Woman in Tech of the Month: Manju Nair

Woman in Tech of the Month is our series exploring the achievements of brilliant women who are building their technology-based careers. This month, we’re excited to have Manju, the winner of our recent Python coding course, as our WiT of the Month. In our interview, Manju spoke to us about her achievements, the skills she learned on the course and her future ambitions.

Tell me a bit about you and what interested you in technology?

I’m currently a stay-at-home mum looking to restart my career in technology now that my children are older and have become more independent. I have always been amazed by what’s possible with technology. Especially recently during the pandemic, technology has helped the world carry on, such as connecting with our colleagues or distant family members – possibilities with technology are endless.

In the past year, I’ve been thinking about returning to work and am upskilling myself by learning from different online platforms.

What did you enjoy about the Python course and how was winning the competition?

I absolutely loved every bit of it, especially being part of a group who were learning together. The best part for me was the group of instructors, they were so knowledgeable, willing to help and always pushed me to do better. It was a brilliant experience for me.

The competition was so fun and motivating, and I was amazed by the different ideas conceptualised from simple briefs. I chose to do a text-based adventure game, but I didn’t want it to be dull, so I focused on putting a lot of visual content in there and extra features to keep it as engaging as possible. For the UI design, my kids were there telling me what they found boring and what worked!

What’s next for you?

Over the past few months, I’ve become more curious about data and would like to pursue a career in this area. The technology landscape is vast, so I’ve picked what I want to specialise in and focused on building my skills through online learning and curated courses, like the PA Python course. Such courses have boosted my confidence and I can see myself progressing and developing. I think it’s important to focus on your aspirations, believe in your ability and be able to showcase what you’ve achieved.

What do you think can be done to encourage more women to get into tech?

In one of my previous roles, I was part of a team of 20 people where I was the only woman. Although the team members were very collaborative, I think having a gender balanced workforce would have created a positive influence and delivered better outcomes. Over the past few years, there has been a lot of awareness around getting more women into technology and the benefits of having a more diverse workforce, which is great. However, it needs to go further than just awareness and into tangible outcomes. Companies should do more to promote diversity as a norm, rather than trying to hit a target, as having a diverse workforce is the way forward.

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