Working in a professional environment with high achievers inspired me to try and become one myself..
More about Jag
It's never too late to achieve success!
Jag came through to NTU by completing a BTEC National Diploma for IT Practitioners, gaining a triple distinction .
"With no exams and pure coursework, there was far less pressure. I did get the best grade possible."
Placement job title: IT Engineer
Placement employer: Schlumberger
Doing a work placement gave Jag the focus and motivation to achieve higher grades in his degree, graduating with a 2.1 in BSc Computer System (Forensics and Security).
"After struggling through the first year with a third, followed by a 2.2 in the second year, it was only after my placement that I managed to produce the work worthy of a 2.1. Working in a professional environment with high achievers inspired me to try and become one myself. After my placement I started my final year with fresh focus and determination. In my first piece of coursework of the year, I achieved above 70% for the first time in my academic career - this gave me much needed confidence to believe I was capable."
Current job title: SAP Technical Analyst
Current employer: Centiq Ltd
Day to day activities: I work for a consultancy in Nottingham that works with blue-chip customers running SAP. To run this 'SAP' software it requires a premium platform (high-end servers, storage and networking). My job is to help look after that platform, so the mission critical SAP system running on top of that can continue 24/7. I also get involved in project work where businesses are continuously adapting to fresh requirements, which usually filters down to the way their IT systems work.
Why did you choose your current job? I've always wanted to understand both technical and business aspects. My job is technical, forever changing and it's working on some of the most critical systems blue-chip businesses rely on. When there is a major issue, it comes with a lot of pressure - those are my favourite moments. I'm genuinely passionate about the SAP-HANA platform and the problems it solves for businesses. I've had a great deal of exposure to business continuity when things have gone wrong.
What do you enjoy most about your job? I enjoy solving problems and the challenges that can be associated with them - there are always customer IT problems to solve where I work. I like to be innovating, making use of new technology and coming up with better ways to solve problems. It's imperative to keep up-to-date with the latest technologies, and to do so throughout your career requires genuine love for what you do.
What skills do you need, other than your scientific knowledge? You need a positive mindset and the ability to embrace challenges. Manage your time well, make sure you still allow plenty of time to enjoy time with your family and friends. I believe the happier you can be, the more you can develop and grow professionally.
Have you got any advice for students wishing to enter your career? There are so many options when you graduate with a technical degree - your career is definitely not defined at university, it gives you a great foundation that you can build on in whichever direction you like. As a student you will come across many technologies, take moments to delve deeper into challenging areas, even if it's just watching a short YouTube video, something might just inspire you.
Busting a university myth: Degree's are no longer the right choice - incorrect! I still think well-seasoned graduates bring something fresh to a business, as opposed to apprentices that may only learnt what their employer wants to teach them. University allows graduates to grow in whichever direction they want, whilst they build their core skills. When it comes to job hunting, graduates gain great writing skills, ability to work on their own/in a team and are more of a complete package when it comes to finding their first professional job. It also gives students more time to decide on what they really want to do in their life.