Job title: Data Architect
Location: Potters Bar
Job type: Permanent
Who we are
Canada Life UK looks after the retirement, investment and protection needs of individuals, families and companies. We help to build better futures for our customers, our intermediaries and our employees by operating as a modern, agile and welcoming organisation.
Part of our parent company Great-West Lifeco, Canada Life UK has operated in the United Kingdom since 1903. We have hundreds of respected and supported employees committed to doing the right thing for our customers and colleagues.
Canada Life UK is transforming to create a more customer-focused business by providing our customers with expertise on financial and tax planning, offering home finance and annuities propositions, and providing collective fund solutions to third party customers.
What we’re building
We now need a Data Architect to support the transformation and the future growth of the business within the IT function, so it can simplify our IT architecture by removing our legacy systems and investing in modernised, lower-cost technology systems, and deliver a digital platform that provides a single view of our customers.
A senior data architect designs and delivers the IT technical vision for the organisation as set by the Head Of Architecture.
Data architects design data models and metadata systems and help Line of Business Lead Architects to interpret business needs
Responsible for providing oversight and advice to other Architects who are undertaking the design of data models and support the management of data dictionaries, and will ensure respective teams are working to the standards set for the organisation by the chief data architect
Work with Solution Architects to make sure that organisation’s systems are designed in accordance with the appropriate data architecture
What you’ll do
To understand technology needs and assess and support these needs.
•Works with Business Analysts, Architects, Senior IT and Business Managers to gain an understanding of information technology needs. This involves understanding the business’s strategy and existing solutions and proposing solutions to meet that strategy.
•Draws on expertise from specialists such as Subject matter expertise within the development teams, Technology Domain architects, project delivery resources, external consultants evaluate data and makes technology decisions.
•Identifies opportunities to enable business change through the application of technology
•Assesses the architectural impact and implications, of business or technology changes that are being contemplated
•Consults on the feasibility of, and probable technology directions for future initiatives.
•Supports the annual budget process by estimating technology and project delivery costs and resource effort.
Defines reviews and maintains architectures
•Defines project architectures to give direction to the design of the solution, and the choice and implementation of systems.
•Reviews project architectures for projects delivering within their business arear and champions the Architecture being presented at CLUK TDA or any other governing body
•Ensures architectural compliance to development, security or Infrastructure standards across their Business Area
◦Either adheres to portfolio, local site, and enterprise architectures
◦Or proposes and obtains variances from these architectures as required
•Works with the Procurement function and suppliers to obtain services, and co-ordinate and monitor their delivery
•Works with the CLUK Architecture Practices to provide input into Business or enterprise architecture
◦Defines and maintains Solution architecture and Roadmap for the business area
◦Reviews project architecture proposals, Champions their submission to CLUK TDA
◦Prepares and supports architectural variance requests through the Canada Life UK Architectural Board and the ISO Exception process. Works with the support team to maintain the exceptions for their business area.
Acts as the focal point for Architecture or development issues throughout all phases of projects. To ensure that all significant technology and design issues are resolved effectively.
•Remains informed about all significant technical aspects, activities, and associated business and technical impacts of their projects
•Takes direct ownership of the most significant technology and design issues
•Mentors others, as required, through the ownership and resolution of lesser issues while remaining informed
•Negotiates with impacted groups such as other IT Senior Management, Senior Business Managers other project teams and IT support teams.
•Ensures that stakeholder expectations are managed.
•Works with BC and IT Support in the resolution of very complex operational issues.
Leads the definition of Information Technology Strategies and solutions, To create and implement technical solutions that meet client’s needs.
•Achieves project objectives within the framework of the business strategies.
•Creates the vision that guides the creation of the solution from inception through delivery
•Plans, walks-through, and leads work packages as appropriate to the initiative.
•Provides leadership in the development of the physical components of the application model.
•Is responsible for the technical model.
•Ensures that all aspects of the solution (architecture deliverable) if it aligns to technology roadmaps before being presented to CLUK TDA.
•Decides on assessment of new technology coming into the company through.
Ensures quality designs and implementations, To ensure that designs meet operational requirements and quality standards.
•Works with Business Analysts and other project resources to ensure that physical designs are consistent with logical designs and requirements
•Works with project team members to ensure implemented systems are consistent with physical designs
•Ensures that operational requirements, based on the engineering of systems considerations (reliability, availability, adaptability, manageability, maintainability, performance and security), are met to the extent required by the current and projected business need
•Ensures system usability is considered, both from a human factors point of view and as it impacts systems engineering
•Fine tunes models and designs to account for technical realities that are revealed during implementation
•Participates in design and code walkthroughs
•Supports the transition to production
•Works with test team to ensure that the engineered characteristics of systems are validated
Provides leadership within the Business Change and IT Division. To ensure IT process meet best practices and standards.
•Champions the use of IT processes, best practices and standards
•Where needed, identifies and supports the correction or enhancement of existing IT processes, best practices or standards
•Seeks out and promotes opportunities for creating new I.S. processes, best practices or standards
•Provides support and direction for other Architects
•Contributes to the development and selection of systems architecture tools, techniques, and standards used across the CLUK Architecture practice
•Actively engages in maintaining and developing architectural practices within the delivery organisation
To ensure technology solutions are aligned across Canada Life UK and technology dependencies between projects are understood.
•Partners with delivery teams and project sponsors to ensure projects delivered to the agreed quality.
•Provides input to the creation of the project management deliverables across the business domain, including project charter, risk assessment, project schedule, and work breakdown statement
•Provides mentorship and coaching to other architects
•Provides direction to project team members and practitioner architects across the Business Domain.
•Shares overall responsibility for all aspects of all project’s activities and deliverables
•Represents the technologies to others, including sponsors, business partners, support groups and peers.
•Supports overall planning for the Business Domain as part of the account leadership team
•Works with procurement and vendors to co-ordinate the selection and implementation of products, if applicable
Who you are
•Is able to communicate effectively across organisational, technical and political boundaries, understanding the context. Makes complex and technical information and language simple and accessible for non-technical audiences. Is able to advocate and communicate what a team does to create trust and authenticity, and can respond to challenge.
•Produces data models and understands where to use different types of data models. Understands different tools and is able to compare between different data models. Able to reverse engineer a data model from a live system. Understands industry recognised data modelling patterns and standards.
•Develops and sets data standards for an organisation. Communicates the business benefit of data standards, championing and governing those standards across the organisation.
•Understands a variety of metadata management tools. Designs and maintains the appropriate metadata repositories to enable the organisation to understand their data assets.
•Works with business and technology stakeholders to translate business problems into data designs. Creates optimal designs through iterative processes, aligning user needs with organisational objectives and system requirements.
•Translates data into valuable insights that inform decisions. Involves teams in analytics and synthesis to increase consensus and challenge assumptions. Identifies and utilises the most appropriate analytical techniques. Has an understanding of analytical tools and is numerate. Is aware of and keeps up to date with advances in digital analytics tools and data manipulation products. Collects, collates, cleanses, synthesises and interprets data to derive meaningful and actionable insights.
•Uses the most appropriate medium to visualise data to tell compelling and actionable stories relevant for business goals. Presents, communicates and disseminates data appropriately and with high impact.
•Understands data governance and how it works in relation to other organisational governance structures. Participates in or delivers the assurance of a service.
•Recognises and exploits business opportunities to ensure more efficient and effective performance of organisations. Explores new ways of conducting business and organisational processes.
•Logs, analyses and manages problems in order to identify and implement the appropriate solution. Ensures that the problem is fixed.
•Has an overall perspective on business issues, events and activities, and an understanding of their wider implications and long-term impact. This could include determining patterns, standards, policies, roadmaps and vision statements. Focuses on outcomes rather than solutions and activities.
•Educated to degree level or equivalent experience in I.T.
•TOGAF or BCS Certification (Desirable)
What you’ll like about working here
As a Canada Life UK colleague, you’ll receive a competitive salary and comprehensive reward package including income protection, private medical insurance and life assurance, along with a generous pension and bonus scheme. You’ll also receive the support you need with your personal and professional development.
Our focus is to have an engaged, committed and motivated work force, operating in a high performing and collaborative culture. We want to create an organisation that offers opportunities for all our people to develop their skills and talent, and build rewarding careers with us.
Diversity and inclusion
Canada Life is committed to a diverse and inclusive workplace. Our role as an employer of choice is to provide the right environment for talented people to do their best work, by respecting, understanding and valuing individual differences.