My undergraduate degree was in Biological Science at the University of Ulster. My first job after leaving university involved a lot of analysing and storing lab data with spreadsheets and databases – it was an entirely new field for me, but one which I found I thoroughly enjoyed. I realised that there was a lot more that could be done with computers than I was able to do at the time, so I enrolled in a 1 year conversion degree, as I wanted to learn how to apply and use IT systems properly!
I really enjoyed the programming and database aspects of the course, and joined Almac Pharmaceuticals as a software developer not long after gaining my MSc. This was followed by periods of time with Steria Ltd and Parity, before finally joining Covernet.
I was contacted by a recruiter regarding a position with Covernet – I was required to travel quite a bit with the job I had at the time, so was looking for something close by that didn’t need as much away time.
Covernet went out of their way to meet up with me on a Friday afternoon after flying home, which made a great first impression for me. The interview was relaxed, with everyone friendly and enthusiastic, so I had no hesitation accepting when offered the role.
I start the day by checking my emails for any customer queries or system alerts that have come in from close of business, and setting out my “To Do” list for the day. From there we will usually have our morning video call to catch up with everyone.
Most of my time will be spent responding to customer queries, as well as monitoring system issues, and I would also spend a bit of time looking for trends in the queries or issues that are occurring. There are also a number of reports and figures for management that I generate regularly to highlight these trends. I’m also in the process of setting up a knowledgebase to provide a central area for staff to share information, which is a very different challenge to the rest of my work.
I think what I enjoy most is the variation – I’m constantly switching from programming, to database queries, to checking though specifications and data analysis. I also enjoy the problem solving aspect that goes with investigating client issues, as well as getting involved in the various parts of our systems. Every day will have something a bit different!
I think I’ve been lucky in that I’ve worked with a lot of good people, learned a lot from everywhere I’ve worked, and as a result enjoyed what I do.
I used to play rugby, and enjoy / endure watching Ulster and Ireland. I play a bit of guitar, and train in jujitsu to keep in shape. I also do a bit of scuba diving when I get the chance.