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Nationwide Chief Operating Officer Tony Prestedge adds technology expertise to advise IT strategy board

Edward Qualtrough | Oct. 27, 2016
Nationwide COO adds it is important to have a technology leader on the executive leadership team

External expertise

Discussing the new panel advising the Nationwide Board and IT Strategy Committee, Lenson said: "For some time the board of Nationwide has been keen to ensure we have world class strength in IT development, resilience and innovation.

"The engagement of these external experts will provide additional insight and challenge to ensure we effectively meet the opportunities of a digital age across our technology, innovation and IT resilience investment. We are looking forward to welcoming the new experts to the team and working to continue to deliver market leading innovations which have a real world benefit to our members."

Prestedge said that Nationwide had already had its first meeting of the new Board IT Strategy and Resilience Committee and described the contributions of the new experts as "completely invaluable".

Prestedge said: "As millions of our members embrace the benefits of digital innovations we recognised the need to continue to ensure we have the right talent and leadership in place to meet the rapidly changing challenges and opportunities new technology presents. Bringing external expertise to support the Board IT Committee allows Nationwide to benefit from decades of combined experience at the most senior level, complementing our in-house experts, as we continue our ambitious innovation, technology and IT resilience investment.

"We worked really hard to bring in people who would challenge us and provide insight," added the COO, who was impressed how quickly the five of them had brought a new perspective to Nationwide that is taking the organisation's thinking forward.

Nationwide innovation

Having taken the mutual on a multi-billion-pound transformation plan which has seen the building society modernise its core banking systems and infrastructure, Prestedge is excited by the next wave of innovations in the sector.

The COO said that he was seeking inspiration from the tech sector and what organisations like IBM were doing with its Watson supercomputer, as well as the Big Data players, Amazon and credit card businesses. Prestedge was also looking at digital marketing organisations and how they can personalise content, how telcos had completely reinvented their business models to become content providers, as well as innovation and automation in government, open APIs, cognitive learning and deep tech which Nationwide is investigating with its Pivotus innovation lab in Silicon Valley.


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