Back to top

Our People



Our People

Our people drive our success. We attract the greatest talent in Northern Ireland and deliver breakthrough performance for our parent company.

Meet some of our employees

Dale Long Headshot.
Dale Long
Service Engineer
Tina Ho Headshot.
Tina Ho
Application Developer
Neil Bailie Headshot.
Neil Bailie
Cloud Security Engineer
Philip McShane Headshot.
Philip McShane
Machine Learning Engineer
Lynsey Mcwhinney Headshot.
Lynsey Mcwhinney
Information Analyst
Ryan Gamble Headshot.
Ryan Gamble
User Experience Product Designer
Laura Sloan Headshot.
Laura Sloan
Senior Financial Consultant
Brian Lecky Headshot.
Brian Lecky
Cyber Security Risk Assessor

Dale Long

Service Engineer
Allstate Northern Ireland

Role — I recently joined the Splunk Infrastructure support team. Helping my team to provide enterprise support for the Splunk monitoring tool used widely across the company.

Background/experience — I received a computing with Education degree from University of Ulster and was a placement student at Allstate NI prior to starting my (almost) 2-year journey at the company.

Positives — This role provides opportunity for individuals to work with people from across the enterprise with the chance to work on several different projects and aspects of the tool. I have the chance to work on both communicating with clients and also being involved in the technical side of the role (working with the Linux terminal and some light sys admin work).

Advice — Using Splunk isn't exactly something that's ingrained into everyone who works in IT, so going into the role with the ability to throw your hands up and say, "I just don't know… yet" is a phrase you can't be shy about using. It's fast paced both self and guided education, which makes it slightly intense and a lot of information because it's a tool that uses a lot of different add on applications.

Skills/Personality — Knowledge of Networking or at least an interest in Networks is valuable to anyone going into a Splunk role. Ambition to want to learn new skills, such as the SPL language (Splunk's own SQL variant), and the patience to learn new skills are good in any role. Communication is also vital as there is a lot of interactions with clients in the enterprise.

Tina Ho

Application Developer
Allstate Northern Ireland

Role — I am an Application Developer for PT Alliance Commons. We collaborate with various teams across all lines of insurance (Property, Condo, Boat, Auto) to help deliver a quality product.

Background/experience — My Undergraduate degree was BA Sociology. However, after working in a cinema as a supervisor, I decided to do something more challenging with my life and applied to do a MSc conversion course in Software Development at QUB. This was a condensed course over the space of a year which gave me the skills to become a software developer.

Positives — I have learnt to use Maven and GitHub which are essential to software development. Although my main development language is Java, I also get the chance to code using HTML, XSL, XML, SQL and JavaScript through Waterfall, Agile and Scaled Agile methodologies. This means the work for Commons can vary day to day.

Advice — Stay positive, Commons and software development can be very challenging but there is a great team to help support you. Don't be afraid to ask questions, it's how you learn! Also remember to make notes on what you have learnt for future use and for new team members.

Skills/personality — Have the confidence to try new things, and the ability to bounce back when something doesn't go according to plan on the first attempt. Good communication and interpersonal skills are also needed as you will work with people across all shores.

Neil Bailie

Cloud Security Engineer
Allstate Northern Ireland

Role —The Cloud Security Engineering team is responsible for ensuring IaaS, PaaS and SaaS solutions in the public cloud are delivered securely. We define patterns and practices which form our Cloud Security Framework. The role takes a DevOps approach to engineer solutions, using automation and CI/CD to deliver secure, repeatable, scalable solutions in the public cloud. We operate an agile methodology and use pair programming when working on stories.

Background/experience — I graduated with a degree in Computer Science from Queens University Belfast and spent the next 15 years building up my skills in a variety of roles, mostly focused around the Microsoft stack. I started to work to deliver cloud based solutions in 2016 which was a rapid but rewarding learning curve. In 2018, I was excited to join Allstate NI as it provided me the opportunity to work with cutting edge cloud technologies and deliver solutions at scale.

Positives — I get to work with a very talented team that is based in both Northern Ireland and the US, my peers are subject matter experts and I'm constantly learning new things and being challenged to deliver secure, repeatable and robust solutions. Locally Allstate Northern Ireland is a very positive place to work, I feel like the company put me and my wellbeing first and ensure I have a healthy work life balance. Our new building in Belfast is state of the art and a very enjoyable place to work.

Advice — You'll be constantly learning; cloud technologies iterate at a rapid pace and so you need to have a willingness to continuously learn and be prepared to dedicate time to it. Get as much exposure to the technologies as you can, public cloud is available to everyone, setup your own labs and be prepared to invest in developing your career.

Skills/personality — The role fits well with individuals who continually like to learn and develop new skills. We pair up when working on sprints, so working well with others in the team is very important. Skills and experience which would fit well with this role include DevOps, Automation, Cloud and Virtualisation technologies.

Philip McShane

Machine Learning Engineer
Allstate Northern Ireland

Role — I'm a machine learning Engineer in the ANI Cognitive Automation Incubator

Background/experience — My previous experience has mainly been in research at Queen's University Belfast, where I worked on applying deep learning to visual speech recognition. My research involved working with both computer vision and speech recognition which gave me the opportunity to learn about cutting edge developments in both these areas. I have also worked with a Belfast based start-up on developing audio-visual speech recognition based solutions for commercial applications.

Positives — Machine learning can bring benefits to many different areas. Working in areas like computer vision, natural language processing, and chatbots means there is great variety in our team's projects.

Advice — Be willing to step outside of your comfort zone. You develop the most when facing and overcoming new challenges.

Skills/personality — A strong mathematical background is extremely useful in helping to understanding the algorithms used in machine learning. Being able to clearly and confidently explain the ideas behind machine learning in a way that can be understood by non-experts can be invaluable in bring the full value of machine learning to the business.

Lynsey Mcwhinney

Information Analyst
Allstate Northern Ireland

Role — Our team is responsible for administering access to company resources, ensuring any requests for access have been appropriately approved and are permitted. We strive to fulfill access requests within target Service Level Agreements (SLAs) while ensuring integrity and adherence to Allstate's security policy and standards.

Background/experience — I studied Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) at the University of Ulster, Jordanstown. I joined Allstate as a graduate 3 years ago and have worked in Security ever since.

Positives — As requirements are ever changing and new processes are introduced we are encouraged to use our knowledge and experience to look for any risks associated with new and current processes and be transparent about any issues we may discover.

Advice — There are opportunities on our team to get involved in different projects. We are constantly looking to improve our processes and services through automation and clean-up projects. A willingness to adapt and perform a diverse range of tasks is important.

Skills/Personality — Access control is important to data security because it ensures authentication and authorization to company resources and assets. Without properly implemented and maintained access controls data, assets and resources are at risk of exploitation. Through this we have a responsibility to be vigilant and security aware.

Ryan Gamble

User Experience Product Designer
Allstate Northern Ireland

Role — My role as a User Experience product designer is to create digital solutions for Allstate employees and customers that are helpful and easy to use. To achieve this, I carry out tasks such as conducting user research, use of information architecture, interaction design, visual design and usability testing.

Background/experience — I had an interest in development through school which I carried through to a Multimedia Design degree at Ulster University in which I graduated in 2016. I have worked in Allstate (Compozed) since leaving university.

Positives — Working in user experience allows me to create solutions which have the user at its heart. This allows me to talk to customers and employees of Allstate from all over the US. This has helped my communication skills and makes me enjoy my work. The user experience and design team are also great to work with and I have learnt so much since joining.

Advice — UX product design is all about designing for the end user, so it is important that the designer understands the users' needs and is an advocate for the users. The role involves a lot of communication with users and business stakeholders so having great communication skills helps. It is also key to understanding business processes in order to design a product that works well for the users and also the business.

Skills/Personality — As a user experience designer you need to be comfortable asking questions and being open to learn new things and take peoples feedback on-board, we are a very collaborative team and also work very closely with developers, so taking all that feedback is important.

Laura Sloan

Senior Financial Consultant
Allstate Northern Ireland

Role — I have been on the Allstate NI ATSV Finance team for over five years and recently became the team lead. ATSV Finance is the financial governance arm of ATSV with the primary responsibility for reporting, forecasting, planning and optimizing technology and operational investments at Allstate. My role involves managing the expenses for a Director in IS, I also have experience reporting data center expenses, managing the enterprise print expenses, monitoring the monthly data center usage for each platform and the expense allocations process for the data center.

Background/experience — I graduated from Queen's University Belfast with a Bsc in Finance. While studying for my degree I undertook a placement year and when I graduated worked for just under three years on actuarial valuations.

Positives — Finance expense management allows the ATSV Leaders to make better business decisions and optimize technology though the reporting, forecasting and planning process. Working on the ATSV Finance team provides opportunity for individuals to work with people across the enterprise, it also allows individuals to harness their technical and analytical skills.

Advice — Ask questions, look for process improvements and understand the basics to better explain the data to those unfamiliar with how finance's work.

Skills/Personality — Strong analytical thinking, financial acumen, mathematical ability, team work and strong excel skills are required for the role. Effective communication skills to explain financial information in a clear and concise manor and consulting skills to work with non-financial internal clients to help them understand their expenses

Brian Lecky

Cyber Security Risk Assessor
Allstate Northern Ireland

Role — The Risk Assessor role is about working with business and application teams to assist them to identify opportunities for improvement in their Cyber Security posture. I then work in collaboration with those teams to provide actionable and pragmatic recommendations based on cost benefit analysis.

Background/experience — I studied a Law degree for undergraduate and have a Masters degree in International relations. I started working in the world of risk management in 2006 and over the last 12 years have worked across 3 continents for 4 multinational financial services, retail and insurance companies.

Positives — My role lets me interact with multiple different teams from right across the company. There is genuinely an opportunity to learn something new every day as I regularly get assigned to work with teams I have no previous interactions with. Each team I work with presents a unique perspective around the inner workings of Allstate and this helps keeps the role fresh and challenging. There is also an opportunity to educate the business on good Cyber hygiene and how important that is to how we operate as a business.

Advice — Stay open to change. Learn how to actively listen to what is being said and try to distil the key messages in a succinct fashion. The role involves a lot of communication with a myriad of people so try and view things from their perspective and remain open to all and every learning opportunity.

Skills/Personality — This role would suit people who enjoy communicating and interacting with a diverse range of people on the topic of cyber security. It is important to develop an adaptive and pragmatic approach and maintain a curious and enquiring mind.

ECC Monitor: OK