Why we’ve partnered with WiD UK 2019

We’re proud to be a company that encourages colleagues to be themselves. We believe diversity of thinking and different perspectives strengthen the way we work and make us successful.

After participating in WID 2018 we are delighted to once again be partnering with the influential movement in 2019. We are looking forward to delivering our workshops at the event and sharing our approaches to developing our inclusive culture that allows all of our colleagues to be who they are and thrive.

Helen Edwards LR(1)

Name: Helen Edwards

Job Title: Actuarial Modelling Manager

I am the manager of the Actuarial Modelling team at Hastings Direct and have nine years of experience working primarily in pricing within the general insurance industry. I attained a first-class honours degree in Mathematics whilst working full time and I am currently studying the actuarial exams as a member of the IFoA (Institute and Faculty of Actuaries).

I have always loved learning new things and discovered my passion for statistics at College. Data has been a big part of my working life since I first started as an MI Analyst producing reports for management. I am now managing a team whose primary focus is building statistical models and I enjoy finding the unexpected within our data.

I live by the beautiful sunny seaside in Eastbourne.

women in data- Lorraine Allchin

Name: Lorraine Allchin

Job Title: Senior Data Scientist

Expertise: Predictive Modelling and Pricing

Education: DPhil in Genomic Medicine and Statistics, University of Oxford

I have always had a passion for mathematics. It uncovers how everything works and is the perfect lens to understand, well… life, the universe and everything. My enthusiasm for learning drove me to complete a DPhil (Doctor in Philosophy) in Genomic Medicine and Statistics at the University of Oxford, which had been a childhood dream.  When I decided to leave the academic world, I spent two years at RiskFirst developing analytics for Direct Benefit Pension Schemes before moving to Hastings Direct in 2015.

At Hastings, I began in Retail Pricing, where I worked to develop innovative new pricing methodologies for both Home and Car as a predictive modelling expert. After a few years I moved to the Underwriting function of the business and as a Senior Data Scientist now focus on risk quantification utilising cutting edge machine learning and supporting best claims practice. When I first joined Hastings I was the only female member of the pricing team. Being a champion of inclusion and knowing first-hand the importance of diversity in data especially, I have worked to help improve the diversity of the analytical teams in the business, be a mentor and role-model to other women in the fields and be part in our Gender Diversity Forum.

It can be disheartening when we advertise a new role and receive CVs from a male dominated pool of applicants.  If girls continue to look at top businesses and see tech roles as something that men do, many of them will continue to miss out on opportunities to work in this rewarding field.  We all know that algorithms reflect the biases of their designers, through the data on which they are trained.  Improved diversity within the field allows us to challenge these biases and work to deliver solutions that benefit our customers and our companies.  This is why events such as Women in Data are so vitally important to the future of data analytics and I am so pleased that Hastings Direct is once again sponsoring this initiative.

“Our ongoing investment in data and digital capability is at the core of the company’s ability to operate efficiently and effectively”

How Hastings Direct see the data landscape changing in the UK in the next 5 years

Our business model is built for how customers want to buy and manage their insurance. This supports our ambitious growth plans to become the best and biggest digital insurance provider. Leadership in digital, data and new technology is a vital part of our future and we are investing in a strategic change programme designed to enhance data, pricing and anti-fraud systems to take Hastings to the next level.  Our ongoing investment in data and digital capability is at the core of the company’s ability to operate efficiently and effectively, and our ongoing investment initiatives will support our future growth.

About Hastings Direct

Founded in 1996 in Bexhill-on-Sea, East Sussex, we’re a fast growing, agile, data and digitally focused general insurance provider to the UK market, offering a full range of car, van, bike and home insurance products.