UWS alumnus interview with IDG Connect

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University of the West of Scotland alumnus Graeme Thompson was recently interviewed as part of IDG Connect’s CIO Spotlight series, where IT leaders discuss their background and where they see the industry developing.

Alumnus Graeme Thompson

Graeme, who graduated from Paisley College of Technology (now UWS Paisley Campus) in 1994 with a BA in Business Economics, is the senior vice president and chief information officer of Informatica, responsible for the worldwide IT, information security and data governance functions. In his role he leads the ongoing enhancement of the company’s IT infrastructure and applications in support of the growth and transformation of the company.

A tech industry veteran with more than two decades of experience as a senior IT manager, prior to joining Informatica in 2016, Mr Thompson was vice president of Oracle’s end user services, from October 2013, where he led a team of some 400 workers in more than 50 countries with responsibility over all internal enterprise IT services.

Prior to that, he was Oracle’s vice president of service design, for nearly three years starting in January 2011, and also oversaw business relationship management IT, from June 2008.

Beyond Oracle, he has held senior IT posts at BEA Systems Inc. and Riverstone Networks Inc.

An absolutely essential piece of advice I would impart is to have diverse relationships, expose yourself to transformational projects and actually get involved.

Graeme Thompson

Graeme told IDG Connect that he secured his first role straight after graduation: “My first job was with Tandem Computers, which was a manufacturer of fault-tolerant computer systems. Right at the time I was leaving college, they were opening a factory in Scotland and I was fortunate to be one of the first people hired into the supply chain organisation. During my more than seven years at Tandem I held positions in procurement, production planning, inventory management and material control, giving me the opportunity to see how all parts of the factory operated from procuring the raw materials to finishing the products on the assembly line. I stayed in supply chain for 15 years before moving into IT. I didn’t know it at the time, but this gave me an appreciation for how processes had to work end-to-end and how those processes are supported by the applications.

“Around 1997, Tandem was acquired by Compaq and rolled into its server division. During this time, they asked me to relocate to the US for a two-year assignment to manage part of the supply chain integration. The project had a huge systems component, which became a critical part of my journey to my long-term success. A number of years later, the financial controller from Tandem had become the CFO at BEA systems and he asked me to come run IT for all business-facing applications as he remembered how, as a business leader, I was able to work effectively with IT to execute large projects.”

Talking about skills, Graeme said: “Cybersecurity, Salesforce and data analytics experience are highly sought after at the moment.

“An absolutely essential piece of advice I would impart is to have diverse relationships, expose yourself to transformational projects and actually get involved. I always tell people not to spend their entire career in just one domain but focus on acquiring an understanding of what happens once you are done with your part of something. You are so much more valuable to an organisation and company if you understand what happens after your part of the process is complete. There are so many different types of personas, so you have to be able to build and maintain relationships that help you acquire a broader and more robust perspective. Understanding how ALL things and people work together will keep you interested and motivated.”

Read the full interview at www.idgconnect.com/article/3609328/cio-spotlight-graeme-thompson-informatica.html

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