Siobhan, SVP for TEMS, talks about how we have adapted to a new way of working at Finastra
I’m Siobhan Byron and I’ve been with Finastra for two years as the the SVP and Head of TEMS (Technology Enabled Managed Services). Among the businesses I manage is Filogix, our mortgage technology solutions and Cheques. Yes, my team prints cheques. I can say we print money, literally!
Life is Finastra is looking a little bit different at the moment, with no travel and a lot more time at home, I’ve had to adapt to these changes. My actual role has not changed too much, but how I work has. I get up early, around 5:30, check my email, walk the dog, shower and coffee. With both my husband and I working from home, we’ve set up separate workspaces, turned a spare bedroom into an office and moved the furniture and set-up of the other space. Working from home all day, I discovered what I liked and didn’t - I prefer looking out of a window vs at a wall!
Since COVID-19 hit, Finastra has adapted incredibly well. We’ve changed our mindset from business as usual and focused on three key areas, our people, our customers and our businesses. We run a tightly managed, future-focused business that has our customers’ needs front and center. And it’s the people, whether my team or customers. that I love most about working here. There’s never a dull moment, which can have it challenges, especially when I’m trying to balance how I best support our people and business, whilst ensuring some there is also balance in my personal life.
We’re a global company and from the start, with my first meetings with Tom, Missy, Akber, Tracy and others, I’ve been impressed with everyone’s engagement, willingness to help, people focus and by how genuinely nice people are. I think that’s why the move to a virtual workplace during the pandemic happened so seamlessly, as we were already used to working with our colleagues in different offices and countries in this way, and now we work this way with our home office colleagues too.
I’ve had some incredible memories during my time at Finastra, from a trip to London that included a boat trip down the Thames, freezing at the off-site on day 3 of my time at Finastra. The Raptors winning the championship and some of the Canadians staying up to watch it at GSK (Global Sales Kickoff) in Gotenburg, attending an event at Buckingham Palace. Watching an epic ping pong game downtown Toronto after a team meeting. The welcome and support building the TEMS team in Bucharest. These memories have continued during these COVID-19 too, with opening a new site in Mississauga during the pandemic.
Another thing that stands out for me is being asked to host the first LGBTQ event here in Toronto shortly after I joined the company. They were looking for executive support and this led me to be the global LGBTQ+ & Friends sponsor. This year we hosted two weeks of Pride activities and a couple of events on coming out day. And someone actually came out on one of the calls. That was a huge moment - I felt extremely proud of the work the team has done, and of Finastra in promoting inclusion and an OPEN culture. We’re trying to create a safe environment where everyone belongs and that fact that our own employees shared their stories in our Pride webinar meant, to me, that we are moving the needle. People feel safe and that that they belong at Finastra. We changed our dress code last year to ‘Dress for yourself’. Another example of trusting our employees to dress appropriately but allowing them the flexibility to be themselves.
As we move through and beyond the pandemic, the careful balance of well-being, our customers and the business must continue. We’re embracing the learnings from the COVID-19 and trusting our people to work more independently, embracing digital first as we move to a much more empowered, progressive and inclusive way of working with our new OPENworking initiatives. Finastra is built for the future because we’re OPEN. Open to change. Change is the one constant and if this year has thought us anything it’s the need to change and adapt at speed. Openness is key to success. Finastra is OPEN.