In our continued pursuit to trailblaze in the audit world, we’ve recently onboarded a seasoned B2B product leader as part of Team Pillar; to power the next phase of growth of our market-leading GRC platform.
So tell us a bit about yourself, Mat!
Hey, I’m Mat 👋 I’ve been working in product-related functions for close to a decade now, and most recently have been building and running the product team at LMG, Australasia’s largest mortgage aggregator. During my five years there, I grew the team from one product manager to a team of 15, and our user count went from ~1,500 to ~8,500!
Prior to that, I worked for American Express and Flight Centre Travel Group in product and development roles. I’m based in Australia, but spent six years living and working in the UK. My background has delivered a vast range of experiences in heavily regulated environments, which definitely helps when pivoting into the governance, risk and compliance space.
What is it that you love about working in product?
I think it’s always good to help define “What is Product” as I get this question a lot from friends and family. I describe Product as the sweet spot between solving a real pain point for a customer that they’re willing to pay someone to fix, and making that solution viable for a product and services business to deliver on, like Pillar. When we get this right, we create a fair exchange of value. So, back to the question; what I love most about product is getting to speak to real-life customers regularly and often, empathise with their problems, and ultimately deliver something that changes the way they work.
What attracted you to the AssuranceLab team and Pillar specifically?
Obviously the people at AssuranceLab and Pillar had a big part to play in my decision to join the team, but my key driver was the size of opportunity I could see for Pillar to grow in the GRC space. What the team had already built was innovative, and exemplified our values of trailblazing the unknown path. Their customer-centric approach was evident in the Pillar you experience today, and I know that with my experience, we can even further harness this to appeal to a wider audience and help save our AssuranceLab customers time in sharing a snapshot of their trust status with others.
How has the first month on the job been?
Like any new role, it’s been a dive into the deep end. I used to think that mortgage broking and travel were industries synonymous with abbreviations and terminology, but I think audit might take the cake! There’s a vast array of terminology and processes that I’ve been learning over the first month, which I’ve then been connecting the dots with how Pillar turns that into a system-based approach. It’s been eye-opening and has further cemented my belief that Pillar is an innovative product poised to take its next great leap forward.
How would you describe Pillar to a non-user?
Pillar is the conduit between two or more businesses who need to trust one-another, and the independent audit firm who will validate that trust. We help audit firms, like AssuranceLab, create assessments to help understand the current posture of businesses, and help them become compliant with international standards like SOC 2 and ISO 27001. We’re then able to generate industry trusted documentation to share with other businesses as the foundation of a trusted ongoing relationship.
Can you give us a glimpse into what the future looks like for Pillar?
Of course! Now, we have many plans, but some of them may be more crystal ball than blueprint. Here are some things I think our users will love to hear are on the way:
- We’re simplifying the way clients are invited to Pillar to make it easier for your auditor to invite you into new standards, to review your progress in your assessment, and cut down on unnecessary pages as a client when onboarding. We expect this to make your first Pillar experience a delightful one.
- Notifications! We know - it’s really important to get alerted to things being assigned, updated, changed, etc in the platform. We’re excited to deliver this one but want to make sure that all of our users have control over what they receive and when.
- Sometimes it’s not easy to know where to focus in Pillar, so we’re making it really clear with counts and improvements to dashboards to point out what needs your attention ASAP when logging into Pillar.
- Longer term:
- We know there are some excellent tools out there that make evidence capture super easy, especially for tech companies. We’re keen to help make it easier to use those tools as part of your audit to save time and minimise duplication.
- We’re thinking through how we bridge the gap between businesses who are being audited, with those who want to see the audit outcome. How can we help cement that trust further?
How can folks help you with the Pillar mission right now?
I love to hear feedback - it’s what powers our roadmap. If you’re a client of AssuranceLab, your audit services team is all ears and can pass on any feedback you have on Pillar to me, or better yet, we can always set up a time to chat. If you’re an auditor or audit firm that wants to learn more, I would really love to chat so feel free to Contact Us and ask for me.