Talking technology with Abarca CIO Serge Perras

Abarca’s modern, fully-integrated technology platform, Darwin, powers everything the company does–from advanced clinical services to financial management to mobile apps for members.

Serge Perras recently joined the company as CIO and is focused on enhancing Darwin to deliver new services and insights and improve healthcare for our clients. Get to know Abarca’s CIO:

What is your role at Abarca?
As the Chief Information Officer, it is my job to oversee Abarca’s technology strategy and operations. My responsibilities fall under three pillars:

  • Overseeing the people across our organization who make delivering our solutions possible. This is my favorite part of the job.
  • Create alignment across our organization around product and technology decisions and investments.
  • Continue to innovate and improve. I believe we have the most advanced platform in the industry, but we are not resting on our laurels. We have an ambitious technology roadmap and we are going to execute it with excellence.

How is Abarca different from places you have previously worked?
Abarca has a handful of distinctive characteristics that attracted me to this role. Chief among them is the company’s strong culture, which has created a unique alignment between people’s individual goals and the company’s mission.

That balance, coupled with creative energy and an open-minded approach across the enterprise, has created a lot of room for innovation. There is endless opportunity to rethink, reinvent, and find ways to improve upon what we do today.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced while at Abarca?
Since the pandemic, changes in the workforce have created challenges in nearly every industry and for nearly every company, Abarca included. But it has also created opportunities. Now more than ever, employees are looking for roles at organizations that they feel aligned with–even if that means going outside of the industry that they have traditionally worked in. This has given us access to a talent pool with experience that we may not have had otherwise, and I believe Abarca’s mission and culture put us in a great position to attract the best employees for our teams.

Tell us about your plans for Abarca’s tech organization.
This initiative is still ongoing, but our goal is to organize our enterprise architecture around two pillars: future-based thinking and quality.

Too often, organizations lose sight of their future planning because they are too focused on day-to-day deliverables. At Abarca, we think there is a better way. We have created a team that is dedicated to planning and working towards our strategic vision for the next 6, 12, 24 months, and beyond. They are keeping their eyes on the horizon to ensure we have everything we need to achieve scalability, adaptability, and maintainability.

We are building stronger partnerships between the technology teams and other departments to make sure that we have a comprehensive vision of what quality means for every part of the organization, and working together to deliver upon it. To us, quality is the most important thing, even when it comes at the expense of speed because we always want to be delivering the best possible product for the clients and members we serve.

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