Anna, server-side superstar and data analyst, joined us in December 2019. In the first of our regular team Q&As, we learn how she got into fintech, and see how she’s been spending any spare time during lockdown…
I studied genetics but, like a lot of people, I never really made much use of my degree after I graduated. My first job out of university was at the airport in Barcelona, where I’m from. I worked there for two years before wanderlust took over and I moved to Norway, where I worked as a nature guide.
I really enjoyed this but after a while I realised I wanted to settle into a career. Not a job, but something I could commit myself to and grow into over the long term. So I did a two month bootcamp in data analytics back in Barcelona, and shortly after that I came across an opportunity to join Seccl on LinkedIn.
Like lots of modern careers, this is hard! I guess I usually tell people that I help build software that allows people to trade stocks and access savings and pensions options. But, to be honest, most people think I ‘work with computers’, and I’m usually happy to leave it at that!
That’s a bit easier. We’re building products that allow people to do more with their money – and make managing money more affordable and accessible to everybody, not just the wealthy.
I really liked the LinkedIn ad. They said they were open, flexible, happy for people to try new things and learn. And this is exactly what I was looking for. Of course I was sceptical – adverts usually tell you what you want to hear. But having been here for six months, I can say that, for once, the experience has lived up to the hype.
I was given an opportunity based on my attitude and the fact that I love to learn, rather than having the full, required skill set from the start – and that really shows that the company looks beyond CVs to understand the value someone can bring.
I also really enjoy the fact you can work from home (even during the pre-COVID-19 days), and the general approach to flexible working. It’s nice when work can adapt around your life.
Plus the people are really nice, and the atmosphere in the office is great. I’ve missed that during lockdown, but the regular quizzes, meet-ups and cinema nights over Zoom have been a good substitute.
Honestly? I really like it so far as I don’t have to take the bus to work. Which means I can walk my dog, Niko, more (when he’s not sleeping – which is pretty much always). For me, the time I’ve saved on commuting has been a real benefit.
On the other hand, problems are harder to fix without having someone next to you to collaborate with. But everything is working well though.
I’ve also decided I’m going to buy a bike, once I can find somewhere that has any in stock. I think a lot of other people have had the same idea…
And I’ve been working on some side projects, too. One of the things I’m building is a machine learning classifier of exoplanets using data from the Kepler space telescope of ‘things’ in space. I’m modelling this information to tell if the ‘thing’ is an exoplanet or not. I find space fascinating, and think it’s incredible how data can be used to help us better understand it.
Rhymes or JJ. They’re just so dry (and occasionally dark-humoured). I find them ridiculously funny at times.
Sam Rogers. He just knows so much about everything. He’s like an intellectual Swiss army knife. He also lived in Thailand for a while, and I’ve seen The Beach…
That’d be either Stu or Ron. They seem like they’d know how to organise a cool party. In fact, they should both throw one once we can all get together again, so we can find out once and for all.
I’d tell them they’d be able to grow – they’ll learn new skills, get experience in other fields, and will have the flexibility to do this on ‘company time’. This comes from the top – and I’ve never experienced a company that doesn’t just say that, but means it, too.
If you’d like Anna as a colleague (and who wouldn’t?!), we’d love to hear from you. Check out our careers page to see our open roles. And don’t worry if none of them look totally right. Just get in touch with Rebecca at firstname.lastname@example.org – and start the conversation!
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