Intelligent CIO Europe Issue 15 - Page 59

PROFILE L ibenson’s role as Global CIO for data giant Experian over the past four years has involved managing the company’s global infrastructure footprint so that all systems serve the company’s employees. Libenson and his team are also responsible for information security, as well as the architectural standards by which the company builds its products inside the organisation. Libenson works to ensure Experian has a consistent approach to how it builds technology so that its customers have a consistent experience when they interfact with the company’s various product offering. Here he offers an insight into the daily challenges and highlights he encounters within his role: Challenges faced as a CIO When I first joined Experian, the company had a somewhat decentralised approach to technology so what I often say is that we’d never met a database we didn’t like, we’d never met a programming language we didn’t like, we’d never met a piece of hardware we didn’t like. You name it, we had it. That worked very well for the company because there was a lot of accountability down to the business unit level. But the larger you get, the more difficult it is to maintain that type of approach because you lose a lot of synergies by not having common platforms and a common approach. So, one of the biggest challenges was moving everybody onto a common set of technology platforms around the globe so we would have better capabilities to reuse technology and better capabilities to leverage the human capital across the company. The biggest challenge was deciding on a common approach for how we’re going to do things technically across the enterprise. Discussing management style I have a philosophy of trying to hire the smartest people I possibly can. I find that the better the people you hire, the more they do. If I had a choice between hiring one world-class best-of-breed top of the line developer, versus three middle of the road developers, that one high performer will exceed expectations every time. I have a very open-door policy – I believe great ideas come from all parts of an organisation, not just the leadership team. I always try to create a forum for the exchange of ideas. I wouldn’t ask anybody to do something on my team that I wouldn’t personally do myself and that’s served me well. Hiring really qualified people generally always gets good results. On the biggest cyberthreats currently facing organisations in Europe For us, there’s a number of forces in the UK and in Europe in particular that have IF I HAD A CHOICE BETWEEN HIRING ONE WORLD- CLASS BEST- OF-BREED TOP OF THE LINE DEVELOPER, VERSUS THREE MIDDLE OF THE ROAD DEVELOPERS, THAT ONE HIGH PERFORMER WILL EXCEED EXPECTATIONS EVERY TIME. INTELLIGENTCIO 59