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Oliver Stadon
Head of Risk Management
Home Office

There is no other role I would do; I’ve fallen in love with risk.

I began career as a “summer casual” in the Ministry of Defence after leaving university. I ended up staying in the MoD – in Defence Equipment & Support – for 17 years, until February 2020.

A highlight of that time was being in Afghanistan for seven months, and witnessing in real-time the net impact of my previous roles in DE&S. My experience on the ground also helped with those tricky negotiations with the Treasury back in London.

A photo of Oliver Stadon – Head of Risk Management, Home Office

I remember a time when I was leading a commercial team and, during one meeting, managed to secure additional funding for the United Kingdom’s operations in Afghanistan. I brandished a piece of body armor with a bullet hole in it to say: ‘Look, this is why we need the money. This is the difference it makes. This serviceman’s life was saved because he didn’t have critical injuries.’

It was during this time that I began to really engage with the idea that risk management helps you prepare for things going awry. You can’t plan the future, no one has a crystal ball. But you can think about scenarios upstream: sometimes, there can be one thing that goes wrong that ruins the whole plan.

I am currently working in the Home Office as head of risk management . I am based in the corporate centre, leading risk management teams and setting policy processes while looking at the big risks facing the department.

My focus is setting a standard for what good risk management looks like across the Home Office, and to foster a culture where people integrate risk prevention into their everyday working practices.