I can see tech changing for the better and becoming more diverse
Alison didn’t initially consider a career in tech, she fell into it. But one thing’s sure: she found a job she loves, and she’s never looked back.
“I remember I wanted to be an engineer when I was at school as I was always interested in making things with my hands and I love understanding how things work, however, when after speaking to people at a careers advice days it seemed like an inaccessible option”.
After completing her AS in business administration, Alison worked for L&G on a business role, but it was clear she was developing interests in other areas of the business. “When I was working for L&G it was clear from discussions with my career manager that I wanted more of a technical role. I was interested in the systems rather than the business”.
L&G required specific qualifications for their tech roles, which Alison needed if she were to pursue her passion. She enrolled on a part-time university foundation degree in IT. Once she completed her studies, she was given a job in the IT department, where she has since had a number of roles including tester, data analyst, developer and a system analyst.
She’s is now a project manager for software delivery at TCS, and loving every minute.
Alison says her successful in her role is down to a knowledge of both the tech and the business. “As I first worked on the business side I can appreciate both sides of the system. Often I work with very highly skilled technical people who know a lot about their area, but are not very good at making it real for the business, similarly the business-focused teams sometimes struggles to get their ideas across to clients. The thing that I most enjoy is being able to bridge the gap between the two”.
Having worked within tech for over 12 years, Alison can see that things are changing in terms of gender equality. She said that when she first joined the tech industry it was very male dominated. “It’s much more ‘normal’ now for girls to be encouraged to become scientists / mathematicians / engineers / technical gurus. I’d like to think that my daughter will not be held back by her gender and she gets the same opportunities as men.”
In the future Alison hopes to become a tech entrepreneur. She has full confidence in herself and encourages others to have faith in their abilities. “You are capable of anything, do your best and don’t be afraid to speak your mind. Don’t worry about what others think, just be yourself and be confident in your abilities”.