Barclays: International Financial Institution

Barclays is an international financial institution, which provides a number of financial services for businesses and customers at a global level. The story began in 1690, when two individuals, John Freame and Thomas Gold started trading as goldsmith bankers on Lombard Street, London. In 1736 John's son-in-law, James Barclay, joined the business which is how the business took on the name we all know so well now. From then on, Barclays has made triumphant strides, taking leadership in innovation; funding the world's first industrial steam railways, naming the UK's first female branch manager and introducing the world's first ATM machine.

These are just a few of the monumental highlights from the first 300 years. Barclays now has one of the strongest presences in the world, with a ranking of 15 just last year - in 2017.

They're always developing and innovating in order to be able to offer a wide range of products and services that help customers and clients achieve their ambitions and suffice their needs.

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Barclays offer a range of products and services, from award-winning mortgage products to wealth and investment management, and from innovative payment systems to digital firsts in mobile banking.

Barclays is `guided by one common purpose, which is "creating opportunities to rise". They are a company of opportunity makers, working collectively to help customers, clients, colleagues and society rise. "By creating opportunities for people to rise we recognise that Barclays rises too". They also measure and reward their people, not just on commercial results, but on how they live the Values and bring them to life every day and judge success on a balanced scorecard of impact.

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The organisation follows a set of values called RISES - each letter representing a different value. Respect being the first one, Barclays colleagues respect and value those we work with, and the contribution that they make. Second one is Integrity - to act fairly, ethically and openly in all they do. Followed by Service, putting their clients and customers at the centre of what they do and Excellence - to use our energy, skills and resources to deliver the best, sustainable results. Lastly Stewardship - We are passionate about leaving things better than we found them. All Barclays colleagues are required to take part in Values training, led by internal Values Leaders from across the business. They learn about what the Values mean, and how to put them into practice.

The department I currently work in is Change management. The Change management teams goal is to maintain service stability by ensuring that changes go through the correct level of documentation, review and approval before they are implemented on Barclays IT infrastructure and applications. Their purpose is to support this goal by:

  • Ensuring that changes are raised and managed in accordance with the published process controls.
  • Facilitating the progression of change records through the lifecycle by ensuring they are properly inspected, validated, checked, approved and closed.
  • Driving improvements to change quality by working with change raising teams to improve their process maturity.
  • Providing guidance and training.
  • Undertaking governance and control across both processes ensuring adherence to the agreed standards.
  • Continually developing and improving the tool and process.

I play a role in the Change assurance team which supports the Change Managements department from a Barclays International perspective. Within this team my responsibility is to carry out BAU tasks accordingly to the rota and management expectations. The tasks consist of Monitoring the team mailbox, this entails responding to queries, providing correct and necessary information to the right units of people or individuals or directing them to the right person of contact including our stakeholders and even cooperating teams. Another task that I carry out on a daily basis is offline reviews which entails investigating Changes of Minimal and Low Risk Level using tools such as Microsoft Excel and internal tools called ServiceFirst, Condeco and more.

l to ensure that these changes meet the Minimum Acceptance Criteria (MAC) and in cases where they do not, I inform them and enlightening them on the steps then need to take in order to comply and in turn receive my approval. This is similar to chairing/taking minutes at our Change Approval Board (CAB) meetings. At these meeting we invite coordinators of change that are categorised as Medium or Moderate Risk Level to represent their change and give us an overview to which we respond with a consensus. Dependant on whether i get a sufficient amount of information to support the MAC and assurance that this has been well thought through and has a controlled impact, I either Approve, defer - caveat, decline etc. Additionally, to this meeting I also host/minute failed change meetings, identify and review New Changes through running analytic reports using Service First and Excel and co-host other CABs.

The Role of an Administrator

The function or role of a business administrator is crucial for any business. It entails having a good understanding of business operations and processes in order to ensure actions carried out within the organisation are completed efficiently and effectively. On a daily basis this may mean being involved in accounting, marketing, finance, economics, as well as human resources, statistics and decision making. With this in mind a business administrator need to have a varied skill set as suggested by Henri Fayol in his theory of 'five functions of Management'

Appendix 1:

Justification for an Administrator

The lack of an Administrator can lead to chaos. Not only does the function allow for efficient organisation of people and other resources but also to direct activities towards common missions, goals and objectives.

These benefits of the Administrative function entail having security in the fact that the business is being cared for from all angles. Whether it is for example, financially, where administration will ensure for the most cost efficient decisions to be made which means the business would be financially safe and would mean the business would not be in the danger of bankruptcy. Another benefit of an administrator include that they offer the firm a protection against legal actions, as they make sure the firm stays in the legal requirements and doesn't do anything which could result to a large fine or even ban for the business, because this could either put the business in debt or bring a bad reputation. Lastly, another benefit is that administrators can restructure a company if they are in trouble. They are very experienced and they can turn a business upside down from being in debt to make their way up and start making profit again.

On the other hand, the impact of not having an administrative function in your business can be immense as it can cause many problems for a firm. Firstly, it will mean that managers and executives will have to take on the responsibilities of administration which could overload them with work. This will take up valuable time that they should be spending on future strategies for improving the business and helping it grow further on, but it could mean that the business could decrease in growth if the manager does not have the time to plan and create future strategies. It will also mean poor efficiency and productivity. It can lead to poor bookkeeping or even a complete lack of it which can put the business in debt or even cause bankruptcy as a worst case scenario. It will also mean that you won't be achieving the highest amount of profit that you could potentially get as the managers are not focusing on the important areas of work like they should be. The absence of business admin can also cause a significant lack of good communication. No matter how big or small a business is, good communication is key as without it a business can't run as there will not be a link between departments or business areas.

Having discussed just these few factors can cause financial, regulatory or reputational damage, but businesses will face many more without this fundamental function.

In working in Change management for Barclaycard, I have taken on the role of an administrator in order to protect the Global IT Production Environment. I ensure the Change Management standard is adhered to by everyone and that there are as few uncontrolled or unapproved change, minimising the risk of disruption or outage to IT Services and the potential financial, regulatory or reputational damage that might ensue as a result. This entails carrying out many administrative functions which I will discuss in the next sections.

Updated: May 19, 2021
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Barclays: International Financial Institution. (2019, Dec 08). Retrieved from

Barclays: International Financial Institution essay
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