Interviews

Emma McGuirk: Mixing business with tech

  • Emma McGuirk has worked as a technology consultant with PwC NI for nearly a year. During that time, she has met other PwC employees from around the UK and has travelled to London a lot for work.

    However, Emma's background is in business management. As PwC is now hiring for more graduate tech consultants, Sync NI caught up with Emma to discuss how she got into the technology world and whether having a non-tech related education has held her back in any way.

    -         Did you ever think about a career in tech before joining PwC? 

    I always had an interest in technology; however I also enjoyed more theoretical subjects which led me to study business management in Queens. I also completed a placement year in a tech firm which confirmed my interest to work in the industry. I now enjoy the balance between tech work and project management support. 

    -          When you were in university, did you think that having a non-STEM degree would be a barrier in breaking into the tech industry?

    Yes, I debated with myself over studying a tech degree, a business degree or a combination of both. My limited technical knowledge at the time resulted in my choice of business. When looking at graduate jobs I reluctantly applied to tech roles, as I was of the opinion that I wouldn't be able to work in the industry without a STEM subject. This has proven to not be the case in PwC. Often my business background proves extremely useful and I received tech training at the beginning of my career as well as continued support from my team - all you need is the right attitude and a want to learn. 

    RELATED: What does a tech consultant do?

    -          What made you want to join PwC initially?

    PwC always had a huge presence on campus at Queen's University and therefore was always an option for me as I really respected the firm and its brand. After attending several career events and speaking to PwC employees, I believed it would be the firm that I want to be a part of. 

    -          Do you have any proudest achievements to date or a favourite part about being a tech consultant?

    As cliché as it sounds, my favourite part about being a tech consultant is the variety of the role and the people I have met along the way. There is not a dull day in the tech consulting world and I am constantly learning new things and been given the opportunity to learn.

    RELATED: PwC NI's Paula Murnin: 'I had no experience in tech, but immediately I felt at home'

    Find out more about PwC NI's graduate tech consulting role and how to apply here.

    About the author

    Niamh is a Sync NI writer with a previous background of working in FinTech and financial crime. She has a special interest in sports and emerging technologies. To connect with Niamh, feel free to send her an email or connect on Twitter.

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