My Global Payments Career in Bournemouth
“We're a very global team - we have people all over the world working on the same product but delivering different components."
Gavin Lonsdale always envisioned a career in tech. After graduating with a degree in computing physics and electronics, he worked for a scientific instrumentation firm before moving to the financial sector.
Gavin is now executive director for EMEA Payment Strategy Technology and leads a team that builds payment systems moving money around the world.
Making the move to Bournemouth
Gavin spent 15 years in London and Asia working for one bank before J.P. Morgan contacted him in 2013 about a position in the Bournemouth Tech Centre. After making a visit to Bournemouth, he couldn't help but be impressed.
“I discovered how big and impactful the Bournemouth office was," he said. “My two daughters were quite young at the time, and the idea of raising them by the sea but still being able to have an impactful role won me over. I loved London but we had outgrown it in terms of our needs - Bournemouth suited us much better and I still had the same city finance career potential with J.P. Morgan there."
The location also has personal perks for Gavin and his family. Gone is his 50-minute commute to London during peak hours, replaced by a 25-minute drive that gives him an hour of daily family time he didn't have previously. He loves his children's outdoor upbringing and has taken advantage of being near the water himself.
“I sometimes surf on my way into work in the morning - it was amazing," he said. “Shower at work, and be at my desk for 9 a.m."
The centre of a global payments orbit
“We're a very global team - we have people all over the world working on the same product but delivering different components, "Gavin said. “A great plus for us in the UK is that we're the middle time zone between the U.S. and Asia Pacific, so we're the global coordination hub that links our teams together.”
"Having business and tech knowledge is crucial to applying technology solutions to specific client needs,” Gavin says. He describes payments as a growth industry with competition and constant change that provides opportunities to learn and innovate.
Shaping the culture
Gavin enjoys the collaborative culture of the Tech Centre and the firm. The diversity among team members is a strength, and he appreciates the encouragement all employees receive, regardless of their career level, to express themselves and contribute to the firm's operations. In Bournemouth, Gavin is part of a 10-year strategy team, a tech leadership team and serves as a coordinator for guest lectures with firm leaders. He's also heavily involved in recruitment and is a mentor for women in tech.
“I enjoy being part of shaping the culture too – you have to get involved to see change at work," he said.
Since the pandemic, Gavin's team adapted to connecting virtually, and meet online for a weekly quiz game each Friday evening. Gavin has also gotten creative with team building, taking virtual trips to India in November and April by waking up at 3 a.m. to connect with his team there. He's also increased his one-on-one meetups with team members to stay connected.
“I'm super proud of what my team has delivered - they do it all and I'm proud to be able to support them," Gavin said. “We've expanded from nine to 50 people with some amazing technologists - we set a high bar. It's a strong, diverse team gaining recognition for our capability. We've built a wonderful team in Bournemouth."