Inside Nationwide's Innovation Lab


Harriet is on the Nationwide Emerging Talent Programme, and has recently joined our Innovation Lab as her second placement on the Digital and Change Graduate Scheme. Here she shares her experiences in the lab.

About Nationwide's Innovation lab

From day one at Nationwide, I was curious about the Innovation Lab. I have always seen it as at the forefront of Nationwide's technological drive, informing the organisation on how we can continue to be innovative. I made regular visits to the Lab, went on the tours conducted by Group Innovation and was completely hooked!

“ The Lab is an exciting hotspot of experts in research, design and development, and has the same buzz as a tech start-up. ”

As you can imagine, I was extremely pleased when I was offered a graduate placement within Group Innovation, and I am now working as an Insight and Innovation Manager within the team.

Being a part of a Graduate programme was important to me as I felt that it was the best way to gain strong career progression within an organisation. My first placement at Nationwide was in the Digital Proposition team. I thoroughly enjoyed my time with the team and had the opportunity to work with the Studio and Customer Experience team. The highlight of my placement was working with the Digital Insight and Analytics team to develop a tool for our Digital Proposition Managers to see and understand the traffic to our customer website.

My role in the Nationwide Innovation lab

At the moment I am working as an Insight and Innovation Manager. The role is split into two parts, one to research an area in our backlog and create an insight paper for the Board to review, and the other to manage the project ideas through to prototype. I am currently working on a project looking at Digital Identity options for Nationwide. With the onset of Open Banking, and as the financial industry begins to work more collaboratively, we will have a part to play in making customer experiences more convenient, secure and fast with a unified digital identity solution.

The opportunity within Group Innovation gives me the best of both worlds, as well as developing my skills in research, writing, stakeholder management and project management. I have also picked up skills in running focus groups and brainstorming sessions, and have enhanced my understanding of the digital world around me.

What am I working on next?

The Innovation Lab recently produced a behavioural biometric prototype which measures the way someone interacts with their phone to provide an additional security check. Next, I will be helping the Lab look beyond this at other biometric solutions and other ways to help authenticate and identify customers.

“ Innovation is not just about technology, and every employee has an opportunity to innovate. ”

Recently, I took part in an internal event called The Big Conversation, an initiative driven by new CEO Joe Garner to allow all 17,000 of our employees put forward ideas about how Nationwide can improve. I helped facilitate a session around “Putting Members First”, one of our core values and inherent to our internal culture. This has been a great opportunity to be a part of and help enhance an important collaboration across our business.

I’m really enjoying my time in the innovation lab and I’m looking forward to taking the skills and innovative thinking I’ve developed here to another area of Nationwide when I rotate in January.


  • Matt

    Wow this sounds amazing! Go Nationwide!!

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