Code First: Girls have partnered with London’s division of the worlds largest Women in Technology event series, Women of Silicon Roundabout to be held on June 25-26 in London. We spoke with Simi Awokoya, a Technical Evangelist at Microsoft and the Founder of Witty Careers about what she is excited to be presenting at this years event!
After 5 years of being a developer, I joined Microsoft as a Technical Evangelist where my role involves working with a range of companies across different sectors to build impactful solutions on Microsoft’s AI platform. I spend a lot of my time working with engineering teams so my previous experience as a developer is invaluable. I love my job because I get to work on bleeding edge technology and no two days are the same!
Technology is dictating the direction of the future. It is the core driver for multiple industries, it is disrupting traditional ways of running businesses and improving life as we know it. With this high demand for impact, technology decision makers(builders and strategists) need to be representative of the users they serve. I can think of so many examples of applications I’ve used that were not made with different genders, races or disabilities in mind. Most user experience fails are down to not having diverse teams.
Diverse teams build the best products and solutions and it’s important to ensure female Tech leaders have a seat at the table to create the impact we want to see.
My top tip for any woman looking to start a career in Tech is to invest in your career development. The Tech industry and Tech trends are constantly changing, and even with being a couple of years in, I have to take ownership of my career and take time out to learn and improve my skills. A quick win for anyone interested in finding out about the Tech industry, is to attend Tech meetups/presentations/startup pitches that showcase a job role or technology you’re interested in learning about. After doing that, make sure you network! With potential mentors and also laterally with your peers at conferences like Women of Silicon Roundabout. There is so much value in building a community of people you can learn from!
I’m the founder of an organisation called Witty Careers. Witty Careers equips women from Black and Minority Ethnic(BME) backgrounds with the skills to succeed in the Technology industry. Women are underrepresented in the UK Tech sector and BME women even more so. Early on in my career, I noticed there were no communities focussed on giving women that looked like me the practical skills to get a start in the industry- so I decided to start one myself. Witty Careers is run by a team of women working across UK Tech companies and we run quarterly programmes for women and young people interested in starting careers in Technology. We are also a community for existing Women in Technology to learn, grow and pay it forward.
Want to find out more about other speakers? Head to Women in Technology website.
Code First: Girls