Having worked as a Management Consultant at IBM, Head of Global IT Cost Management at Lloyds Banking Group, CIO at Aldermore Bank, held iNED roles in two international Banks and in many more roles, Paul Johnson, COO and CIO, has truly gained a wealth of IT and financial experience.
Prior to beginning his journey with PIB Group in 2018, Johnson claims that a conversation with Brendan McManus (Group CEO) convinced him that the company was an exciting prospect he had to get involved with. “I was consulting for a new startup blockchain bank at the time,” he recalls. “But, after speaking to Brendan and listening to PIB Group’s story, I became genuinely excited about the company and felt a real ‘click’ with the executive vision.” Bringing a diverse range of skills accrued in tech firms, financial institutions and even the Royal Navy, Johnson says that knowing many aspects of the sector has allowed him to adopt the agile, flexible work ethic required in such a fast-moving company. “My experience has been very varied, including the acquisitions of organisations, international growth and then suddenly having to switch to cost optimisation. That teaches you a lot in terms of how to lead in the most optimal and professional way for your employees.”
In fact, when asked to describe the workplace culture at PIB Group, Johnson easily summarises it as ‘engaged’ and ‘collaborative’. “One of the things I enjoy most about PIB Group is the culture,” he adds. “The COVID-19 period has emphasised even more that our employees are the engine of the company.” Maintaining a corporate yet entrepreneurial spirit wherein everyone feels that they can contribute underpins PIB Group’s need to stay nimble, particularly as technology continues to disrupt the traditional norms of insurance.
The developing application of smart automation is one aspect which particularly interests Johnson: “I'm always interested in how we can provide a much better service to our customers, and artificial intelligence (AI), robotic process automation (RPA) and bots can provide that. I want the company to ensure that our staff can focus on servicing our customers rather than simply on processes.” That AI-powered analytics will be at the forefront of the industry in the near future is beyond doubt for him: with AI algorithms capable of building highly accurate customer data profiles and sophisticated understanding of the market, insurers will be able to provide better advice and suggest the best products for their customers’ needs. “I'm currently building a new data set that we can use to provide better customer service, propositions and advice to our growing customer base,” Johnson adds.
“Fairness, patience, and clear decision-making are crucial both on the football pitch and in procurement.”