of IT infrastructure to the client’s busi-

their data center infrastructure for mul-

ness usage and technology requirements.

tiple locations in the United Kingdom THE IMPACT: A 5 year partnership between THE STORY: A US-based, global integrated

the client, HPE, and CBTS represented by an

asset management company focused on real

HPE GreenLake service agreement executed

estate, credit, equity, and other financial as-

via the HPE GreenLake for Partners program.

sets that serves clients across North America,

The resulting solution for this client is a mod-

Europe, Asia, and Latin America approached

ern, optimized, and agile data center based on

their CBTS support team to assist in address-

an innovative pay-for-use service platform with

ing a challenge for their business. The client

immediate access to on-premises variable ca-

had a need to refresh their data center infra-

pacity ensuring a sustained business outcome.

structure for multiple locations in the United Kingdom. With past refresh projects requiring


a significant amount of capital, the client was

The extensive HPE portfolio of products and

seeking an innovative and collaborative solu-

services is critical to our ability to assemble

tion through CBTS. A partnership with CBTS

comprehensive, valuable, and innovative IT

and HPE was required to deliver a solution with

solutions for our clients. By taking advantage

the latest technology, sized effectively to sup-

of HPE certifications, local training events, HPE

port the client needs, and structured to align the

Discover, and webinars our CBTS team is

costs of the refresh and new IT infrastructure

always at the forefront in understanding the

to the business usage. The partnership journey

latest products and innovations available

began with a discovery discussion, assess-

from HPE. Our clients benefit from the CBTS

ment, multiple technology review sessions,

HPE subject matter expertise and our exten-

sizing discussions, platform reviews, a trip to

sive experience in delivering HPE solutions

HPE Discover, and a comprehensive review of

across multiple industries in the global market-

the HPE GreenLake solution.

place. CBTS greatly values our relationships and access to HPE executives, our executive

THE SOLUTION: A thorough review of the

sponsor, partner business managers, and other

client’s IT requirements and technology needs

strategic resources. Our relationship with

determined that the new infrastructure would

HPE enables CBTS to support our valued clients

be optimized by a combination of HPE Synergy,

and earn their business in the most complex

HPE 3PAR, and HPE StoreOnce. The solution

situations while maintaining a trusted advisory

was delivered via an HPE GreenLake service

relationship over the long term.

agreement to eliminate the extensive cost of

“It's very difficult to lay out a CX transformation or a CX journey without understanding where you are today? What does it look like today? Where do you want to get to? What are the customers saying? What are they looking for from you? What do they need from you?” — ERIK VOGEL G L O B A L V I C E P R E S I D E N T, CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE, HPE

that our customers are demanding. My

some hardware in and let them try it. But in

role is to really focus on the experience.

the services world, it becomes a do-it-them-

Are we providing the right experience?

selves model. They want to kick the tires;

Are we delivering the outcome that our

they want to try and test things. They want

customers are looking for?”

to talk to other developers, or they want

One of the first things HPE tried to under-

to talk to other data scientists about what

stand in terms of the customer journey

they're doing in a community forum. They

was how a customer navigates through

want to pose questions.”

“the awareness phase”; how they learn about the HPE GreenLake service, whether that's through marketing or social media channels or communities or forums. Once through the awareness phase, customer move into a conversion phase, where “Now they've heard about it and they're going through, ‘Is it going to work for me, and do I want to buy it?’ And ultimately making a buying decision and thinking differently about what types of content, collateral and information clients need in the as-a-service world. In our traditional transaction world, we'd send a seller out with a PowerPoint deck or we'd drop 30


The next stage of HPE’s investigations into

when I order a pizza, why can't I see my

its customer journey centred around the

order status real time when I've ordered

purchase process. How do they want to

a HPE GreenLake solution?’”

buy? “You think about services, now you

As HPE reconsidered both the conver-

buy with a credit card swipe or an app on

sion and the purchase processes, it organ-

your phone. Even though maybe it's not a

ically led to the building of an experience

direct competitor of ours, one of the things

that its customers were expecting once

we've learned about experience is we're

they’d bought it. How could they stand

now being judged across the broad set of

that up and think differently about getting

experiences our customers interact with.

the infrastructure right? “Customers want

It's no longer just competing against Dell

things fast,” says Vogel. “One of the key

and Lenovo and saying we have a better

pillars of our experience is speed, and

experience than Dell. We have to have an

we don't have time to take 90, 120 days

experience that's on a par with Uber, Apple

to go build hardware and put it through

and Disney, and some of the big banks.

our supply chain and get it to a customer.

Our customers are saying, ‘Hey, if I can

Because they want this as-a-service, the

see my delivery status real time on Domino’s

expectation is ‘we want it right away’. So,

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Follow the Data. Always On. Always Protected. HPE & Veeam LET’S GO

we had to start rethinking that operating

expecting? And bringing in that voice of

process; that end-service that's delivering

the customer to start rethinking what this

an outcome.”

experience needs to look like. We started

The final phase of research and devel-

with understanding the journey map, and

opment involved a focus on ‘renewal and

really defining the journey a customer is on

a growth’. HPE is determined that the cust-

with these six stages we're using: aware-

omer should be “so happy and so delighted

ness, conversion, purchase, initiate, oper-

that they continue to buy it over and over

ate, grow/renew. And that was the first

and add to it because it's been such a

step in really understanding that this is diff-

good experience. “My job has been to

erent to the journeys our customers typi-

understand that end-to-end process and

cally go on if they're buying a transactional

start to rethink how we approach these

product. So, the first step was to lay that out.

six different journey stages our custom-

“The second step was to get the data

ers are going through, relative to what the

and the analytics behind it. It's very difficult

industry’s doing? What are our customers

to lay out a CX transformation or a CX



journey without understanding where you

fast, and whether this is from what they're

are today? What does it look like today?

used to in cloud or SaaS providers that

Where do you want to get to? What are the

they've gotten accustomed to where they

customers saying? What are they look-

can go and sign up and, in a day, or two,

ing for from you? What do they need from

it's up and running. They don't have to buy

you? So, we started with some customer studies commissioned by analysts. We did some of our own customer feedback where we went out and talked to customers and started to bring that together to get a good handle on what customers are looking for from an experience. What would be a great experience in our customers’ minds?”

“ B eing customer-centric, means we’ve got to be listening, watching and understanding what our customers are doing” —


Customer experience is perceived, and only the customer can decide if it was a good

hardware and deploy things; they get it

experience or not.”

right away. Or cloud, where they really

As a product company, one of the funda-

could swipe a credit card if they wanted

mental shifts or insights HPE gleaned was

to and have an environment in 10 minutes.

to look beyond speed-to-market by flipping

But speed was paramount because their

the telescope to focus on the customer’s

businesses are accelerating and getting

end view. “When we move to this as-a-ser-

more competitive. The business cycles

vice or the CX model, it's really about

are shortening. What used to be a slow

starting with the customer in view,” Vogel

cycle business is now standard cycle, and

explains. “What's the value we can add to

what's standard cycle is now fast cycle,

the customer? Where do they want to get

and what is fast cycle is hyper fast cycle.

value, because it's not about that faster

Or business cycles are compressing from

server, it's about value to the customer.”

18 months to 12 months to six months, so

A result of commissioning these cust-

they have to work much faster. So, as a

omer viewpoint studies, Vogel and his team

result, speed was critical. We recognize

established what they refer to as their

that a key component of the experience

three North Star principles; the first one

we had to provide was speed and think-

being speed. “So, customers want things

ing about not just whether the processors w w w.t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


and equipment is fast, but the end-to-end

for example?’ What kept coming up was,

journey from ‘OK, I've heard about it. Now

‘It's easy. It's simple. It's standardized. It's

I want to test it, I want to demo it, I want

intuitive.’ Whether it's learning about the

to try it. I want to make sure it's going to

service, getting a price for the service,

meet my needs. I want to buy it, I want it

operating the service, provisioning some-

deployed, I want to be operating it and

thing from an operations perspective,

generating value.’ Because every day we

we had to think about each stage of that

delay in getting them that solution, we are

journey and say, ‘How do we make that

delaying the value they're going to cre-

easier and lower effort for our customer?’

ate from that solution. So, speed is critical.”

And understanding that the task of our

The second principle is what Vogel calls

customer is not just operating the envi-

‘low effort’. “So, in the CX world, we talk

ronment, but a customer may come in and

about effort or ease. We have to make

say, ‘Hey, will this interact with my other

things simpler and easier, and when we

environments? And I want to learn about

talk to customers about, ‘Hey, what do

that.’ Or ‘I want to get a price for this solu-

you love about your cloud experience,

tion. I don't want to take a month waiting


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for quotations. I want to be able to do that quickly because I have to move fast." So, we had to think about low-effort, and that was another key component in how we make things easy across every stage of the journey and reduce the amount of effort in the task that our customers are working on. Every interaction has a goal associated with it. They're doing it for some reason, and how do we make it easier to reach that goal?” The third ambition represented the provision of differentiated value. HPE did not want to go out and declare themselves

conversion and purchase, traditionally

another Amazon Web Services, Microsoft

we've done that in an analogue motion.

Azure or Google Cloud. “We have to really

By that I mean we send a seller out with

focus on what we do well. What is our busi-

a PowerPoint deck or we do a traditional

ness, and how can we differentiate and

sales call. In the as-a-service world, cust-

provide value in ways that those other

omers want to do a lot of it themselves.

cloud providers cannot do or SaaS provid-

So, we had to create a whole digital front

ers cannot do; including our traditional

door where customers can come in and

competitors, the Dells or Lenovos of the

learn about HPE GreenLake. They could

world. How do we continuously provide

read testimonials, join communities and

that differentiated value? Those quickly

get a price for the purchase process. They

became our North Star principles. So,

can estimate their own price by filling in

we have this journey we built. We talked

a few details about the size of their envi-

to customers, we established those North

ronment and what they're looking for. We

Star principles that it has to be fast, it has

started to simplify and digitize that aware-

to be easy, and has to provide differen-

ness conversation and purchase process.”

tiated value, and those were absolutely critical.” “When we think about awareness and

HPE then started to harness the customer feedback to understand what, and why, things were happening within the w w w.t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


“I think my favorite quote on this whole CX thing is what Walt Disney said. He said, “Do what you do so well that your customers will come back and they’ll bring a friend.’” — ERIK VOGEL G L O B A L V I C E P R E S I D E N T, CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE, HPE

GreenLake experience. Vogel and his

platform. And that will be a key component

team deployed Qualtrics as a CX plat-

as we're continuing to grab and gather that

form and data aggregation platform. “We

customer data.”

were already good at what I would call

Integral to the development of any

the operational data. So, we would see

successful customer journey is feedback.

how many people would click and how

What do the customers think? What do

much time they would spend on the site.

the customers want? HPE is continu-

We had good visibility into what was

ing its interaction with clients to finesse

happening. What we didn't have visi-

its offerings. “Being customer-centric,

bility into was why it was happening. So,

means we've got to be listening, watch-

we started to deploy Qualtrics, and we're

ing and understanding what our custom-

in the process now of deploying that site-

ers are doing.” Vogel and his team then

wide across the entire HPE GreenLake

provide this knowledge to their frontline



employees; the sales teams and account

there might be something here.’ It gives us

teams. “Because we recognize that when

a much better view of what's happening

we think about product decisions and

in the world of the customer, and again,

where we want to go with a portfolio, we

being customer obsessed means we have

expect to get a lot of detail and data from

to be constantly listening to the customer.

our customers telling us what they want.

We have to think about our sellers, our

But we also expect to get good informa-

account teams and even our partners as

tion internally. We're now allowing our

well as our customers.”

sellers to provide that type of feedback

Digital is key for HPE with everything

at scale where we can now do analytics

available on demand, whether thar’s infor-

on it. We can triangulate, ‘Hey, we heard

mation, quotes or confirmation. HPE is

this account team say this and we had

also focusing intently on personalizing

these three customers say that. Hey look,

the experience with the data its collecting w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


regarding its customers. The final piece of the jigsaw is the move to making everything omnichannel. “What I call seamlessly omnichannel,” Vogel explains. “Again, it used to be they would come to our website to look at speeds and feeds. We'd send out our seller with a PowerPoint deck, very single channel, very easy. But now these services are being bought by different personas, the channels where they consume and receive the information is different. I think my favorite quote on this whole CX thing is what Walt Disney said. He said, "Do what you do so well that your customers will come back and they'll bring a friend.’ So, we're doing what we do well with the on-prem in the data center and we're doing it so well by doing it fast, doing it easy and offering this differentiated value so that our customers are coming back. In fact, we have a 90+% renewal rate, and a very high NPS (net promoter score), so, they're maybe not bringing a friend, but they're telling a friend. They're promoting our service to their friend. And that’s a great feeling.”



Erik Vogel Global Vice President, Customer Experience HPE

Erik is customer obsessed with an innate passion for customers to not just fix their problems, but to delight them. And he is dedicated to unifying the way HPE employees view Customer Experience (CX). As the CX leader for HPE GreenLake, Erik is driving the CX focused transformation to delivering everything as-a-service by making sure HPE lives and breathes a customer-centric approach. Erik is a powerful storyteller who, instead of presenting customers as numbers can bring the customer to life in rich detail. This allows him to make complex topics easy to understand, share insights, and present data in actionable formats to make it relevant and meaningful. And Erik believes in connecting a great customer experience to a clear and concise measurement framework and treating metrics as an asset because they offer key insights into what customers want and how to make them happy.

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Pt3: Culture We catch up with digital strategist Dr Paul J Bailo, who reveals the third part of his digital transformation masterclass‌



Andr ew Woods

D I G I TA L T R A N S F O R M AT I O N : T H E T R I L O G Y P T 3 – C U LT U R E


I believe that our final chat within the Digital Transformation Trilogy is based around culture…

– our beliefs, our religions, our upbring-

The first of our trilogy into what consti-

world. These are basic perceptions, deep,

tutes a successful digital transformation

embedded thoughts in our minds, shared

centred around leadership, and this was

beliefs, and even unconscious feelings,

followed by planning. But the glue to

right? Who we are and what we are as

keeping this all together is the culture.

human beings have developed through

And culture's very hard to define for a lot

where you lived, what zip code you lived

of people, but it's really the essence of

in, your friends, your family, your religion

what your organisation is about. It's truly

and your background. And these are the

understanding what your value systems

values we bring into an organization, which

are. When we think of who we are and what

are fundamental to this idea of culture. So,

we believe we bring to an organization

you're mixing all these different values in


ing and what mom and dad taught us – we bring in our feelings of how we see the

D I G I TA L T R A N S F O R M AT I O N : T H E T R I L O G Y P T 3 – C U LT U R E

order to drive a digital culture, in order to

is everywhere in every aspect of the

set the right mindsets and behaviours that

business." These are traditionally very

could be shared with all the members of

hard things for organisations to dev-

the organisation.

elop in their culture. And it's this idea and belief of who this organisation is

So, when we talk about the digital culture, it's really about organisational change and transformation?

and what they stand for. And this digi-

Historically, organisations talked about

down to the frontline people. The cult-

siloed use of digital, but now we're talk-

ure is the foundation for the business’

ing how every department needs to be

success in digital. It's this stable envi-

digital. When you start talking about

ronment in which organisations behave

keeping everything in a small group and

and hold everyone accountable. I think

collaborating, we're saying, "No, digital

of culture almost like baseball in a sense.

tal culture needs to be reinforced on a daily basis from the executive leadership


Baseball? How so?

consistently reminding ourselves and the

So, baseball is a set of rules and every

employees, and the team members, and

player knows that these are the rules.

the shareholders of what we stand for in

There's a first base man, second base

this digital culture. It is the mindset and

person and third base person. There are

behaviours that we agree to, to hold each

rules and regulations on how you behave

one and police each one to hold everyone

in the game of baseball, so when people,

accountable. Understand that by doing this

the players go out in the field, everyone

in our culture, they will reap the benefits of

knows what to do. With our digital culture

this digital change and digital landscape

we need to know the norms that we beli-

by agreeing that this is how we're going

eve in, and the values we hold true, and

to support each other in our overall digital

the actions we expect. These actions have rituals and behaviours and routine processes that are digital, and there's a digital culture, which basically serves their structure. These structures are a digital structure of org charts, and products, and mission statements that build the digital culture, in order for organisations to be very successful in the execution of digital initiatives. It's this idea of the digital culture driving the actions, the mindsets, and driving the mindset at the root of the cultural change that must exist, in order for organisations to be successful in this current world that we're living and the constant change. The focus of digital is not just about the actions alone, it's about the actions and the change that must happen in our heart, minds, and souls in these organisations that are transforming to be digital. It's who we are and what we stand for, and 46

D I G I TA L T R A N S F O R M AT I O N : T H E T R I L O G Y P T 3 – C U LT U R E

“ Culture's very hard to define for a lot of people, but it's really the essence of what your organisation is about” — D R PA U L J B A I L O

culture. The values, the behaviours, how we talk to each other, how we behave with each other, how we execute as a team together.

What are the tangible benefits to this cultural approach? It’s through minimal disparity and a sharing of the high risk of failure. Support is built into the culture. Taking a massive risk is built into the digital culture. It is extremely hard to change the culture because you're truly trying to rewire people's minds. And in legacy organisations, most people hate change, so you have to think about the power structure in this idea of digital culture, and this idea that decisions need to be made quickly, efficiently, very fluidly, and to constantly evolve in this idea


of continuous improvement, which means that the culture will be evolving with it also. It's the values and beliefs that the organisation hold as one. It also is the emotional piece. It's truly, how do you want to work? Is this a place that you want to belong to? Are your personal values aligned with the digital values of this organisation? What are the values, right? The values that this organisation holds true in this digital arena, are a critical part of the culture, absolutely critical. Digital is forefront and the lifeblood of these organisations that must have a digital culture in order to survive. There's no way companies are going to survive, banks, financial institutions, insurance companies, if they continue to behave in the way they're behaving. Clients will not come to them, they will leave them in droves, if they are not bleeding edge digital organisations that have a culture pushing the envelope in transformation and change. Even the idea or ideas of decision-making, in a digital arena, are fast and furious. It's not this big, long, legacy type of committee, in order to say these are now the decisions. It's fast and furious in order to keep up with the marketplace. It's the idea of strategy on a continuous, unending basis. It's the idea that digital will change the way organizations conduct business. 48

D I G I TA L T R A N S F O R M AT I O N : T H E T R I L O G Y P T 3 – C U LT U R E


It's seeing the power shift within an organisation? Right! This digital culture is driven by the outcomes. And it's this idea of digital culture which causes this power shift in the organisation. And this is very egotistical, right? This idea of digital culture is a power grab for some people. It's a mindset rewiring. It's a behavioural rewiring. It's an adjustment of values and behaviours. It's a way of policing each other in a way that maybe some people get very uncomfortable. When we're thinking about this, it's this idea of culture which is one of the core pillars of a digital organisation, and looking at these digital organisations in order to be much more efficient and effective in this brutal environment that we're currently in. It's also building relationships, understanding that the idea of digital culture is a never-ending learning environment. Apple doesn't have the best products or the best services, but they react to the market extremely quickly. They react to it because they have a culture of learning, both on the soft skills and the hard skills. They understand the challenges of digital technology very quickly because their culture supports this idea of never-ending learning. A true digital culture within the -tal culture in an organization is an 50

D I G I TA L T R A N S F O R M AT I O N : T H E T R I L O G Y P T 3 – C U LT U R E

organisation that takes care of its employees and upskills them. It identifies the skills that employees need to be competitive, identifies the skills that organisations need in order to drive cultural digital change. When we talk about digital culture, we’re discussing a massive shift in the way organisations think and behave and the organisational structure, the power structure, and executive mindset change. It's really this idea that digital skills are required in every level of leadership, that training is necessary and the best practices of digital are required.

“ Apple doesn’t have the best products or the best services, but they react to the market extremely quickly. They react to it because they have a culture of learning” — D R PA U L J B A I L O


Customer engagement

in a post-pandemic world Mads Fosselius, CEO and Founder, Dixa reveals the secrets to succeeding in this ‘new world’ and how firms must consider different ways to engage with customers that enable them to build more fruitful and profitable relationships…




Mads Fos s el i us , C E O a n d Fo u n d e r, D ix a

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egardless of which industry you operate in or the product or service your organisation

provides, a major component of success depends on executing a strong customer engagement strategy. Yet doing this well in 2020 has proven difficult for many organisations due to the ongoing effects of the pandemic on consumer buying habits. So, to succeed in this ‘new world’ firms must consider different ways to engage with customers that enable them to build more fruitful and profitable relationships. This is crucial in the UK, especially when 54


you consider that it is now in recession and

customer engagement, therefore, has the

consumer confidence is historically low.

potential to pay dividends down the line.

Therefore, to improve, businesses need to focus on what they can do to rebuild and

But, how and where should organisations start as they strive to improve?

repair in these final months of the year and relationship building with customers, in an

Continuous and valuable interactions are key

effort to win back spend and loyalty.

Customer engagement can be defined

beyond. Part of this involves focusing on

This is where improving customer engag-

as the continuous and valuable interac-

ement has a powerful role to play: two-thirds

tions between a business and its custom-

of companies compete on the quality of

ers. Running a successful business is not

their customer experience and 96% of cons-

only about attracting customers to your

umers agree that customer service is key

website, converting them with a stylish

to their purchase decisions. Ramping up

landing page, taking their money, and w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


thanking them for their custom. That’s cru-

can be — especially when you know exactly

cial for ongoing success, sure; but engag-

what you need, but can’t find a single person

ing customers and cultivating valuable

to ask.

relationships long-term takes entirely more finesse and should be the focus. Businesses trying to make a major impact

This isn’t to say that there’s no place for a well-executed automation strategy, in fact, automating standard, repetitive tasks will

on their industry, or niche, must therefore

promote speed, efficiency and effective-

understand their core audience, pain points,

ness in your customer journey, as well as

budgets, shopping habits, goals, the most

providing your agents with a better working

appealing options available to them, etc.

experience. However, this automation must

before they can start to really engage them.

be introduced in a thoughtful way, with a

A successful company focusing on customer engagement will use this data to anticipate buyer needs and position itself as the ideal solution in light of this information. Catering to these target consumers’ requirements and delivering a quality service can help secure shoppers’ loyalty too; as highly engaged customers are likely to keep coming back, make repeat purchases and recommend the business to others. So how do you do it?

The key to engagement is empathy and automation Anyone who’s ever called a support line and been greeted by a never-ending list of options, seemingly without an agent in sight or had to contend with an ineffective chatbot for that matter, will understand how frustrating ‘poor’ automated service 56


clear strategy helping to shape its impact on your business. The right customer service software can intelligently determine whether an inquiry

can be handled with pure automation, if it

understand their target customers and reco-

needs the human touch, or if it can be done

gnise which problems they are experienc-

with a mix of the two. Contextual routing

ing. This is fundamental to ensuring they

and sentiment analysis are just two of the

are catering to the right people and trying

features that can help you drive customer

to solve the right issues.

engagement and offer a superior customer experience.

Customers’ pain points and situations may have changed dramatically since

As with most things in life, balance is key,

the onset of the pandemic and acknowl-

and a combination of automation and hu-

edging this is important. Many customers

man-to-human connection is important to

might feel vulnerable at the moment with

many customers, especially in times like

a future that seems less clear than ever

these. And that’s where empathy comes in.

before. So, companies must work hard to deliver the level of service customers

Knowing customers’ needs

need and deserve. This means businesses

To become empathetic, businesses must

must take a fresh look at their audience

“ Artificial Intelligence is, in fact, created by humans. And it isn’t a new fad or concept” — MADS FOSSELIUS, CEO AND FOUNDER, DIXA

w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


to identify any unmet needs and be more

can make calls and take part in live chats

empathetic towards them as they adjust to

in their own home; but it is likely to be a very

a new way of life. This might mean slowing

different working environment than the

some processes to allow agents extra time

office they’re used to. Businesses should

to listen to customers on calls or live chats.

be honest with customers about their new

Customers will appreciate this effort and it

customer support set-up too and remind

will benefit your business in the long run.

them that employees are doing their best

But, what about customer service agents themselves? Life may be more challenging

in unusual circumstances; and thank them for their patience in advance.

for them, too. While more employees are is still recommended whenever possible

The role of omnichannel personalisation

in many places. Customer support teams

Customers interact with multiple

returning to offices, working from home



companies on a regular basis. Embracing

communications across phone, email,

more personalisation in your customer

chat and messaging, agents can instantly

engagement strategy will help your

access the information they need, all in

audience feel more valued as they deal

one place. This access to a customer’s

with you. That’s why 44% of consumers

interaction history enables an agent to

are likely to become repeat buyers after a

understand their previous issues, what

personalised service interaction and 39%

promises were made and what their

will introduce their friends or relatives to the

preferred com-


munication channel is. They’re not greet-

Fortunately, customer service software empowers brands to deliver a level of personalised service not previously possible. For example, by unifying

ing the customer cold and asking them to provide previously shared info. With customer recognition features in place to enable personalisation, support w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


teams can also collaborate and solve

to their needs and communication pref-

problems together, thanks to easy transfer

erences. This creates a stable foundation

and listen-in options. This reduces the

to build an efficient, effective, successful

time wasted, and frustration caused, by

customer service network upon —

bouncing customers from agent to agent.

no matter where employees are located.

Flexibility and adaptability lead to agility

How intelligent routing manages workloads

COVID-19 has forced many businesses

Through these trying times there will,

to pivot by making quick changes to their

no doubt, be fluctuating workloads to

operations and processes. Routines that had become established over years (or decades) were transformed almost overnight, as companies learned to adapt to survive. For companies who had already embraced remote work, the transition may have been easier. But businesses with no experience with online collaboration or communication had to learn on-the-go. This increases the risk of delays and disruptions to services — including customer support. Fortunately, flexibility and adaptability are the cornerstones of remote working, and embracing the right software solution empowers teams with the freedom to work from any location in the world as long as it has an internet connection. Agents still have access to all the analytics and customer insights they need to offer a personalised experience, engaging consumers with a service tailored 60


“ One of the most valuable aspects of AI, in the context of anti money laundering and compliance, is the speed by which it can be deployed” — MADS FOSSELIUS, CEO AND FOUNDER, DIXA

manage. Quality customer service software helps agents to cope and to pay equal attention to every communication channel. Employees can monitor all relevant channels in one place rather than switching between them again and again. This reduces wasted time and boosts efficiency. Additionally, as intelligent routing prioritises inquiries based on their importance, agents are unable to ignore more complex interactions in favour of more straightforward ones. As a result, customers won’t be left waiting for a response while “easier” issues get addressed sooner. There’s also less risk of making genuine mistakes that frustrate customers — even for remote agents. w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


Lastly, businesses can expand their customer support teams to accommodate an increase in demand in a more cost-effective and fast way. They can set new agents up and increase efficiency without trying to find more office space. As we near the last quarter of 2020, there is no doubt that it continues to be a tough environment for businesses to operate in. To survive and thrive, organisations will need to focus on developing and delivering the right kinds of customer communication strategies that drive customer engagement and loyalty. The strategies discussed, along with the right customer service software, can easily be incorporated into regular business processes and improve customer engagement, regardless of where customer service agents may be located.



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Rim of The World Unified School District: Technology and the teacher Michelle Murphy, Superintendent of Rim of The World Unified School District, explores how a digitalisation of the classroom begins and ends with the success of the student in mind



D al e Bent on Cr ai g D ani el s


w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t



hen we talk of the digital disruption of modern industry, our attention often turns to the

private sector. We hear many great tales of how technology is transforming the world of the financial industry or how it is revolutionising the retail space, but what of the public sector? Technology is part of our everyday lives, so how is this reflected in a particularly key area of the lives of our children and that of future generations? How is technology redefining the education experience? This is a question that Michellle Murphy, Superintendent of the Rim of The World Unified School District, has faced throughout her entire career. Starting out as an elementary school teacher, moving on to the role of Principal, then taking on the role of CTO before her current role as Superintendent, Murphy has been blessed with a full view of the education system and in

that forms part of her current role with

particular, how technology can and should

Rim of the World Unified School District,

empower the experience.

a Southern Californian district of six

“I always call myself the great transla-

schools that consists of a continua-

tor for the normal educator,” she laughs.

tion high school, a regular high school,

“I could navigate the line between the tech-

three elementaries and a middle school.

nologist’s perspective and what a normal

When Murphy joined in 2016, her unique

principal would want to know about things

perspective of technology combined

like cybersecurity or what an access

with the education ecosystem was key in

point is versus a router versus a server.”

defining the future of the district. Murphy

It is this ability to act as a translator

recalls; “Our tech coordinator was really



the experience to make good decisions about college and career? If they’re not exposed to technology, are we deploying the technology that can help them make those decisions about what they want to happy to have someone to talk to about

be when I grow up, or even know what’s

technology who really understood it.”

out there in the world,” she says.

When exploring the impact of technol-

“It’s about getting kids connected to the

ogy in the private sector, the measure of

world, and providing them with tools that

success is often an increase in efficiency or

can connect them to what is out there

enabling a seamlessness of process that

beyond our little mountain. For us, this

ultimately leads to more cashflow and profit.

is key to enabling success in their lives.”

For the education sector, the success of

The need for technology is clear so

technology implementation is defined by

then the question becomes one of capac-

one thing; the student. Murphy understands

ity; does the education sector have the

this. “We ask ourselves; have we given them

readiness and the capacity to embrace w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


digital solutions that will disrupt the class-

taught at every age level and seen what is

room experience? Over the last four years,

needed to transform those experiences,

Murphy has worked closely with the district

I can really support teachers and under-

to implement technologies and solutions

stand what the kids need and what we

where possible, but even she admits that

need in the classroom. It’s about making

it has not been without its challenges. It is

sure that we’re asking the right questions

here in particular that her experience as

before we spend $100,000 on a platform.”

a teacher and a CTO comes to the fore.“I

Murphy’s approach of asking the right

think a lot of times superintendents have

questions and finding the right answers

an IT person in as an advisor to answer the

before investing money is in itself a chal-

questions they dont understand and advise

lenging situation. Companies, and in this

on where the money should be spent on

instance schools, need to stay in touch

technology,” says Murphy. “Because I have

with the rapidly evolving technology



trends of the world around them and so this

at what long term goals we have and then

can cause a sense of panic and a need to

working with vendors that want to help

catch up or fall behind competitors. For the

us,” she says. “Relationships are really

Rim of The World Unified School District,

important and the vendors that answer

a small scale district that does not possess

questions and work with us to identify if

the large budgets that private businesses

their solution matches our needs, those

have at their disposal, any investment made

are the ones that make a real difference

in technology has to be the right invest-

for us and for our students.”

ment. The risks are higher and Murphy, for

This approach has proven incredibly

all her experience, can’t make these deci-

successful over her career and to this day

sions alone. “We’ve always looked at what

she can still call a number of the vendors

platforms fit our needs that are cost effec-

she works with and ask questions and

tive over the long term. It’s about looking

identify what she needs before investing,

“ I can really support teachers and understand what the kids need and what we need in the classroom. It’s about making sure that we’re asking the right questions before we spend $100,000 on a platform” — M I C H E L L E M U R P H Y, S U P E R I N T E N D E N T, R .O.W. U . S . D

w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


purely because of the long term and ‘real’

that those first steps for her were eye

relationships she has struck with them. “It’s

opening. In her previous role she had

just about asking for their opinion too,” she

played a key part in the nationally recog-

says. “It needs to be a two-way street. Not

nised WiFi on Wheels program, an initi-

just what do I need, but what’s your opin-

ative that saw a number of school busses

ion? We don’t ever want to be in a situation

turned into mobile hotspots parked over-

where they are recommending you the

night at various sites across the Coachella

Cadillac that they know you can’t afford but

Valley Community to provide WiFi access

the position you’re in means you are left

to students with limited home connectivity

with no alternative.”

so that they can connect at home to work

Coming into any organisation and looking to make changes is a journey that has to

on their assignments. In another successful program, Murphy

start somewhere. The early days of iden-

worked with a tech team of 30 to deploy

tifying and outlining the road ahead have

iPads to every single student of the

been described by many as some of the

Coachella School Valley District, in some

most challenging and Murphy concedes

cases deploying more than 1,000 iPads a



Contact Your Local Rep, Andy Hashimoto: 70 R I M O F T H E W O R L D U N I F I E D S C H O O L D I S T R I C T Learn More:

day to ensure that the 18,000+ students had the equipment they needed to be able to succeed. These successes were not without their challenges, but a key part of those achievements came from collaboration and that starts from day one. When Murphy sat down and began to discuss with her peers what was needed at the Rim of the World Unified School District, collaboration was something that had previously been lacking. “I met with every person that worked at the district office, because that was important to me,” she says. “I’d introduce myself and try to get to know them, but increasingly I found

of using the likes of Facebook and Twitter

that a lot of the staff had never set foot in

that can ultimately benefit the school expe-

the office we were sat in,”

rience. Where social media was once a hue

“That was not gonna fly with me. I am all

concern for Rim of the World, now it is used

about building relationships. My title may be

to promote the success of students and

different or even senior, but I’m no different

the good community work they do.

than the technology person, the teacher,

“It showed people that the approach

or the food service worker. We’re all on the

was not for me to come in and say we are

same page to get the job done together.”

implementing change and this is my road

Murphy spent a lot of her early days under -standing what she saw to be a limited use and understanding of technology. Where

or the high road. It’s about talking to people, modeling it and sharing my experience.” Murphy recalls wanting to include videos

some would see this limited understanding

of staff and students doing great things for

as a problem Murphy saw it as an oppor-

the community in her weekly superinten-

tunity. For example, social media in the

dents report, but as a result of that initial

education sector can be a difficult beast

lack of technology experience throughout

and so Murphy has worked with her teams

the district she didn’t have anyone who

to look at a more efficient and effective way

could film them for her. Her solution? w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


Take it upon herself to do it. “Sometimes it means putting yourself out there and being vulnerable. I’m going to do it, so if I can do it, anybody can do it,” she says. “I always bring it to people not as a command but as a request to say: let’s make our life easier through technology.” When working with technology, one can be forgiven for focusing solely on the successes. When money is invested, people need to see returns on that investment. Murphy has a different take and while she admits that success speaks volumes, the missteps or false starts speak loudest. When Murphy joined the district, she inherited a platform that had previously been purchased prior to her starting. This platform was aimed solely at the students but was expensive and highly labour intensive for the teachers to navigate resulting in teachers outright refusing to use it entirely. Murphy gathered the teachers together and asked them what they thought about it, why it wasn’t the best solution and what they needed from a platform to be able to do their jobs better and work with the students. “You have to be able to listen to the people that are actually using it,” she says. “ Then you find the right answers together, because I am not in that world every day so how could I make that decision for them?” The biggest stakeholders for Rim of The World are the students. So how does it ensure that they are at the very heart of everything it does and that decisions are made because they want and need it ? For Rim of the World, there is a great solution to this and once again, it’s built around listening. “We don’t just purchase a textbook without the teachers piloting several and then picking their own,” explains Murphy. 72


“ I always bring it to people not as a command but as a request to say: let’s make our life easier through technology” — M I C H E L L E M U R P H Y, S U P E R I N T E N D E N T, R .O.W. U . S . D

w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


“But again, it’s important to touch base

portrayed and what can we do to portray

with the people and the kids that are using

ourselves in a better light. I think it’s incredi-

it. I have a couple of committees and I

bly important to listen to the kids too.”

have a high school kid on every one.

2020 has been a year in which the world

We have a high school kid that’s on our

has been devastated by the COVID19

school board, we have a high school kid

pandemic. With major losses to life and to

that’s on the COVID taskforce, I have a high

business, countries the world over have

school student on my ABC team, which

had to enforce major restrictions in order

stands for Always Be Communicating that

to mitigate the challenges the virus is caus-

looks at social media and how we’re being

ing even now. Lockdowns and quarantines



have forced business and schools to close

she says. “They set me a certain goal back

their doors, but as the old saying goes

in May that would have taken around five

there is strength through adversity. Murphy

years to complete and we have actually

speaks to the way in which the chall-

done that this year. It’s done.”

enges thrown at her and the schools have

Elsewhere, Murphy recalls how the

actually presented an opportunity to move

Teachers On Special Assignment (TOSA)

forward quicker than ever before. “The

that she has across the district have

school board is my boss and they’re very

spoken of their disbelief at just how quickly

familiar with my tech background and they

teachers have been equipped with the

trust me with our technology purchases, “

tools and the skillset to use Google Classw w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


room, something that wasn’t on the agenda

Are kids learning? What are their grades

for 2020.

looking like? What are our graduation

“The technology that we were trying to purchase for the next five years would potentially be outdated by the time we got

rates going to look like? What could we do better?” While the future of the world remains

it because there was no refresh cycle” adds

uncertain, what is clear is that Murphy and

Murphy. “All of that is already purchased or

Rim of the World have a clear picture

on its way. We have 400 hotspots arriving

of what matters most to them and that

soon to get kids connected at home. Quite

is the success of the student. While

frankly, all of these things wouldn’t have

money may come and go, the main thing

happened. It’s quadrupled the speed of

for Murphy is that the right decisions

implementation which is fantastic, but it’s

are made and the right technology is in

important to remember that all of this is to ensure the safety of our students without jeopardizing their education. Four years into this journey and the mentality remains the same for Murphy and her teams across the district; listen. Through difficult circumstances, she has been able to take stock of what has proven successful in her time so far with Rim of The World and despite the implementation of technology coming quicker than she could have possibly anticipated, she can’t rest on her laurels and call it a day. Each day is a new opportunity to listen and to learn for Murphy. “Now it’s about really taking a look at the implementation,” she says. “Looking at what’s working and what isn’t, and how can you make technology engaging? Because yes we’ve moved teaching forward but is it engaging? 76


“ In our position, we must never stop learning or being open to learning” — M I C H E L L E M U R P H Y, S U P E R I N T E N D E N T, R .O.W. U . S . D

place to offer the best possible education experience for their students. But the education doesn’t start and stop with the students themselves, as Murphy notes; “In our position, we must never stop learning or being open to learning,” “Your way isn’t always the right way. I had a conversation with my assistant superintendent yesterday and I said; ‘Now, if you don’t agree with me, I expect you to tell me and I expect you to tell me why and it’s okay.’ You have to keep learning and that’s what we truly believe here at Rim of The World Unified School District.”

w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


UK Tech Companies The Sunday Times Sage Tech Track 100 league table ranks Britain’s 100 private tech (TMT) companies with the fastest-growing sales over their latest three years and is compiled by Fast Track and published in The Sunday Times each year. Here, we take a look at the top five....



Revolut Annual sales rise over 3 yr: 309.89% Digital banking services provider Founded in 2015, Revolut was established with a goal of creating a sustainable and digital alternative to the so-called ‘traditional’ big banks. With more than 12mn customers, Revolut looks to improve their financial health, empower them to have more control, and promote financial cohesion. The company was named Deloitte’s fastest growing UK FinTech company in 2019, and now takes the top spot in The Sunday Times Sage Tech Track 100. “With over 9 million Personal account users, and a quarter of a million Business users, the pace and scale of customer uptake demonstrates the vast need across the globe for better financial services”. In response to this, Revolut significantly bolstered its ranks and now has close to 2000 employees across the UK.




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2 82


Football Index Annual sales rise over 3 yr: 306.02% Football trading platform Put simply, Football Index is the UK’s first football-based stock market. Much like a stock market, users who know football and think they can predict the next big thing are given the chance to trade with the very best of them and make a profit. Founded in 2012 as a challenge to traditional bookmakers, Football Index is revolutionising the way people bet on football. “Stop wasting your hard-earned cash on your weekly 8-fold. Become a football Trader and find out what your footy knowledge is really worth.”

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Tessian Annual sales rise over 3 yr: 237.59% Email security provider Described as “The World’s First Human Layer Security Platform”, Tessian builds technology to empower people to work safely, without security getting in their way. The company believes that people shouldn’t have to be security experts to do their jobs and through its Tessian’s Human Layer Security platform, it automatically protects employees on email - where they spend 40% of their time - from risks like data exfiltration, accidental data loss and phishing. Since being founded in 2013 , the company has raised $60m from legendary security investors like Sequoia and Accel and has over 150 employees located in San Francisco and London.



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4 86



Pollen Annual sales rise over 3 yr: 232.62% Experience marketplace An international marketplace scale-up, “changing the game� in live music, youth culture and travel, Pollen continues to grow rapidly on both sides of the Atlantic with a unique membership model, featuring experiences that range from nightlife to the world’s best music festivals to travel experiences in Ibiza, Cabo San Lucas and Breckinridge. Following several successful acquisitions in the travel space, Pollen is now the market leader across North America, representing a $12 billion market. Pollen can boast of having 35,000 active ambassadors globally and through its white label solution festival and concert giants such as Live Nation and Universal Music group and revolutionise fan interaction, creating a closer bond, and converting their fans into their strongest sales channel.

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VoCoVo Annual sales rise over 3 yr: 221.32% Retail communication provider A globally recognised innovative retail team communication solutions provider, VoCoVo improves business efficiency and customer experience for some of the best-known tier 1 enterprises. It combines a deep understanding of team communications with a passion for driving efficiency through technical solutions. VoCoVo has an award winning and world leading team communication solution accessed by thousands of customers around the globe. Its mission is to introduce a completely new generation of team communication solutions with a sophistication and capability over and above anything currently available on the market. Higher levels of business efficiency across an enterprise, and increased sales and unrivaled customer experience for retailers are just two of the key advantages that VoCoVo can provide for its customers.



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The power of teaching. The power of technology Ray Stanley, CIO and VP of Marian University, tells us how an IT strategy empowers the student to unlock their potential



D al e Bent o n Cr ai g D aniels


w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t



echnology is an enabler. Whether it enables us to pay our bills, stream media, do

our jobs or simply access more information, technology is the crucial cog in our everyday lives. When we talk of technology in business, we think of huge digital transformations, IT architectures and omni-channel experiences to better understand and ultimately serve the customers, but what do we think of with regards to technology in higher education? Are investments in technology in this space purely to serve the needs of the business (in this case a college, or a university) or to serve the needs of the student? If it is purely the latter, then the technology is implemented with the faculty members in mind. To look at it from a business perspective, the technology conversation remains the same; the

base as a whole and that you're under-

stakeholders have different needs and

standing and aligning with the trends in

the number of them is considerably more.

higher education.”

“In higher education, we have many differ-

A technology man by trade, Stanley

ent groups of customers. We have the

joined Marian University back in 2016 with

staff, faculty and students and so being

a career defined by what he describes as a

a driver of technology is critical,” exp-

mix of “corporate” and government IT. He

lains Ray Stanley, CIO of Marian University,

moved to Marian University at a time where

a higher education facility that services

it had grown exponentially and needed to

nearly 4,000 students in Indianapolis,

reinvigorate its IT and technology architec-

USA. “But you also have to make sure that

ture to cater to the ever growing demands

you're listening to your entire customer

of the student. Stanley acknowledges the



differences of working in higher education,

adoption. You're not here to support a busi-

particularly when coming from a corporate

ness to make a profit, your goal is to sup-

background. “It's much different in corpo-

port the faculty to instruct a student for

rate America, where IT can completely

successful graduation and it's a completely

dictate direction and technology adoption

different mindset and a completely differ-

a lot of times. As long as they partner with

ent model.”

the business units, they can kind of dictate

Despite the different model and mind-

the path as far as where the technology

set, Stanley finds it an incredibly rewarding

is going to go,” he says. “In higher educa-

job and admits that he feels truly blessed

tion, the industry kind of forces you to go

to see students he’s worked with, and

where it needs to go in its offerings. You

knows personally, achieve their goals

also cannot force technology and expect

thanks in part to the work he is doing with w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


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the university. “It’s a very different feeling to producing profit for somebody,” he says. “Your goal is to not produce widgets, it's to successfully move that student forward in their lives, and to play a part in that is so incredible.” A common talking point in any IT discussion in business is how the IT function can become stronger and more effective as a partner to the business, rather than simply a separate office that is only needed when required. In higher education, and indeed Marian University, this is an important and ever-evolving conversation due to the needs of the most important stakeholder: the student. Students demand more and as a university that offer a multitude of degrees ranging from Doctoral of Ostephathic Medicine, Nursing and Biomed Sciences to Management, Marketing, Exercise Science and several other Arts and Sciences, where the technology needs to be truly leading-edge. “We have a leading College of Osteopathic Medicine and top tier Nursing School where a lot of the technology we're using is unbelievable,” says Stanley. “We have an assortment of full Simulation Labs where students learn through several technical avenues. In short order, we’ll be introducing a new 3D simulated operating table. It is a large touch-screen operating table with an image of a body on it. Students can use the touch-screen to stretch, open, twist, enlarge, and shrink the 3D images. It really gives students another level of hands-on learning that will help them better understand their practice, and ultimately more competitive for top residencies and jobs as they graduate.” Technology is a partner for the faculty for instruction, for students, for learning and for their on campus life. It's critical and it's certainly very interwoven into every part of the university campus. In Stanley’s own words; gone are the 96


w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


days of chalkboards as there is no room

with the students. Anyone who’s instruct-

for a university or college to be behind the

ing any class has to make sure that they're

times because they will quite simply be

maintaining a level of technological demand

forgotten. “Students want mobility. They

that the students expect.”

want mobile apps. We are working to grow

As part of his remit with the University, Stan-

with the students to provide their mobility

ley was tasked with looking at putting the

needs,” he says. “You have to evolve with

pieces together to fix what he describes

the students and the faculty has to evolve

as ”technical broken glass”. This consisted



of a number of cybersecurity holes, a

of partners, Stanley and his team are

lack of clear technology policies and an

constantly training and testing faculty staff

overall complex infrastructure. Over the

and students on a regular basis in order

past four years, he has focused largely on

to ensure that they are at a very high level

cyber security as his number one priority.

that’s required with regards to understand-

Given the increasing connectedness of

ing cybersecurity and better protecting

every part of the student experience, this

their data and that of the faculty. “We've

was a no brainer. Working with a number

also had to really beef up our infrastructure in terms of internet bandwidth,” he adds. “Wi-Fi, of course, is huge for students. We went from a single one gigabyte pipe coming into campus to where we have two 10gb connections coming in and right now we are also getting ready to bring a third vendor in so we have a three-way composite if one goes down.” With a number of years focused on getting cyber security, networking and infrastructure to the required levels of a growing university, eyes are now focused on a significant cloud migration that will see Marian University leave the data center days behind. Breaking away from the traditional (and ultimately costly) colocation approach represents a big change for Stanley and his teams. “We talked about the mobility that students demand and to be honest, there really weren't a lot of mobile devices on campus, other than cell phones when I got here,” he adds. “We were tethered to PCs and we had a few iPads and so we have flipped that on its head. We really w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


don't invest in PCs anymore. Everything is

what is a key measure of success for

on laptops now. So, we've really had a monu-

Marian University? For Stanley, it goes

mental shift in our technology exposure

back to the student. The student and

over the past four or five years and I think

the success of the student are what

that will change even more the next four or

drives the IT strategy.

five years.” When operating in the technology space,

“For us we look at the retention rates. If we have a student on campus and the

making big investments and implement-

classes aren't what they expect or the

ing new processes and new solutions the

technology experience isn't what they

pressure to provide real tangible results is

want, they'll go somewhere else and

high. This is only natural and the pres-

that's very well documented,” he says. “So,

sure is no different for Stanley and the

we've really helped increased our retention

higher education sector. In the corporate

rates through a positive student-IT expe-

IT space, results can be defined by cost

rience.At 83% our retention rates are above

savings or an upswing in customers but

the national average, which is a big number.


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“ Your goal is to not produce widgets, it’s to successfully move that student forward in their lives, and to play a part in that is so incredible” — R AY S TA N L E Y, C I O, V P, M A R I A N U N I V E R S I T Y

Most colleges or universities aren’t nearly

technologies. Headlines focus on Artificial

at that level. So, there's a big focus there

Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning, Block-

on retention.”

chain, Big Data and one could be forgiven

Elsewhere, and also feeding into this

for feeling somewhat overwhelmed or worse,

retention focus, Stanley continuously

focusing on the solutions that don't have

monitors the technology provided to the

any real relevance to their own particular

advancement team as well as the fun-

challenges. Stanley is aware of this chal-

ctionality of the fundraising and the ability

lenge and points to a key example that is

to reach deeper into a fundraising network

currently a hot trend for the higher educa-

as well as admissions. Marian University

tion space. “We’re investigating keyless

has completely revamped the student

door entry into the residence halls. It

information system and recruiting system

could be a key differentiator for us. Now,

and as a result of this has seen record

there are a lot of new technologies out

enrollment for its first full-time freshman

there that allow you to take a phone, using

student class in 2020. Stanley attributes

Bluetooth, to scan your door to open it,”

a lot of this success directly to the invest-

he says. “Suddenly, students don't need a

ments that are being made in technology.

key anymore and I can use a phone to go

The technology space is over saturated

to the dining hall, Subway, or Starbucks as

with shiny new digital solutions that will

well. It's a great opportunity, but we need to

claim to fix any problem and solve any

perform the homework to ensure it provide

challenge and in turn, the conversations

the best return of our investments.”

become dictated by buzzwords and “sexy”

This is a challenge that has only been w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


exacerbated in recent times following the

that acts like it's going to produce bene-

COVID-19 pandemic. Stanley points to the

fit. Key to overcoming this has been the

shifting needs of business and how that

way in which the University works with

had created a flooding of the market with

its exte-rnal partners. One such partner

solutions that were almost pitted as a

is EDUCAUSE, a nonprofit association

silver bullet for many. He admits that yes,

in the United States whose mission is "to

some were, and are, right for the University,

advance higher education through the use

but what's important for him is to recognize

of information technology”.

and acknowledge the “imposter compa-

“We spend a lot of time with them and

nies”. These “imposter” companies were,

we have a group of 30 in Indiana made

as Stanley notes, just showing up making

up of colleges and universities. We sit on

it really difficult to find a real solution

a council together and we exchanging

that provides benefit versus something

ideas,” says Stanley. “We rely on some of



the bigger schools like Indiana University

corporate IT space, are the biggest and

and Purdue University for some of their

most important stakeholders for Marian

guidance and leadership. It’s about getting

University. Stanley and his teams can

out, communicating, understanding the

tell us that they make sure that they [the

marketplace and understanding the needs.�

students] are at the very heart of every

The work and the collaboration with

decision they make, but how do they go

EDUCAUSE allows Stanley and Marian

about actually doing that? After all, no two

to ask and answer the important ques-

students are the same and offering indi-

tions: will making a bigger investment

vidual experiences to each and every one

make sense? What will the return be?

is possible to some degree but it is a diffi-

And ultimately, how many students does

cult and often fruitless endeavour. Stanley

it either retain or bring into the univer-

knows this, but he also knows how to walk

sity? Students, much like customers in the

the walk and not simply talk it. “The very w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


first thing I did when I joined was create

Stanley and his teams took feedback from

a student survey that goes out twice a

them in a way that was more personal

year at the end of each semester, gaug-

than just relying on the surveys. “It was so

ing feedback on how their technology

rewarding,” he beams. “I was really looking

experience has been and what things they

forward to doing it this fall, but we couldn't

would like to see changed,” he says. “I then

quite do it with the social distancing that

meet with the different student govern-

we need to, but we'll certainly put that back

ment associations and that's my time to

into place next year.”

listen. Sure, I tell them where we are at with

In early 2020, the world was gripped by

certain initiatives but I'm there to listen.

the COVID-19 pandemic. With lockdowns,

Tell me what you want and what you need.

social distancing and isolation being

Tell me what's not working. Tell me what is

enforced all over the world, the education


sector faced a difficult challenge; how to

The results, for him personally, speak for

continue providing education services to

themselves. “It really is a great feedback

the students when they are not on campus

loop. The survey also leads right into our

and to do so in a way that does not jeopard-

IT strategic plan because of the feedback

ize their success. Marian University closed

that we get there on what we're doing well,

and the students were sent home. Rather

what we're not doing well or what we are

than be faced with a new challenge of

missing as far as a need, really then drives

online teaching, Stanley and his team had

a lot of that IT strategic plan.”

spent the last few years focusing on how

Being with the students proves critical

to use the technologies to deliver exactly

for Stanley and for the success of Marian.

that. “We had been doing a lot of work in

What is clear is that there is a culture of

our emergency response planning, which

bringing the students in, getting to know

included being able to teach remotely.

them and ensuring that the university is

And so, that pivot in the spring was almost

doing what the students need. A key exam-

a non-event for IT,” he says. “Now, there

ple of this can be seen in the Freshman

were some things, people needed differ-

Connect program. By visiting the residence

ent devices than they'd had before getting

halls and taking part in a root beer social,

the devices in March and April was almost

interacting with the students and showing

impossible. But that was really the only

them how to use different technologies,

large hurdle we encountered, which is



“ ...The biggest key to success is setting a path and making sure that you’re always looking ahead. Yes, you’re going to encounter deviations off that path, but you need to know where you’re going. If you don’t. Then you’re not going to get there. We simply cannot chase those shiny objects” — R AY S TA N L E Y, C I O, V P, M A R I A N U N I V E R S I T Y

w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t


really amazing.” The new demands that were required

still have to keep things moving, where there's still licensing, there's still equipment

of IT included temperature monitor-

that's aging, all of that,” says Stanley. “So, it

ing, capacity scanning and planning and

really threw an extra amount of work in. But

contact tracing, things that Stanley openly

we were able to kind of parallel the work

admits he knew little of only 12 months

streams and still make it back. As we speak

ago. The technology that's been required

today, we've successfully had students

to have a university open back up was a

back for about three weeks now.”

whole new experience for Stanley, but

At the time of writing, the future remains

there still remained an overarching IT

uncertain and there is no guarantee that

strategy that needed to be addressed. “I

those students will not be sent back home



in the near future although the immediate

and all of the yearly schedules and goals

future looks good. What we can be certain

are where they need to be. Looking to the

of is that Marian University has worked

future, the next 12 months and beyond,

extremely hard to ensure that it can still be

Stanley is keen to fully migrate into the

there for its students in their time of need.

cloud and to be able to continue to improve

There have undoubtedly been a number

the University's network offering. For him,

shifts in its IT strategic plan to cater

the biggest complaint of any student is

towards more mobility and to be able to

connectivity and so there will be constant

deliver that technology remotely and virtu-

work in improving that connectivity and

ally for teaching. But Stanley affirms that

improving the (already high) student satis-

the IT strategic plan has remained intact

faction rate.

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Working in the technology space is not easy. Combining that challenge with the challenges of serving a higher education facility and it becomes even more difficult. Stanley reflects on a piece of advice that has stuck with him throughout his career. "Don't steer a cruise ship, like a speed boat,” he laughs. “An old manager told me that and it’s stuck with me because it is easy to chase the shiny objects because they are shiny, new and promise great benefits. But you cannot shift a large group of 5,000+ people that quickly, it just doesn't work. The biggest key to success is setting a path and making sure that you’re always looking ahead. Yes, you’re going to encounter deviations off that path, but you need to know where you're going. If you don’t plan and set a path, then you're simply not going to accomplish your goals for the University.”

w w w. t h e i n t e r f a c e . n e t



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