The Bank of England has appointed its fourth CIO in two years months – with interim CIO Nathan Monk picking up where predecessors interim CIO Sushil Saluja, interim CIO Oliver Tweedie and CIO Robert Elsey left off.
The churn is a frustration for partners seeking an influential and consistent point of contact at the central bank – and raises questions about recruitment and retention at this level at the bank, which runs critical national infrastructure settling £750 billion daily on architecture that includes a significant and entrenched legacy technology stack.
Monk (previously at construction firm Travis Perkins) does offer important continuity and understanding on one of the most significant digital transformation programmes at the BoE – the real-time gross settlements (RTGS) rebuild, which he has led technology for since 2018, but a BoE biography shows that his is, again, an interim appointment.
His appointment, which was effective from July 2023 comes as the Bank has failed to settle on permanent CIO since technology leader Robert Elsey left in 2021 after six years, for a role as Group CTO at the Co-op.
The Bank subsequently advertised for an interim CIO in early July 2021. That role was filled for a year by former BoE Head of Digital Platforms Oliver Tweedie, who went on to take up a position as CTO at domain registry Nominet. Tweedie, in turn, was replaced by another interim CIO, Accenture veteran Sushil Saluja, whom Monk has succeeded.
Whether the challenge is the politics, the pay, the extent to which the CIO is treated more as a traditional Head of IT position rather than a "change the business" strategic one, remains something of an open question (talk to us off-the-record on Signal) but relationships – with internal stakeholders as well as technology partners -- are critical at this level and some consistency would no doubt be welcomed in many quarters as the bank continues to make critical and welcome technology changes.