Georgia Swanson, ARQ’s Director of Customer and Marketing, leads with a customer centric approach and aims to inspire the next generation of techies

Georgia joined ARQ Group earlier in 2021 in the newly created role of Director of Customer and Marketing. We sat down to learn what led her to ARQ, what she hopes to achieve in this role, and what inspires her.

What’s been your experience prior to joining ARQ?

Prior to ARQ Group, I was at Optus for six years in a range of capacities, most recently leading the Product Execution team, a new stream within the business.

My experience is broad and spans across marketing, sales, go-to-market, product management and strategy/execution. My diverse and all-round skillset enabled the development of an inherent understanding of the impacts of my decisions and the ability of devising out of the box solutions to complex challenges.

How did your past work experience set you up for your role of Customer Director at ARQ?

My success in previous roles was always linked to a level of customer focus and prioritisation. The understanding of their needs to determine the right solution and analysing behavioural trends to inform the business strategy.

ARQ’s customers are at the centre of everything we do, so this ethos aligns perfectly with my own approach.  

What do you hope to achieve in this role?

Beyond my customer-facing work, I’m passionate about seeing increased female representation in the tech industry, particularly in leadership. Today in Australia, women only fill 28% of tech jobs – and whilst we’re seeing promising changes to these numbers – I see it as my responsibility to be an influential role model for other women and to encourage the next generation of leaders. My key focus over the next 6 months is to deliver a dedicated mentorship and advice program.

It’s important to me to be involved in leading positive change. I’ve personally had poor experiences in my past, and I’m passionate about ensuring those same experiences aren’t had by others. I’m proud to work for a company that prioritises the focus on our people.

What does ARQ’s value pillar of ‘innovation’ mean to you?

The way I see it, innovation at ARQ is two-fold. For our customers, it’s about leveraging new technologies to gain competitive differentiation, plus enabling opportunities and driving positive customer experiences.

For our teams, innovation is part of our DNA. We have an entire team at ARQ dedicated to this space. Yet we don’t innovate for the sake of it. It boils down to having a strong, insatiable sense of curiosity, encouraging diverse thinking within our teams, and ultimately having the courage to try new ideas and solutions others haven’t before.

What are the top trends you anticipate we’ll be seeing in the tech industry in the next 10 years?

Beyond the ongoing digital uptake and transformation we’ve seen recently, largely because of COVID and the digital blind spots it exposed for many companies; I think we’ll see a stronger focus on artificial intelligence and machine learning.

Adoption of these technologies will be gradual, however we’ve already witnessed an upwards trajectory in the last year as organisations look to digitise processes to improve efficiency amongst other benefits.

ARQ Group has recently launched a document digitiser built on Amazon Web Services which uses Amazon Textract. It’s a machine learning service that automatically extracts text, handwriting and data from scanned documents to provide highly accurate, digitised copies that require no manual review. The Document Digitiser is just the beginning of the use of machine learning across multiple industries on the journey to digital transformation, and I’m really excited to be a part of a company leading the charge in this space.

Finally, what would be your advice to the next generation of leaders?

Be authentic, be vulnerable and lead with empathy.

I’ve had great leaders and I’ve had not-so-great leaders, and it showed me how important it is to lead by example. The experience has helped shape the leader I am today.

Build a network of people who inspire you. It doesn’t have to be someone more senior, leadership is evident at all levels and anyone can be a leader. Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable, whether it be as simple as owning a mistake, or voicing your opinion. You don’t need to have all the answers, all the time, no one does. Your attitude and the strength of your relationships will set you apart.

If Georgia’s career trajectory has inspired you to start a career journey in technology, visit www.arq.group/job-search/ to find out more!

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