Introducing Tara Branigan, a Project Manager in Security

By Tara Branigan

Tara Branigan

Tell us a bit about your role at IBM and what it is like to work within Security at IBM.

I am a Project Manager within Managed Security Services. My role as a project manager requires four key skills that I use on a daily basis: communication, organization, problem solving and persistence. Every client and project is different however these skills are transferable to every situation. A typical day for me involves planning and outlining each client project, working on internal team deliverables, leading and participating in meetings and strategy sessions, and assisting with any issues that may come up.

To me, Security means peace of mind. It means providing not only a product and service to a client, but also a sense of relief and protection.

Working in IBM Security is anything but boring. Every client is different, and every project brings a new team to work with, new challenges, new opportunities, new expectations and new issues in the Security market at large. I am constantly learning and being challenged. It’s also really exciting to be in an industry that is so relevant and important.

Why did you choose IBM over other companies?

IBM is the whole package. The people, the processes, and the career opportunities are unparalleled. There is such a sense of pride and team in the IBM way. I truly feel like I am important and my future is important to the company. My colleagues, managers, and mentors all make IBM feel like home. This is my second time working at IBM. I was hired into IBM out of college and later decided to take an opportunity with a start-up (I figured if I was ever going to take that chance I should do it in my twenties!). I did that for a couple of years and when I got the chance to come back to IBM it was a no brainer.

What would you say is the most exciting thing IBM is doing for Security?

There are a plethora of security providers out there, but they are all in silos. It is extremely exciting that IBM is excelling in every aspect of security and can provide companies with all their security needs…rather than having to work with a large number of companies that need to be both managed individually and as a whole. In addition, the products IBM has developed in house are powerful devices that can change the way our clients view their protection strategies.

Tell me about a time you realized the impact of security, either globally or in your own community.

Security has unfortunately been at the forefront in the past few years and not in a good way. While these data breaches provide relevancy and a need for what we have to offer, it is unnerving to see large corporations being so vulnerable at their customers’ expense. We work with a number of clients who thought they had strong protective walls in place. And while they may have deemed security a priority, the fact that they were breached speaks to the nature of the hacking environment. It is well developed, organized, and responsive to each new protective strategy or service. While we are coming up with new ways to protect, they are coming up with new ways to break in.

What advice would you give to someone thinking of entering the IT industry and more specifically, with an interest in Security?

I would say don’t think twice. It is so exhilarating to be in an area that is doubling in growth each year. It is also rewarding to know that the work we do can literally change the world. We may not always know what the direct outcomes might be if IBM security was not around, but we do know that our clients would be vulnerable without us.


For career opportunities within IBM Security, click here.

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What will you make with IBM?

www.ibm.com/jobs

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