Olivia McCartan: This is a very exciting time for Product in Liberty IT

  • Photo: Olivia McCartan, Lead Product Owner at Liberty IT

    Olivia McCartan, Lead Product Owner at Liberty IT  talks to Sync NI about her interesting career history which includes previously embracing the 'Quebecois way of life' when working as a Team Lead on an enterprise-wide manufacturing and planning transformation initiative.

    Olivia since moved back home and joined Liberty IT 19 years ago, and explains below the reasons why she enjoys working at the company as well as why it is such an exciting time to be a part of the team and how important it is to support and encourage more women to join the thriving technology industry. 

    Give a brief outline of your career to date.

    I graduated with a degree in Industrial and Business systems and started my career as a Business Analyst in Bombardier Aerospace (Shorts) in Belfast where I spent a number of years in the IT dept working on various continuous improvement initiatives across their engineering and manufacturing domains.

    During this time, I was also able to train and achieve my Six Sigma Green Belt certification as part of my learning and development evolution. This was such a valuable skill set to lean into for the projects I was involved in.

    Seeking new challenges and experiences, I relocated to Montreal to the company’s main Canadian manufacturing site. Here I worked as a Team Lead on an enterprise-wide manufacturing and planning transformation initiative. This was a wonderful experience both professionally and personally and I thoroughly enjoyed the Quebecois way of life. As much as I loved living and working in Canada I missed home and wanted to return home.

    After returning to Belfast, I was fortunate to receive an offer to join Liberty IT as a Business Analyst. That was 19 years ago, and I am still grateful for the opportunity to work with such a fantastic organisation. The work environment at Liberty IT has been consistently enjoyable throughout my tenure, and I continue to find fulfilment in my role here.

    What I enjoy most about my work is the ever-evolving nature of Product Management. Staying up to date with emerging trends and industry practices is essential, and I strive to be at the forefront of this evolution.

    As a Product Owner, my primary satisfaction comes from solving the right problems for our customers and colleagues, driving real value for the company. When I receive positive feedback from end users or see the impact our solutions have on revenue and operational costs, it validates the hard work and effort put into the job.

    What Product initiatives are you currently working on?

    This is a very exciting time for Product in Liberty IT and across our parent company, Liberty Mutual Insurance. Product is recognised as a key enabler to elevate the way we execute on solving problems through technology. I am currently working with my Product colleagues to accelerate our journey to become a world class Product centric organisation with our Liberty Mutual Insurance partners.

    This includes executing on initiatives such as enhancing our product skills and literacy and leveraging the power of GenAI to assist with tasks such as data analysis and backlog management.

    Is Product Management an area of growth for Liberty IT?

    Product Management is an area of growth for Liberty IT, and we have cultivated a vibrant and energetic Product community. Monthly meetings allow us to connect, share knowledge, and work on initiatives that promote Product thinking throughout the organisation.

    We are also expanding our Product family and are currently hiring for Product owners. We have also recently launched a mentoring program for Product Owners, providing support and guidance in their career development.

    Liberty IT is leading the way with its Employee Resource Groups – are you involved in any of the groups?

    In addition to my work, I am proud to be involved in the Liberty IT Women in Tech Employee Resource Group, particularly the mentoring circle sessions. It is essential to support and empower women in the technology industry, and this group provides a valuable network for our female colleagues.

    Despite my many years with Liberty IT, I am continuously looking for ways to challenge myself and further develop my Product career. The future holds endless possibilities, and I am excited to embrace new challenges, build relationships, and continue growing both professionally and personally.

    READ MORE: Roundtable event: 'We explore why FDI's invest in Belfast'

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