What are the kinds of IT skills Swiss Re is looking to bring in to the enterprise?
Swiss Re is currently hiring data scientists into the Information technology unit. The data scientists are expected to have strong computer science, math and statistics and machine learning skills. Our data scientists often have additional expertise with a specific technology or area of research which is relevant to our business. We recognize the need to integrate our data scientists with the business while also ensuring that they have the optimal environment which allow them to easily explore new technology and learn from their peers.
What are the business needs these skills serve?
Swiss Re has always been a data rich company. But like other insurance and reinsurance companies we have not always leveraged the data to the full extent. Our data scientists are working with the various Swiss Re business units to understand what problems they are trying to solve and then we are growing analytic capabilities and designing analytics solutions accordingly. We are also engaging with clients on certain topics, such as predictive analytics, where we have strong expertise.
What steps is Swiss Re taking to acquire those skills?
We've gone about trying to attract talented data scientists a couple different ways, including most recently hosting hackathon events in New York and Bangalore. These events successfully increased the awareness in the tech community that Swiss Re is a company that invests in cutting edge technology and has complex, interesting problems to solve. We have also been leveraging social media platforms, and actively speaking at and recruiting from top universities.
What’s the balance between retraining existing staff and finding new recruits?
Retraining existing staff is a priority. We have been offering and encouraging job rotations which give existing employees the chance to acquire new skills and knowledge. We are also working in cross-functional teams to blend skills and knowledge where it makes sense. Existing employees also have the opportunity to learn about evolving technology trends in a series of planned innovation events. Such events are drawing a lot of excitement and participation rates are high.
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