We’ve really got an evolving environment in terms of collaboration. We use a lot of different technologies and we’re experimenting with some different facilities layouts to really foster collaboration across and within teams.
We’re looking at new application development and extreme programming kinds of things that, to the outside world, they would say, ‘State Farm – why would they be working on that?’ But that’s a lot of what goes on behind the scenes. So if you even look at the campus that we’ve got here at Corporate South where a lot of development is done – it’s a huge campus.
We do work with lots of very innovative companies, we work on lots of very innovative products, but we tend not to publish our innovations in trade magazines, we tend not to go out and really make a big splash about our technology innovations.
I think an unintended consequence of that is that folks coming out of the IT curriculums with new degrees look at us and they say—if they’re even aware that we’re an option, they think, ‘Wow, they’re probably a boring company that is just out there shuffling insurance papers.’
Well, that couldn’t be further from the truth. We are doing wireless research; we are doing very innovative business intelligence work and data mining because that’s what you have to do to compete in the corporate world in the United States today.
We have a very robust engineering technology lab here at State Farm where we bring in new products and research them.
And we have quite a few people that get the opportunity to work in that lab. It is a lab where if you have a great idea, you can come in and do research in that lab without actually moving to the engineering function. So certainly there are many opportunities to work with new technology if that’s what turns you on.