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Women in Tech - Simthembile Ford

April 15, 2021

Simthembile Ford,

Business Analyst

 

Can you share a little bit about what it is that you do and what a typical day for you is like?

I work closely with internal stakeholders to elicit business requirements. I spend most of my day documenting requirements, breaking them down into user stories for the development team to start building the software. I also need to be available for the scrum team to provide support and ensure that they understand the requirements as they develop the software. 

 

Did you always know that working in technology was what you wanted to do? How did you decide?

Working in technology was not my first option. I wanted to be a dietician. My aunt arranged for me to shadow one for a week when I was doing my matric. The dietician had to go to the hospital and see a patient that was badly burnt. I could not look at the patient and was almost in tears feeling sad for them.  I realised that I would not be able to handle seeing sick people. IT was the only option available by the time I realised I wanted to study something else. However, it's amazing that I now work for a company that develops software for medical practitioners. It just so happens that I am involved in building software for Allied health professionals, which will support dieticians.

 

What do you think is the best part of being a woman in the tech industry?

The best part of being in tech is the ability to provide profitable solutions for our customers. I use my business analysis skill as a tool to deliver value in the work that I do. On top of that, I take great satisfaction in knowing that my contribution can make someone's business run efficiently.

 

What do you think we should be doing more of to encourage more girls to consider a career in tech?

Young girls need to see more women in tech and have people they relate to. Attending conferences and sharing insights about what working in tech requires would be valuable.

 

What advice would you give to a woman considering a career in the tech industry? What do you wish you had known?

Being in tech is not just about programming or coding. There is more we can do in the tech industry that does not require coding. If you do not enjoy programming,this will not limit you. I would recommend young women to understand what their passion is for tech and go for that.

 

Top skills that anyone, who wants to work in Tech need?

I believe that education and getting qualified in technology is your first step. You are employable when you are certified. Additional skills depend on the route you have chosen in you career in technology.

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