Turn On Your Future @ UWTSD's School of Applied Computing

Posts tagged ‘HND’

Graduate Profile: Dafydd Moore @ John Lewis PLC

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What was your undergraduate degree?

BSc (Hons) Web Management

What is your job title and role?
IT Communications and Engagement Manager for John Lewis PLC.  This role involves bringing together key stakeholders from around the business to understand the capabilities of technology and how we can turn it into a strategic advantage for our business.

Could you briefly describe the organisation you work for?
John Lewis Partnership is a multi-site retailer consisting of John Lewis Department stores and Waitrose Supermarkets. It is the UKs largest employee owned business.

Did you complete a foundation degree or HND/C before studying for your degree?
Yes, I completed a HND first then converted this into a BSc.

Where do you find yourself using the skills that you developed in University?
At my time in University I started my development journey in some key skills that I use daily at work.  Critical reasoning, researching and going beyond the obvious to get to the heart of a matter,  meeting deadlines and working in teams were some of the key ones.  If you want to be more of a technical expert you need to work hard to keep these skills current and marketable, view the skills you have been taught as the start of a learning journey that carries on once you complete your formal education.

Do you have a typical day and how would you describe it?
Every day is very different. I have a team of Engagement Managers and Communication Officers.  The Engagement team look after the strategic requirements of the end users ensuring our IT function understands their needs and they are informing our architecture, delivery and service operations teams making sure they are aware what is going on in the business.  I meet with these most mornings and review our service delivery performance.  I will then have various meetings and discussions or site visits to understand where we can make the most difference to our business and how we can manage the value perception of IT.

What aspects of your job do you enjoy most?
I am very fortunate I get to work at the cutting edge of IT and am tasked with understanding new technologies, the impact they may have on our business and how we can use this to be the disruptor in our sector rather than the disrupted.  This can involve supplier visits to companies such as Microsoft, Google and Apple or technology shows such as NRF in New York.

Any tips for someone wanting to develop a career in your sector?
The longer I have worked in IT the more certain I am that people skills will play a more and more important role for those that want to pursue a career in IT.  All the work I do now is very collaborative and stakeholder management is critical.  As you progress through your studies take time to support those around you and understand how the work you are doing might help them…..and have fun it is a great industry to work in!

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Applied Computing Project Exhibition 2014

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Graduate Profile: Thomas John

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What was your HE course/s and when did you graduate?
I studied the HND Computing and Information Systems course, and after graduating from the course, I enrolled on to the 3rd year of the BSc (Hons) Computing and Information Systems course before graduating with a 2:1 Degree.

What is your job title and role?
I am a Software Tester for a company called Dezrez Services Ltd which is based in Swansea.

Could you briefly describe the organization you work for?
Dezrez Services Ltd provides Software Services for Estate Agencies to help the Estate Agencies deal with Sales, Lettings, and also Property Management. The company also offers Support for the Software.  A few products that Dezrez have include:

  • Dezrez PM (Property Management)
  • iPad Valuation App
  • Website in a Box
  • Template Designs
  • Mobile Dezrez

Which skills learned at University are helpful to you in your job?
After graduating from University, some skills have really helped me in my role. With the Assignments and the Final Year Project deadlines, I have learnt how to meet deadlines of Testing Tasks, Testing Activities and Sprints. This has really helped me deal with Testing Tasks and Testing Activities that are set for me. Also my Final Year Project has helped me as I understand the need for Usability within a Software program and how important it is for the Software and for the User.

Do you have a typical day and how would you describe it?
My day would normally involve testing the Property Management software package that Dezrez have developed. I would use TFS (Team Foundation Server) to look at a Task Board to see what Testing Tasks I have been assigned to Test and then I would record any Issues (Functionality, Usability, Compatibility, Design, Spelling/Grammar) or Feature Suggestions in TFS and the Dezrez CRM System.  When a release is performed for new functionality and fixes to go up live, I would perform a Test Plan to make sure that functionality already in place has not been affected by the new functionality.

What aspects of your job do you enjoy most?
I enjoy the challenge of helping the company find issues within the software, helping the company release the software, and that it is suitable and ready for release. I also enjoy working for the company and learning new techniques for testing the products that the company provides.

Do you have any advice for students who are currently studying their HE course?
I would say when an assignment is handed out, start on it as soon as possible. Use the resources that the University provides (library etc.) and the time in which there are no Lectures or Tutorials wisely to do research for assignments, and also take the opportunity to learn some exam preparation techniques. Also if doing a Final Year Project, I would start the Project as soon as you can as I completed my Literature Review at the start of January and that gave me time to make amendments to the sections and also start the Implementation stage early which was really helpful.

In a summary please write a little statement that explains the positive aspects of your experience at University and whether you would recommend it to anyone in the future:
When starting at University, I was a little nervous with the change from College. But the University, the Support, Friends and also the Lecturers made me feel comfortable after a few weeks, I settled in great and worked hard to gain my HND. After gaining the HND, I realised that I wanted to do further education and decided to enrol on the 3rd year of the BSc Degree and it was the best decision I have made. I have made some great friends through my 3 years at the University, and I have also developed myself further as a person through the experience. I recommend the University highly as it a great place to study and I have learnt so much there.

Mini-Video: Career opportunities in Technology

Check out this mini documentary investigating career opportunities in Technology and how to break into the IT industry:

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