Kris share his experience about working with UBS Tech team as compared to other tech jobs
Hi Kris, can you tell us about your career background?
Over the years, I‘ve had the opportunity to work across various industries, such as Technology, Automotive and Financial Services.
I started my career as a software developer but quickly realized that I enjoyed working with people, so moved into a project role. I was managing projects from an early stage and was soon leading a team of program and change managers. Nowadays, I am using my expertise and experience, and I’m motivated by mentoring and helping my team members to develop professionally.
What is your team like?
I lead the technology services program management office center of excellence (or ‘TS PMO CoE’, which isn’t much less of a mouthful!). The team covers programs like core infrastructure, networks, IT security, cloud and automation.
It’s based in Poland, but actually the full team spans across the world. Tech Services has around 180 employees globally, with 24 nationalities in 14 locations and 7 time zones.
Does being spread globally limit the team’s effectiveness?
We have top experts in each domain in different regions, and their location is not a constraint. We are truly one global team. The technology we have here allows us to all be connected no matter where we’re located.
What does a normal working day look like for you?
Every day is different. There are varying challenges across different locations, day to day. There is no golden formula that resolves each issue; I have realized that over the years. My approach in each case has to be different, patient, open minded … and ready for the unknown!
Collaboration is key. It's no accident that it is also one of our key values at UBS. This is one of the biggest reasons why I enjoy working for UBS and by saying that I hope I’m breaking this stereotype of being an IT expert in a bank.
What are the attributes you look for in potential new team members?
Basically, I look for a few things.
- We are in Technology, so the domain knowledge/experience must be present. But my team covers all areas of technology services, so I can always find a good match.
- Great communicators. Those able to work in a global team and retain focus on their clients and stakeholders.
- Super collaborators. Honest and able to challenge things they believe can be improved.
- People passionate about delivering change and leaving their comfort zone for new challenges.
In technology, it’s the people that really matter. We work closely with others and build long-lasting relationships that will allow and provide strong collaboration for our programs. We cannot underestimate representation of all above skills in both each team member and in a team as a "unit".
What’s unique about working here?
Technology has revolutionized financial services and UBS is at the leading edge of its global application. For me, the key element is the people. You can copy and replicate what other competitors may be doing in your industry. However, you cannot recreate a passionate workforce and culture. As I mentioned in the previous question: this is the secret.
If you are ambitious, hardworking and self-driven, then you can thrive here. I regularly see my team members grow, develop and receive internal promotions.
Can you give us an interesting fact about your current projects?
UBS encourages a creative and self-driven environment, where the teams themselves know best. So there is a lot of freedom in how the projects are run. Depending on the nature of the initiative, we apply all available project management best practices, such as waterfall/iterative, agile/scrum and Kanban.