Mark Bramwell is Head of IT at the Wellcome Trust, the world's second largest charity and medical research funder, with Bramwell recently overseeing a significant technological transformation at the organisation based only a stone's throw from CIO UK headquarters on the Euston Road in London.
Head of IT
When did you start your current role?
What is your reporting line?
COO (Set to change to CFO)
Do you meet with and discuss business strategy with the CEO every week?
Are you a member of the board of directors?
What other executive boards do you sit on?
Deputy Chairman of Corporate IT Forum, Non Exec Board Member of Circle Support
Does your organisation have a CDO?
What different responsibilities does the CDO have?
We do not have a CDO but have a Head of Digital Development. Their responsibilities are in the development, support, maintenance, user experience and content management of the Wellcome Trusts websites and online magazine.
What non-technology responsibilities do you have in the organisation?
Member of the Wellcome Trust Senior Leadership Team (Top 35 leaders and managers). Member of Operations Management Team. Member of Digital Programme Board. Championing, leading. delivering and supporitng organisational strategy and change. Fostering and driving innovation and continuous improvement.
How many employees does your organisation have?
650 staff plus 200 contractors and tenants.
Does your organisation carry out significant trade in the EU?
What number of users does your department supply services to?
850 on-site staff, contractors and tenants, 3,000 external grant applicants, 500,000 members of the public
How do you ensure that you have a good understanding of your business and how your customers use your business's products?
As the world's 2nd largest charity and funder of medical research (c£700m per annum) we do not really have a product. The product is grant funding. However to ensure I have a good understanding of the business and we fund the brightest minds and greatest innovation.
I Meet monthly 1:1 with each member of the Executive Board (CEO quarterly).
Meet and talk with external professors, researchers, grant giving organisations and NFP organisations
To support, change and make better you need to meet, listen and understabd peoples challenges and frustrations.
Wellcome Trust technology strategy and agenda
Is your organisation being disrupted by the internet, mobility or technology oriented start-ups?
Are you empowered by your organisation to disrupt from the inside?
Describe a disruptive measure you’ve led or played a major part in?
We have embraced, delivered and implemented CYOD/BYOD and the use of open source web technologies such as Drupal.
We have embraced mobility with 60% of the Wellcome Trust staff having laptops and/or iPads with 4G connectivity to Wellcome Trust applications.
We were early adopters (2009) of cloud and SaaS technologies and Virtualisation (2009) with 97% of the Wellcome Trust's infrastrcuture now virtualaised (VMware 5.5, on HP Gen 8 Blade Server).
What major transformation project has been recently completed, or is underway at your organisation?
Over the past 12-18 months the Wellcome Trust's IT Department has delivered:
Replaced and upgraded vore, edge and wirless network (Cisco to HP)
Upgraded and relocated our DR to Hinxton
Replaced and upgraded 1.5Pb of storage (Oracle Pillar to Dell)
Replaced and upgraded PCs and laptops (Dell)
Upgraded Windows7 and Exchange 2010
Implemented BYOD/CYOD (iPhone 5s, iPhone6, Windows8 Lumia 925)
Outsourced Infrastructure Support and Maintenance (Selection Services to HP)
As well as delivering 31 Projects and 82 Small Work Requests, 62 New Contracts, 52 Contract Renewals, 356 Change Control Board Changes.
In doing this the Wellcome Trust's IT Team have delivered Service Availability of 99.2% and Software Compliance of 98%.
Therefore the Wellcome Trust's IT Team is constantly, every day progressing change, improvement and transformation to support our colleagues better.
This year the major focus is the delivery of major new Grant Application (to support the £700m of grant funding ecah year), Investments (to support the £17.6bn investment portfolio) and web (corporate website and intranet) systems. We embrace, champion and deliver change.
What impact will the above transformation have on your organisation?
Enhance, improve and embrace staff mobility, accessibilty, effectiveness and choice.
Provided a blended IT Strategy and Service that recignises and supports the diverse needs and requirements of different Divisions/Departments (not one size fits all).
To do this with a cost neutal IT Headcount and IT Operational Budget.
How has your leadership style contributed to the outcomes of the transformation project?
To visible lead for the front.
To champion, promote, influence and implement change and provide re-assurance.
To supprt and promote the benefits of change.
To provide technology thought leadership in trying to be ahead of the game (not always possible with today's pace of change).
What key technologies do you consider enable transformation?
Mobile, Mobile Applications, Mobilty, Web, Cloud, SAAS, Remote Access, Data/Business Intelligence, Network Connectivity and Bandwidth.
The ability to provide single device solutions that transcend social and work life.
Are you increasing the number of cloud applications or infrastructure in use at your organisation?
What is your information and data analytics vision for the organisation?
To provide on-site and remote any device, anywhere access to Business Intelligence and Analytics data via pre-published (push) data and self service (pull) data, and to provide this using a range of display technologies e.g. tabular, graphical, 3D/4D, geographic (Bing Mappting), and so on - the most appropriate and relevant of choice for the individual.
How is mobile and social networking impacting operations and customer experience?
Everybody the The Wellcome Trust interacts with is a customer. However its 'customers' are primarily professors, researcher, scientists and the members of the public who visit the Wellcome Collection (c500,000 per annum).
With this we have embraced and delivered moble working (laptops, iPads and smartphones), enhanced operations through paperless committees and increased engagement through Facebook, Twitter and the Wellcome Trust blog.
Describe your strategic vision towards shadow IT and BYOD. How do you influence and engage executives and employees around choice?
We have embraced and delivered BYOD/CYOD.
We also embrace and work closely with ShadowIT, as were we not to it would happen anyway. In relation to IT influence and choice we have very established governance to raise, discuss and review IT options re: choice e.g. Staff Forum, Information Technology Executive, Executibe Board as well as a team of IT Account Managers who are located and embedded within the business on a day to day basis.
What strategic technology deals have been struck and with whom?
HP - Infratructure Support and Maintenance and on-site IT Service Desk resourcing.
Dell - Storage, Desktop, Laptop and Windows 7 support.
Jigsaw24 - On-site Apple Desktop, Laptop and Software support
Phoenix Software - Software compliance, management and Microsoft support
O2 - Mobililty, MDM and Device Management
CCTechnology - New off the shelf Grant Application Management system
Genisys Consulting - On-site and Off-Shore Microsoft (.Net, SQL) Development, Support and Maintenance
Who are your main suppliers?
HP, Dell, O2, Phoenix Software, Jigsaw24, Genisys Consulting, CCTechnology
Wellcome Trust IT security and budget
Has your organisation detected a cyber intrusion in the last 12 months?
Has cyber-security risen up your management agenda?
Does your organisation understand the potential cyber-security threats it faces?
Has this led to an increase in your security budget?
What is the IT budget?
£150,000 (previously £0)
How much is the IT operational spend compared to the revenue as a percentage?
What is the strategic aim of the CIO and IT operations for the next financial year?
From our current IT Strategy our aim and objective is to "through technology engage, enable and add value to our colleagues, make a positive impact and have fun".
Are you finding it difficult to recruit the talent you need to drive transformation?
Has recruitment and retention risen up your agenda as a CIO?
Are you looking for recruits in the EU to fill the skills shortage you have?
Does your IT organisation operate an apprenticeship scheme
Wellcome Trust technology department
How would you describe your leadership style?
Visible, Open, Honest, Passionate, Collaborative (Direct when needed), Results Driven and Engaging.
A Team Player that recognises and values the cnntribution of the team, its partners and customers..
Explain how you’ve supported and developed your senior leadership team to support your overall objectives and vision?
By fully involving them (and the wider IT Team) in the creation, develooment and drafting of the IT Strategy (they can now relate to it and own it).
By supporting the internal and external proferssional development of the team (leadership courses, conferences, professional qualifications, external board appointments etc).
By empowering them (with accountabioity) to do their jobs, innovate and improve the team, department, organisation.
By fostering a culture of customer sercie, delivery, high performance, team work, team identity, innovation and challenge.
How many employees are in your IT team?
57 (43 FTE + 1 apprentice + 1 graduate + 7 On-Site Outsourced + 5 Fixed Term Contractors)
What is the split between in-house/outsourced staff?
45:12 = 21%
Does your team include key skilled workers from the EU?