Jul 17, 2020

AWS and HSBC partner on strategic cloud agreement

Cloud
Technology
IoT
Innovation
Georgia Wilson
3 min
Cloud platform
In a recent announcement made by AWS and HSBC, the two companies have entered into a strategic cloud agreement...

The announcement made by Amazon Web Services (AWS) details HSBC Holdings plc’s selection of the organisation as a key, long term strategic cloud provider. The partnership with AWS will drive HSBC’s digital transformation, as well as deliver new and personalised banking services. 

“HSBC is continuing to expand its use of AWS to power its digital transformation and deliver innovative financial services that help customers manage, protect, and grow their wealth in new and more personalised ways,” commented Frank Fallon, Vice President, Financial Services at AWS. 

“We look forward to our continued collaboration with HSBC as they leverage AWS’s proven capabilities, reliability, and security to drive efficiency across their business and become a more agile organisation in the cloud.”

As part of the multi year agreement, HSBC will be making the AWS technology available across its lines of business, which will start with its customer facing applications and application modernisation within its global wealth and personal banking business. 

This migration to AWS will enable HSBC to drive innovation, automate key processes and enhance operational efficiencies across its range of personal finance services. The global infrastructure provided by AWS will allow HSBC to run and scale applications across its global locations with high availability and reliability. 

As part of the agreement HSBC will use AWS’s extensive cloud services including compute, containers, storage, database, analytics, machine learning, and security. These products will enable HSBC to develop new digital products and support security compliance standards for its customers. One particular way HSBC plans to utilise AWS’s services includes the use of Amazon Kinesis to create a personalised and customer centric banking experience.

“Our work with AWS is an example of how HSBC continues to invest in secure and advanced technologies to make our digital banking experience even better for customers,” add Dinesh Keswani, Chief Technology Officer and CIO for Digital, HSBC. 

“Our ambition is to make it easy, safe, and reliable for customers to bank with us, whenever and wherever they are. HSBC’s collaboration with AWS helps us to deliver innovative banking solutions to customers at a faster rate, starting with our Wealth & Personal Banking business.”

About Amazon Web Services (AWS)

Dating back to 2006, Amazon Web Services (AWS) has been providing comprehensive and innovative cloud platform solutions for 14 years. AWS offers its customers more than 175 fully featured services for compute, storage, databases, networking, analytics, robotics, machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), mobile, security, hybrid, virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR), media, and application development, deployment, and management, from its 76 availability zones.

AWS helps organisations to power their infrastructure, become more agile, and improve costs.

HSBC Holdings plc

Founded in 1965, HSBC is one of the largest banking and financial services organisations in the world, serving over 40 million customers. “We aim to be where the growth is, connecting customers to opportunities, enabling businesses to thrive and economies to prosper, and ultimately helping people to fulfil their hopes and realise their ambitions.”

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Jun 12, 2021

How changing your company's software code can prevent bias

Deltek
diversity
softwarecode
inclusivity
Lisa Roberts, Senior Director ...
3 min
Removing biased terminology from software can help organisations create a more inclusive culture, argues Lisa Roberts, Senior Director of HR at Deltek

Two-third of tech professionals believe organizations aren’t doing enough to address racial inequality. After all, many companies will just hire a DEI consultant, have a few training sessions and call it a day. 

Wanting to take a unique yet impactful approach to DEI, Deltek, the leading global provider of software and solutions for project-based businesses, took a look at  and removed all exclusive terminology in their software code. By removing terms such as ‘master’ and ‘blacklist’ from company coding, Deltek is working to ensure that diversity and inclusion are woven into every aspect of their organization. 

Business Chief North America talks to Lisa Roberts, Senior Director of HR and Leader of Diversity & Inclusion at Deltek to find out more.

Why should businesses today care about removing company bias within their software code?  

We know that words can have a profound impact on people and leave a lasting impression. Many of the words that have been used in a technology environment were created many years ago, and today those words can be harmful to our customers and employees. Businesses should use words that will leave a positive impact and help create a more inclusive culture in their organization

What impact can exclusive terms have on employees? 

Exclusive terms can have a significant impact on employees. It starts with the words we use in our job postings to describe the responsibilities in the position and of course, we also see this in our software code and other areas of the business. Exclusive terminology can be hurtful, and even make employees feel unwelcome. That can impact a person’s desire to join the team, stay at a company, or ultimately decide to leave. All of these critical actions impact the bottom line to the organization.    

Please explain how Deltek has removed bias terminology from its software code

Deltek’s engineering team has removed biased terminology from our products, as well as from our documentation. The terms we focused on first that were easy to identify include blacklist, whitelist, and master/slave relationships in data architecture. We have also made some progress in removing gendered language, such as changing he and she to they in some documentation, as well as heteronormative language. We see this most commonly in pick lists that ask to identify someone as your husband or wife. The work is not done, but we are proud of how far we’ve come with this exercise!

What steps is Deltek taking to ensure biased terminology doesn’t end up in its code in the future?

What we are doing at Deltek, and what other organizations can do, is to put accountability on employees to recognize when this is happening – if you see something, say something! We also listen to feedback our customers give us and have heard their feedback on this topic. Those are both very reactive things of course, but we are also proactive. We have created guidance that identifies words that are more inclusive and also just good practice for communicating in a way that includes and respects others.

What advice would you give to other HR leaders who are looking to enhance DEI efforts within company technology? 

My simple advice is to start with what makes sense to your organization and culture. Doing nothing is worse than doing something. And one of the best places to start is by acknowledging this is not just an HR initiative. Every employee owns the success of D&I efforts, and employees want to help the organization be better. For example, removing bias terminology was an action initiated by our Engineering and Product Strategy teams at Deltek, not HR. You can solicit the voices of employees by asking for feedback in engagement surveys, focus groups, and town halls. We hear great recommendations from employees and take those opportunities to improve. 

 

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