Alicja

Tell us about your experience?

For the last 10 years I’ve been building my career in Finance, I studied a 4 year Finance and Accounting degree at Salford University with a short gap in the third year to have my first daughter, I went on to finish my course with a 2:1 and then over the years to complete my Chartered Management Accountancy exams which I successfully passed in 2015. I recently completed a Tech Returners course and want to merge the knowledge I’ve gained from the course and my finance work experience into a Tech career. My current Finance contract ends on the 31st of March and I’m ready to venture onto the next challenge.

Tell us about your technical skills?

had dabbled in doing some Freecode camp learning online and was interested to learn more about programming. I went on to do a course with Tech Returners in November 2019, most of the subjects and methodologies were new to me but I’m proud of what I have learnt and achieved in such a short period of time whilst working a full-time job with 3 children in tow. I’ve got to learn how to build a stack application using HTML, CSS, Javascript, React, NodeJS, AWS (Lambda and RDS), MySQL and Serverless. The biggest challenge was the pace as I was learning a new topic each week. I completed weekly Javascript challenges which I quite enjoyed as I like solving problems. I also learnt about TDD and agile work methodologies. One of the final challenges was to build a full stack application in 2 weeks in a team of 3 and present in front of professionals. This was an exciting project and relied on organisational and leadership skills to make decisions, prioritise and map out how to divide the workload, how to build the app, use GIT version control and peer review changes. It was my first experience using Slack and Trello but I found them very intuitive and excellent communication tools.

Transferable Skills

Having worked in Finance I have learnt to prioritise and organise my work in order to reach deadlines for month-end reporting and HMRC submissions. I have to be very analytical and logical about comparing data including when investigating variances to historical data, budget and forecasts. I have had to prepare for the future with Cash Flow forecasts and looking at targets by looking into KPI’s. I have had to communicate across levels, including directors at board meetings to other stakeholders within and outside the business, some who may not understand finance lingo. I’m familiar with using different finance systems and being involved with UAT training, using spreadsheets and formulas daily. I try to improve processes to save time and improve accuracy by using Excel formulas and making upload templates.

Tell us why you are passionate about a career in tech?

My main career aspiration is to combine my tech and finance journey into a Product Owner, Data Analyst or Finance Software Engineer role. I’ve been interested in Tech for a couple of years but finding the time to learn more about it was difficult. I saw the Tech Returners course at Booking.com being advertised and I thought this is finally my opportunity to make that transition. Tech interests me because it’s always evolving, there is always something new to learn or a new product or feature being released. During the Tech Returners course I began attending code meetup groups and found it such a friendly community, the mentors and other learners are so supportive and encouraging. I was never taught coding at school and I really wish I’d known and had exposure to it earlier in life but better to start now than never.