Tech Trailblazers

Tech Trailblazer: Michael McKeown

  • Name: Michael McKeown

    Role: Scrum Master

    Bio: I’m from Newry, Northern Ireland. I am currently working with Core Systems NI after graduating from Queen’s University Belfast with a Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering for Software Engineering.

    What does your typical day look like?

    My day begins with a daily stand-up meeting with the development team in Core Systems NI. I get a roundup of projects that each member of the team will be working on throughout that day. This helps to keep me updated on any new developments. I have several meetings based on our agile methodology and would make a plan for any upcoming projects.  I also take some time during the day to focus on Scrum research to gain more knowledge and see where I can improve my practices. I make myself available to help with any issues the Scrum team have, as it is one of my responsibilities to remove any blockers from holding up their work.

    What are you currently working on?

    Our team in Core Systems NI are currently working to add further functionality to our existing product known as Pathway. I’m also working on creating processes for customer releases and for collating time spent on projects from all members of the Scrum team.

    What inspired you to join this company in particular?

    I was inspired to join Core Systems NI because I have a genuine interest in what they do. They use technology to make life better for people in the criminal justice system. To see technology being used to give people who are at a disadvantage an opportunity to learn and develop digital skills is a wonderful thing. It makes me very proud to be a part of this company.

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

    Yes, from a young age technology was always very interesting to me. I grew up playing several different video game consoles and I think this is where it really started. Going through school, computers, and how they worked, was always an area I was interested in. When I began to make choices that would determine my career, I made the tech industry a priority to explore.  

    What’s your favourite part about your work?

    I would say the team I work with. The people in Core Systems NI are amazing and are all invested in making the company succeed. They have allowed me to build on my skills and have given me opportunities to progress in my role. They have also helped build my confidence by encouraging me to present meetings and demos showcasing our products.

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

    Technology is one of the fastest-growing industries with new innovative ideas continually in progress. It expands into many areas enabling people to have diverse and evolving careers. I would highly recommend a job in technology as it is intertwined with all aspects of our lives. You won’t regret it.

    How do you see this technology impacting our lives?

    It impacts the lives of people in the criminal justice system, who have limited resources or access to technology. Core Systems NI’s products give them the perfect opportunity to develop their personal and digital skills with its easy-to-use solution. This can also help people on probation as they reintegrate into society by preparing them for a technology-driven world.

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

    The advancements in technology in the medical industry in recent years have been nothing short of astounding. The response to Covid-19 has had a huge impact on our lives and I’m sure we are all grateful to those who were able to develop the vaccines for us to fight it. There is also significant progress being made for new treatments and to combat cancer which is all thanks to technology.

    What tech gadget could you not live without?

    I think myself and many others would hate to admit this but I would say my mobile phone. We all use these for so much more than just calls and text messages these days. They are little pocket-sized computers that can do so much for being so small. I am very fortunate to have one because it can be incredibly helpful for so many reasons.

    About the author

    Aoife is a Sync NI writer with a previous background working in print, online and broadcast media. She has a keen interest in all things tech related. To connect with Aoife feel free to send her an email or connect on LinkedIn.

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