I’m used to being the only girl in the room; it started in school when I was the only girl studying physics A-Level and continued into university where I studied civil engineering.
Following university, I joined the army where I predominantly worked in a male-dominated environment. During my time in the army, I had an IT Project Manager role for two years; I really enjoyed my time in the role and this influenced my second career. I learned a lot in the army, but after 18 years I had achieved everything I wanted to and needed a change.
When I first started looking at how to transition into a career in IT, the options were limited; go back to university and do a computing degree, work as a project manager, train to be a network engineer or in cybersecurity. None of these options appealed to me so I took a year out to re-evaluate my options. During that time I found out about the Amazon Web Services re:Start programme, which was more aligned with what I wanted to do. I signed up, and with the support of my family, I commuted daily to Manchester to attend the four weeks of training.
Part of the programme gives potential employers the chance to speak to delegates about opportunities available within their business – this is how I found out about the Technical Analyst role here at the NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA).
The NHSBSA looked at my overall skill set, my drive, determination and willingness to learn and – despite my limited technical experience – took a chance on me.
They supported me through the application process, advising on the format and level of detail required for the application form. They also guided me through the interview process. I was fortunate to be successful and started working here in March 2018.
I would like to encourage other women to look at roles in the IT sector. There are so many different roles available that don’t necessarily require you to be a technical expert; you just need an interest in the field and a willingness to learn.
The NHSBSA is passionate about creating a diverse and inclusive workforce that reflects the diversity of our customers. Make sure you take a look at some of the IT roles we current have available!
There are more women involved in the IT sector than ever before and there are some amazing female role models in some very high profile jobs; they’ve paved the way for those coming behind them.