Head of Technology
Job TypeFull Time
Job FieldICT / Computer
Job Summary

Lead the agile solution design, deployment & ongoing optimization & evolution of enterprise wide technology products and services (full stack engineering & ownership / control) across multiple squads in complex & high impact business areas

Business complexity is determined by:

  • Customer Impact
  • Number of integration points:Data
  • Teams to talk to
  • Systems
  • Enabling function
  • 3rd party vs. internal
  • Complexity of business rules & Processes
  • Level of operational readiness
  • Introduction of new or changing old Tech (e.g. redo platforms)
  • Role this role reports to

Chief Operating Officer

Number and level of direct reports

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Risk Category for Sanctions

Overall job purpose

  • To coordinate country end-to-end execution of all prioritised, approved strategic technology change initiatives including group technology system enhancements, replacements and other projects through collaborative action of approved, optimised, limited resources.  To provide leadership to country technology strategic direction and advice COO and country leadership on necessary and appropriate technology based on industry and market movements.  Act as the liaison between country and regional/group technology teams.

Key accountabilities

Accountability:  Country Technology Leadership and People Management

  • Provide oversight and leadership to the in-country Technology team.
  • Key advisor to Management on leveraging technology as a key strategic business driver
  • Provide continuous people development and mentoring activities to managers and team professionals to achieve excellent business results. Teams include group technology experts, project managers, transformation / change mangers, business analysts, process managers, project assurance officers, systems managers and information analysts.
  • Action and drive people management strategy with People Business Partners (PBP) for the area with a focus on talent management, recruitment attraction, resourcing, development, and retention. Communicate the strategy to managers in the country.
  • Ensure the development of a high-performing team through embedding formal performance management (PM) and informal strengths based coaching.
  • Coach the management team on how to conduct meaningful PM discussions with their direct reports and ensure that they conduct the process effectively.
  • Approve training and development needs for Country Technology team. Ensure that   identified training is budgeted and executed.
  • Monitor and maintain a succession plan for key roles and management team in the country using the formal
  • Talent Management process for identified talent and approve succession plans for remaining roles.
  • Review the outcome of the Talent Review process and approve nominations for the country. Review effectiveness of the formal Talent Management process.
  • Action support from the PBP to interview and recruit direct reports and provide support to them during the recruitment of their teams on request.
  • Create effective workforce plans and recruitment demand plans for their areas. Determine which projects should be managed by team members and which ones should be contracted out.
  • Approve leave requests for direct reports and ensure that they manage the leave planning for their teams effectively.
  • Act as escalation point for all grievances raised in the Technology teams.
  • Ensure that all poor performance is addressed through the Performance Accelerators (PA) and that continued poor performance is adequately dealt with. Review programme reports to determine effectiveness of interventions.
  • Ensure employees are engaged and their efforts are recognised and rewarded.
  • Monitor conflict resolution between in-country and regional teams.
    Role/Person specification

Accountability:  Technology delivery management

  • Review and understand the country strategies and medium term plans (MTP) and ensure that new proposals for projects or initiatives are aligned to the elements before approving the proposals.
  • Review assessment of future needs for internal clients (though review of their MTP, strategy documents, regular interaction with business units), identify and define additional country projects in support of the overall business goals.
  • Prioritise the change portfolio, by reviewing all new business cases against the country strategic priorities and negotiating with seniors in the country to finalise the priority lists.
  • Oversee the execution of all projects, programmes and initiatives managed by the business and ensure that all key milestones are reported and risk rated and that outstanding issues or target dates exceeded area appropriately dealt with and escalated to project sponsors only when required.
  • Liaise with executives to support key programmes by communicating project intent and obtaining buy-in and resource allocation for delivery of the key components.
  • Resolve high-level issues within the Country through providing mitigative actions and driving the implementation of these actions.
  • Ensure, for all new project and system change requests, that a thorough risk assessment is conducted to determine the interdependencies between projects and the impact proposed changes may have on seemingly unrelated processes and systems. Review recommendations prepared by the team on how to address these and determine whether the risk and mitigation is adequate or the change should be altered or declined.
  • Monitor and prioritise the demand pipeline received from country into Africa Technology (AT): balancing the change requirements from business with stability and requirements from AT
  • Technology, Regional teams and in-country stakeholders and investigate relevant systems, processes and procedure improvements
  • Ensure quick response to regional requests to acquire designs, cost estimates, quotes and contribute to the business case preparation to access the funds required to enable the country initiatives.
    alignment of programmes.
  • Ensure high standards  of Technology services are delivered by managing and monitoring the Technology Service
  • Level Agreement (SLA), interact with Sourcing to acquire quality contracts with third party vendors to support design and development of products to delivery high level of service to business
  • Understand over all business dynamics, to provide optimal delivery across the business units and utilise shared services centre. Ensure that the successful end-to-end delivery of technology change within the country through effective service delivery and sector project delivery.

Education and experience required

B-degree in (Field                      ) (NQF level no.       )
(No of years) years (Technical/Managerial) experience
Knowledge and skills: (Maximum of 6)

Competencies: (Maximum of 8 competencies)

  • Deciding and initiating action
  • Learning and researching
  • Entrepreneurial and commercial thinking
  • Relating and networking
  • Adapting and responding to change
  • Persuading and influencing
  • Creating and innovating
    Accountability:  Business and cost management
  • Coordinate the efforts of the different teams under management to ensure minimal duplication of efforts, maximum efficiency and to maximise value for money.
  • Approve re-allocation of resources between different areas e.g. allocate headcount or budgets within overall approved resources for the year.
  • Contribute to the development of strategy for the next 2-3 years by providing a view on potential improvements for products or services and an assessment of the existing situation and anticipated changes in the external environment.
  • Monitor departmental budgets including signing off of invoices and quotes within mandate. Escalate out of budget items to the regional CIO/COO for approval.
  • Monitor, manage and record country change budget spend within budget.
  • Sign off capital expenditure within budget. This includes approving purchase or sell decisions for desktop computers, laptops , departmental equipment etc.
  • Investigate effectiveness of processes and systems in use and make alterations where required while ensuring adherence to global governance requirements.
  • Monitor benchmark productivity of country against regional and create measures to improve productivity.
  • Agree and manage service offerings and Service Level Agreements in conjunction with internal customers (agree annually and measure on a monthly basis).
  • Plan the Technology resource requirements for the country (including people, Capex, Opex, systems and Strategic Investment), negotiate and secure its allocation to the business unit and ensure delivery based on the promised business results.
  • Translate business strategy into meaningful operational targets and strategic focus areas for the business unit under management. Ensure that the focus areas are disseminated to all levels in the business unit.
  • Action integration of internal supply chain for the business unit. Work with seniors in those areas to improve service delivery for the business unit and ensure maximum utilisation of shared services.
    Accountability: Systems and Process Management
  • Manage end-to-end ownership, to ensure that all technology requirements are met for day-to-day systems use, performance and maintenance, enhancements and change projects with adequate service level agreements in place for Country and the Shared Services hub.
  • Align business and technology strategy for the country to drive the implementation of requirements stipulated in thestrategy and business needs through facilitating collaborative sessions between business and technology
  • Action and deliver country technology architecture in alignment with enterprise architecture and standards
  • Manage key Technology project as set out by AT project management methodology to drive business progress andperformance and to determine business requirements
  • Plan knowledge sharing through engagement with key global stakeholders and
  • Programme manage implementation of major system changes (e.g. Shared Service hub build out)including contracting with internal and external providers.
  • Ensure that the team produces quality documents required for systems enhancements including Business
  • Requirement Definition (BRD), Business System Specification inputs (owned by Africa Technology), User
  • Acceptance Test plans ad reports and all other change governance documentation required.
  • Ensure that all policies, procedures, standards and governance for the country are adequately documented and published according to Africa Technology standards by assigning responsibility within the team and having coaching sessions with team members to help them understand requirements.
  • Ensure services escalation framework is developed and maintained for all Technology services across Country.
    Accountability:  Governance, Control and Risk management
  • Action and drive a culture of proactive compliance in the function.
  • Conduct root cause analysis, design and implement mitigation plans to ensure business unit is prepared for future disruption in production.
  • Ensure the development of programme update reports according to the frequencies determined by the key stakeholders for each programme. Review reports prepared for key initiatives and write the executive summaries for those programmes based on the key risks, issues and milestones. Present the reports to the programme steering committees.
  • Review project risk logs to identify high impact high probability items and work with Country Risk & Compliance teams to ensure that adequate risk mitigation and risk acceptance takes place.
  • Ensure that the team maintains an adequate log of programme activities and report items to regional team and country OPCO where required.
  • Ensure compliance of all programmes, projects and initiatives in the country with programme governance standards(policies, procedures, methods, templates, reporting standards, version control etc) by reviewing samples of programme files prepared in the team on an ad hoc basis. Ensure regular communication of governance requirements to members of the Projects & Change team.
  • Ensure adequate reporting mechanisms are in place to track if the benefits defined in Business Cases are realised.
  • Ensure that all issues with benefits realisation are escalated to the project sponsors and advise them on how to update business cases to reflect new realities or if programmes need to be stopped due to changed circumstances.
  • Ensure quality of project delivery, through conducting occasional formal audits on project documentation and reviewing the project assurance reports prepared in the team.
  • Take full accountability for the resolution of issues raised in Management Assurance and Barclays Internal Audit reviews and ensure that a culture of zero tolerance for audit failures is embedded in the department.
  • Ensure solutions are delivered and implemented according to original design, allowing for tactical changes according to longer term strategic plans that comply with Barclays policies
  • Review technology and information architecture artefacts within the context of the Systems Development Life Cycle(SDLC).
  • Act as key contributor for the area’s Risk Management Control Framework.
  • Review audit scopes issues/findings logs defined by managers in the team and Barclays Internal Audit or Management
  • Assurance prior to audits commencing to ensure adequate attention given to closure within the agreed timelines.
  • Approve required compliance attestations and ensure that impacted team members complete their attestations.
  • Review and approve Control Self Assessments (CSA) and Risk and Control Assessments (RCA’s) prepared in the function. Complete attestations to testify to the adequacy of controls on request.
  • Review the Business Continuity Management (BCM) plan prepared for all processes for adequacy. Ensure required tests of the plan are executed and that all test failures are addressed.
  • Oversee the development of Key Technology Risk framework. Actively work to minimise the amount of economic capital that has to be set aside for operational risk.
  • Action, drive and implement Disaster Recovery (DR) for all aspects to ensure ongoing production and quick turnaround times in cases where there are system down times e.g. Severity 1 and Severity 2 etc.
    Education and experience required
  • NQF Level 7: Honours/Masters Degree
  • An appropriate university degree, with preference for a B Sc., B Sc (Eng), BSc (Computers/IT)
  • Project management diploma or Certificate
  • Technology degree or advanced certificate
  • Minimum of 10 years experience in Group Technology
  • Financial Management experience
  • Minimum 10-15 years in change and project management
  • Minimum 5 years proven people management experience/leading teams
  • Minimum of 5 years experience in financial management, Strategic Planning, Governance processes and reporting
  • Proven ability to interpret strategy and execute effectively
  • Proven experience in managing and delivering on a complex business project Portfolio
    Competencies: (Maximum of 8 competencies)
  • Deciding and initiating action
  • Persuading and influencing
  • Leading and supervising
  • Creating and innovating
  • Relating and networking
  • Coaching and mentoring
  • Formulating strategies and concepts
  • Applying expertise and technology
  • Entrepreneurial and commercial thinking
  • Politically astute and aware of the potential impact of wider organizational issues.
    Competencies: (Maximum of 8 competencies)
  • Deciding and initiating action
  • Learning and researching
  • Entrepreneurial and commercial thinking
  • Relating and networking
  • Adapting and responding to change
  • Persuading and influencing
  • Problem solving and decision making
  • Negotiation
  • Creating and innovating
  • Applying expertise and technology
  • Entrepreneurial and commercial thinking
  • Politically astute and aware of the potential impact of wider organizational issues
    Knowledge& Skills: (Maximum of 8)
  • Leadership capability
  • Change management
  • Project management and expert knowledge of techniques for planning, monitoring and controlling complex portfolios of change
  • Financial management
  • Risk management
  • Commercial awareness
  • Business consulting acumen and management
  • Africa Technology expertise application


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About Absa Bank Limited

Absa Bank Limited (Absa) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Barclays Africa Group Limited. Absa offers personal and business banking, credit cards, corporate and investment banking, wealth and investment management as well as bancassurance. Barclays Africa Group Limited is 62.3% owned by Barclays Bank PLC and is listed on the JSE Limited. The Group is one of Africa’s major financial services providers offering personal and business banking, credit cards, corporate and investment banking, wealth and investment management as well as bancassurance. The Group was formed through combining Absa Group Limited and Barclays’ African operations on 31 July 2013. Reflecting the enlarged group’s pan-African focus, the Group's name changed from Absa Group Limited, to Barclays Africa Group Limited on 2 August 2013. Registered head offices are in South Africa and the Group has majority stakes in banks in Botswana, Ghana,Kenya, Mauritius, Mozambique, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania (Barclays Bank Tanzania and National Bank of Commerce), Uganda and Zambia. The Group has representative offices in Namibia and Nigeria, as well as bancassurance operations in Botswana, Mozambique, South Africa and Zambia. Barclays Bank Kenya and Barclays Bank Botswana continue to be listed on their respective stock exchanges.Barclays Bank PLC has operations in Egypt and Zimbabwe, which are part of the African business and continue to be run by Barclays Africa Group’s management