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Member Spotlight: Florence Stanton, Digital Programmes Advisor, Shell February 26, 2019

What are the key priorities of your digital transformation programme?

For 2019, there is a large project surrounding a new DAM and its integration into the wider Shell architecture. There are a multitude of large projects that we are hoping to see completed/largely developed in 2019, including a chatbot piece, improved personalisation and some internal ecommerce work. There are a few more interesting projects that will really kick off in 2019, although under lock and key for now. 

What are your current challenges and how are you looking to overcome them?

I think there’s a common challenge that a lot of organisations face regarding general adoption and acceptance of the necessity of new digital products/platforms. There can also be a lack of understanding surrounding how and when to use these platforms and so it can take time to ensure these services are being used to their full potential. To overcome this problem there’s a requirement for a strong communications strategy with clear timelines and opportunities for training/learning about the digital service. The other end of this is that people across the organisation can be very interested in a piece of technology and so want to ensure they aren’t left behind a current trend (e.g. chatbots).

What's the most exciting project/initiative you are currently working on?

I’m really enjoying the chatbot piece that I’m working on, as it has given me the opportunity to immerse myself in learning about NLP and machine learning, which are huge trends now. I find it can be difficult to stay up to date with all the trends when there are so many that are rapidly appearing and growing exponentially. It can also be hard to predict how long it will take for a trend to stagnate and disappear, so it will be interesting to see how far chatbots can be taken and in which direction. There are vast opportunities but it’s hard to determine how long it will take for the general adoption of these technologies depending on the industry.

Is there an emerging technology you are especially interested in, and why? 

Augmented data discovery looks set to have a vast amount of development in 2019 and could drastically change the way analytics are viewed and reported on. From a more personal side, the rapid evolution of 3D and 4D printing is likely to be a game-changer in a variety of industries, but medicine and engineering will particularly see the benefits. 

You began your professional journey in the fashion sector, what attracted you to your current role within the oil and gas sector?

Fashion can be an incredibly interesting industry, I learnt a vast amount in a relatively small period, but much of that knowledge centralises around superficial topics like how to pair chinos with the right style of loafers and other irrelevant knowledge. Also, fashion is not an industry suited for everybody, and I always felt that it wasn’t for me. The oil and energy sector is constantly evolving, often in unexpected ways, and therefore there are so many interesting learning opportunities. The industry is also broader, with more scope for future roles.

Top tip for wellbeing in the workplace? 

Make time for yourself during the working day – set realistic, achievable goals each day with clear timelines which include time for a break! Sometimes giving myself 10 minutes to get a coffee with a colleague is far more needed than initially expected.

You've been afforded a one-way ticket to Mars, what one digital device would you pack?

My phone – just think of the Instagram opportunities.

Interview by Sarah Cooper, Membership Consultant, Digital Leadership Forum

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