Tech Trailblazers

Tech Trailblazer: Alex Brownrigg

  • What does your typical day look like?

    I spend a good part of my day speaking to clients and managing my projects. I try to get involved with student recruitment and community work as well. I’m about to start a “time to code” initiative with a local primary school where we spend some time showing the kids some basic coding skills.

    What are you currently working on?

    I’m currently working as a Programme Manager, working with one of our clients to procure a new enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution. This will allow them to consolidate the multiple systems they are use, providing significant business transformation which is exciting. Transformation like this can often be challenging for people to embrace, I understand the importance of ensuring that we have a human-centric approach to our work, keeping the people impact at the forefront of what we’re working on. 

    What inspired you to join EY?

    It was EY’s purpose: building a better working world. The work I do means freeing people’s time, creating efficiencies in how they work, and allowing them to focus on higher value work to support their different stakeholders and service users. It was the ability to make this kind of impact that inspired me to join EY.

    Did you always want to work in this industry (tech)?

    I didn’t have a career dream while at university and I fell into the tech industry accidentally when I was helping a friend type out some basic html and JavaScript. My logic loving brain found its happy place, and I completed an IT conversion Programme before joining a local tech firm. I’ve worked my way up to Project and Programme Management via roles in software testing, development and business analysis.

    What’s your favourite part about your work?

    Learning – new businesses, new cultures, new technology, new people. I love to learn.

    What would you say to other people considering a job in this industry?

    Go for it. Technology is a broad field; you can be super specialised or a generalist. If you relish thousands of lines of beautifully scripted code, be a developer. If you want to work with people to leverage technology to deliver their business goals, consider architecture or business analysis. I’ve become more generalised in my role as a programme manager.! There’s so much opportunity!

    Who inspired you to work in your current role?

    I had just started to work in Project Management and was “trying it on for size”. I got the chance to work on a major programme that was business critical and timebound. My Programme Manager was fantastic – he broke the seemingly impossible task into small chunks and shared a compelling vision of what we needed to achieve. It showed me that a great Programme Manager doesn’t just deliver the work, but they lead and inspire. This is what made me want to be a Programme Manager.

    What do you consider to be the most important tech innovation or development in recent years?

    Sometimes the best tech doesn’t have to be high-tech. I’ve worked in digital health and the amazing innovations around remote monitoring and virtual care for patients means that more patients get to stay at home while they receive hospital care. Something as simple as a secure method to transmit data from monitoring devices to a clinical team who can respond and manage treatment while the patient is still at home, can have a major, positive impact on patients who traditionally would be in hospital many times a year.

    What tech gadget could you not live without?

    Can I have two? My phone and headphones. I would miss every appointment/concert/birthday without my phone. And though I don’t have much time to read anymore, I listen to a lot of audiobooks while I’m walking the dog, so they’d have to be included too!

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