Electronic Chat: Tricia Blair
Robert Regis Hyle | June 05, 2014
The Electronic Chat is a regular feature of ITA Pro magazine and ITApro.org. We send a series of questions to an insurance IT leader looking for thought-provoking responses on important issues facing the insurance industry.
This issue we chat with Tricia S. Blair, senior vice president, chief digital officer and head of enterprise IT services for Lincoln Financial Group and a member of the advisory board for the Insurance Technology Association. She is responsible for the digital strategy, technology and implementation for the corporation, its core life insurance, annuities, retirement plans, and group benefits businesses, and both the wholesale and retail distribution organizations.
In addition to leading Lincoln Financials web, mobile, and social media strategies, Blair is also responsible for enterprise architecture, business architecture, corporate enterprise systems and portal management, as well as the IT project management office and quality assurance center initiatives.
Blair has more than 25 years of marketing, technology, and digital experience, with a focus on strategic business growth, multi-channel marketing, integration of large-scale business and technology platforms, and high-value business transformations.
Prior to joining Lincoln Financial, Blair was senior vice president for the Retail Portfolio Marketing group of JPMorgan Chase & Co. Her previous experience also includes leadership roles with MasterCard International and Mondial Assistance, an Allianz Group company. A veteran of the dot-com space, Blair has provided consulting services to companies including Priceline, TJX Companies, Sears Canada, Motorola, Gillette, and Starbucks.
A graduate of San Francisco State University, Blair also has a degree in design from the Art Institute of Philadelphia. She resides in Dolington Village, Pa. She also teaches website development at various local community colleges and is an active volunteer with the New Jersey Adult Literacy Program.
What is the biggest leadership challenge you face in IT and how are you dealing with it?
BLAIR: Right now, I’d say our biggest challenge involves talent recruitment and retention. Our leadership team is very focused on this, and we’re piloting new ways to draw talent. We have created an internship program based on our relationships with universities. We’re also using a targeted approached to this issue, creating workgroups and teams among our existing employees to help them feel more connected to what’s going on in our business.
Which technologies do you feel are under-used in the insurance industry today?
BLAIR: At this point, I think data management and data visualization tools are the most under-used tools/technology in the industry today.
What steps is your company taking to attract and prepare young IT workers for a career in insurance IT?
BLAIR: This goes back to our recruitment and retention efforts. We’ve developed relationships with universities to help attract talent through internships, and we’ve also created programs to help prepare employees to tackle the challenges of IT in our business. We’ve created a Leadership Preparation Program to educate younger workers on various aspects of our business and our industry—not just IT—so they get a more holistic picture of what we do and how IT supports and drives the business.
Are you satisfied with the connection between the business side and IT? If not, what steps are being taken to improve this?
BLAIR: It’s difficult to be satisfied. I think there’s always something you can do to improve the connection between IT and your business partners. We’re looking at business engagement approaches and measuring ourselves and our capabilities. The significant measurement there is how we’re driving business value, and then we’ll take that analysis and figure out what we can do to improve it.
What is your greatest worry when you put your head on a pillow at night?
BLAIR: Not moving fast enough to deal with the disruption that mobile technology has on our business—and all business—and what we’re doing to accommodate and integrate mobile. I question how we’re preparing IT to deal with business technology, because today’s model is “Bring Your Own Device,” and we have to change what IT does in a legacy systems environment.
- Electronic Chat with Jeroen Morrenhof
- Legacy Systems Are Dead. Really? Don't Count On It.
- Now Accepting Nominations for the 2019 ITA Bridge Awards
- It's time to register for ITA LIVE!
- Registration is Now Open for ITA LIVE 2019!
- What to Expect from a Digital Experience Platform Implementation
- ITA Pro Magazine September Edition is Now Available
- It's National IT Professionals Day
- Save the Date for ITA-LIVE 2019
- OneShield Software and UrbanStat Work Together to Improve Real-Time Analytics and Risk Decision-Making
- ITA LIVE 2019 - SAVE THE DATE!
- Insurance Technology Association Announces New Editor-in-Chief
- August 2018 Edition ITA Pro Magazine is Now Available
- Enterprise Architecture in an Agile World
- Top 10 Tips for Securing Your Mobile Devices and Sensitive Client Data
- Industry Insight: 4 Global Insurance Trends in Digital, Data, Content Services and Security
- Diving Deeper into Prioritizing Your Strategic Digital investments
- Why Content Rules
- How Mass Personalization Will Open the Small Business Benefits Market
- At Year End 2017, Will Your Organization Be Protected from Cyber Risks?
- Do Insurance Bots Dream of Mitigating Risk?
- Conditioned to Respond
- Managing & Mobilizing Insurance Data in a Connected World
- Race to the Finish Line
- New Tools, New Opportunities in Claims
- ITA LIVE: Reaching Insurance Industry Crossroads
- Advice to Insurance IT Leaders: Keep Your Eye on the Ball
- New Date, Venue for ITA LIVE 2017
- Guidewire Makes Major Push to Small and Midtier Market by Acquiring ISCS
- Insurance Disruption is Happening Right Now
- Insurity Adds Strategic Investment Partner, General Atlantic
- Beyond Transformation: The Convergence of Finance, Risk, and Actuarial Functions
- The Rapid Evolution of Consumer Protection Regulation
- Talent Hunt: Finding, Attracting, Retaining Top People
- Insurers Flexing Their Distribution Models
- Technology Driving Disruption in Insurance
- Fear of ‘Next Bubble’ Challenges Life, Annuity Carriers
- Technology Allows Commercial Lines Insurers to Stand Out
- Single Sign-on Viewed as Biggest Tech Challenge for Agencies
- ISCS Observes 20th Anniversary; Scurto Predicts Major Changes Ahead
- Policyholders and Their First Impressions
- Progressive Making Progress on the UBI Front
- High and Dry: Insurers Search for Disaster Recovery Plans
- Insurers Sign The (Un)Dotted Line
- Reflections of a Retired Insurance CIO
- Mobile Device Management Just One Answer to BYOD Issue
- Lessons from GEICO and Progressive on Winning the Critical Buying Stage
- You Are a Target for a Cyber Attack
- Web-based Systems are the Next Evolution in Claims Technology
- Gaining a “Wow” Experience from Web Users
- Time to Shift from Business/IT Alignment to Business/IT Alliance
- Healthcare Insurers Changing to Consumer Model
- Organization is the Key for Selecting Software Vendors
- Analysts Expound on the Needs of the Mid-tier Insurance Market
- Finding the Cure for Obamacare’s Website
- New Software Solutions Benefit Insurers on the Inside and Outside
- Products, Market Impede Investment in Systems for Life Insurers
- Combatting Cyber Threats: Predict, Prevent, Persist
- The Future of Telematics Heads Beyond Insurance
- The Shame in Cyber Security Lapses
- Building Policy Administration Systems for the Future
- Insurers Look Into The Eyes of Their Policyholders
- It’s a New Dawn for the ITA
INSURANCE IT NEWS
- Electronic Chat with Jeroen Morrenhof
- 2019 Global Insurance Accelerator Cohort Reflects Evolution of InsurTech
- Nearly 50% of US Insurers Are Enhancing Security Capabilities Across the Board, Says Novarica
- Xchange Benefits Acquires the Assets of J. Allan Hall & Associates, Inc.
- HazardHub Celebrates 2018
- Slice Launch Studio
- Crawford Technologies Experiences its Strongest Year of Sales and Growth
- InsureTech Company Accurence Secures Fourth Patent
The Email Chat is a regular feature of the ITA Pro magazine and website. We send a series of questions to an insurance IT leader in search of thought-provoking responses on important issues facing the insurance industry.
ITA LIVE 2019
The tide is up! It's time to register for ITA LIVE 2019, our annual educational and networking conference! Our theme is "The InsurTech Revolution: Cutting Through the Hype." and we'll be bringing in a torrent of industry thought leaders, amazing insight and wonderful perspectives on the world of insurtech and its impact on the insurance landscape.
ITA LIVE 2019 will present real-life examples of true startup technologies that are helping insurers gain real advantage -- and a competitive edge -- in the marketplace. We’ll highlight the more successful InsurTech partnerships, while offering case studies that demonstrate exciting innovation and cutting-edge techniques impacting all aspects of the insurance ecosystem.
Ride the wave to LIVE 2019. Sign up today! We look forward to seeing you in May, 2019!
BLOGS AND COLUMNS
You have surely heard it said that small businesses are the growth engine for America. Today, the phrase has a special ring to it for benefits... READ MORE
With stagnant growth and lingering low interest rates, the life insurance industry faces a challenging future... READ MORE
Finding insurance carriers willing to write commercial lines risks has always been a challenge for producers... READ MORE
As Guidewire Software prepares for the start of Connections, its 11th annual user conference that begins on Nov. 2, Brian Desmond, chief marketing... READ MORE