Tech Trailblazers

Tech Trailblazers: Carla Conway

  • Name: Carla Conway

    Role: Operations Service Manager, Kainos

    Biography:

    I attended Queen’s University Belfast and graduated in 2012 with a 2:1 BSc degree in Computing Information Technology. I first started out as a support technician before moving into a support engineer role. I was then giving the opportunity to develop my skills in software testing and this lead me into a role as a QA Engineer in 2015.

    From then I’ve had a real interest in software testing and project managing, seeing an opportunity in Kainos to join the Smart team, I knew this role would tick the boxes for what I was looking for. After successfully joining Kainos in 2018 and taking advantage of the many opportunities, within 12 months I became Operations Service Manager and have continued to thrive in this role.

    What does your typical day look like?

    As a ‘gold team’ manager, a typical working day for me is ensuring my team are focused and have a comfortable workload. If any issues arise during the day, I will liaise with the gold support engineer on my team and the customer success manager assigned to that customer, together we will work out a plan of action to resolve the issue. I also have two customers which I test and report on each week, therefore a Monday/Tuesday for me would be spent analysing test results and reporting back. Wednesday-Friday I could be investigating issues, joining customer calls and meeting with management to prioritise and plan the weeks ahead.

    What are you currently working on?

    I am currently working in the Smart Gold Service team whereby we perform regression testing on behalf of the customer using our Smart automation tool to test their Workday tenants. With a team of 9, I ensure customer reports and issues are sent in a timely manner, weekly maintenance is being carried out, customer calls are productive and where required escalations are being handled.

    What inspired you to join this company in particular?

    I was inspired to join Kainos as I had heard so much about the culture within the company, how collaborative and forthcoming employees are within the business. It is also a fast-paced company with many opportunities, and it was the role within the Workday business unit, which intrigued me to join as I knew there would be so much learning, movement and opportunities available to me!

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

    When studying my A-levels I always thought I would become a music teacher although I quickly learned as I entered my finals that my stronger subject was IT and the industry was booming with jobs so I decided to take up a degree in Computing Information Technology.

    What’s your favourite part about your work?

    The team and helping them grow. Within the gold service we have a fairly young team of graduates. More recently we had a number promoted to Associate level and it was great to be apart of that process and seeing them grow over the course of the year. We have such a great team not only in the gold service but overall in Smart. Anybody would do anything to help you out, it’s a great culture with an energetic vibe.

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

    The tech industry never stops, it’s a growing career opportunity and I would advise anyone thinking about it to go for it. You don’t have to be the most technical person in the world to work in technology, there are so many roles out there to suit all skills and abilities.

    How do you see this technology impacting on our lives?

    I see technology taking over our lives and everything becoming digitalized, this is already happening. Technology in the form of social media is also having a detrimental effect on people’s mental health, especially young people, as it is overused in some respects. Although I do think technology has a positive impact on our lives, my uncle suffers from muscular dystrophy and relies on home care. Recently he purchased a google home and this now allows him to make calls, watch tv etc. without waiting on someone to come into the room.

    Who inspired you to work in this field?

    I was inspired by a friend who was also working in the field and introduced me to the idea of working in IT.

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

    Artificial Intelligence

    What tech gadget could you not live without?

    My phone as I use this for work and home to organize my life, take notes, keep in touch with people etc.

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