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Interview with Tony Kerrison, Global Head of Technology Infrastructure Services at Barclays

Tony Kerrison

We spoke to Tony in June 2018.

Tony Kerrison is Head of Global Technology Infrastructure Services at Barclays Bank, responsible for Technology Infrastructure across the Barclays business portfolio including Barclays UK and Barclays International which includes Retail Banking, Investment Banking, and Cards.

Tony’s experience includes early adopter technology innovation and organizational change in the United States, Europe and Asia. Prior to joining Barclays, Tony held C-level leadership positions in a range of global banks including Bank of America Merrill Lynch, ING, Merrill Lynch, Credit Suisse First Boston and Deutsche Bank. 

 

Hi Tony, thank you for taking the time to talk to us today. What do you see as the main challenges for Heads of Infrastructure like yourself in the next 3-5 years? 

For me, it’s understanding that we are in an era of rapid and continuous change. Keeping up is not good enough, we need to remain at the forefront. At Barclays, we have a strong history of innovation and a key challenge for me is making sure we continue in that vein, creating a strong foundation for agility, disruption and growth to meet Barclays’ ambitions. As an organisation, we also have an ever-increasing amount of information at our disposal, I therefore think that within infrastructure we need to be more analytical and aware of how we can best utilise and harness that information to our advantage. 

How do you think global infrastructure has evolved since the 2008 crisis? 

Infrastructure has evolved to meet the increasing demands of accessibility, speed and automation. Our reliance on installing, configuring and connecting physical devices has been surpassed by providing what applications need: security and scale, in a fully automated way, enabling us to respond to our customers’ needs faster.

Changes to our infrastructure and technology have also enabled our workforce to operate flexibly, removing the limits previously set by location, timezone, or environment. By creating the right infrastructure, we can work from any location, using tools to help us collaborate more effectively, and as a result, we’re seeing a more diverse workplace. 

What is your view on whether Cloud will act as a transformation lever for global infrastructure? 

In preparation for this, we’ve been working on comprehensive plans to transition from legacy systems to Cloud ways of working. With an organisation the size of ours, our people and processes must change and adapt, which takes time and therefore can limit how effectively we take advantage of cloud adoption.

Within infrastructure, we are supporting the business to de ne roadmaps and delivery components to unlock the potential of Cloud. We are currently focusing on three key strategic platforms offering both on and off premise solutions. Our automation and efficiency work is concentrated in these areas, which will help us to divest of legacy infrastructure. 

As a global Head of Infrastructure, what would you say to a graduate who was looking to pursue a career in Infrastructure in banking? 

Don’t underestimate how reliant modern day banking is on infrastructure and the plethora of systems, processes, hardware/software applications that comes with that! Whether a Service Manager, Messaging Engineer or Major Incident Manager you could have a fulfilling career as a technical expert, building, assessing and integrating complex systems. 

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