IT career stories and tips on how to get yours started

8.3.2019FranticReading time 5 min

To celebrate this year’s International Women's Day we wanted to share the career stories of our people in the hopes that they may inspire others to consider taking the leap into a career in IT.

In 2018, 47% of all frantimones – 21% of our developers, 70% of our designers, and 63% of our management team – were women, and our team consisted of 10 different nationalities as well. Our professionals come from very diverse backgrounds, which we see as a strength for us as a business.

A leap into the unknown

Life-changing decisions can sometimes feel as difficult as nailing jello to a tree, but they surely are worth it.

Our service designer Katja did some serious soul-searching as a Master of Science in Bioproduct Technology, and decided to follow her heart to a UX Academy which led her to a path in service design. Today Katja is one hardcore service designer doing what she loves - varied work with clients and their end-users by conducting surveys, interviews and workshops, as well as usability testing on prototypes.

Katja’s leaps to the unknown are not over nevertheless, because when she’s not implementing herself at work, Katja likes to challenge herself doing parkour and yoga.

Another example of a complete career change comes from our dauntless designer Onna, who also decided to turn her life around. Onna’s path took her first to San Francisco to study aerial acrobatics, and after graduation she toured around Europe and world performing for 6 whole years. The IT world had always been familiar to Onna, as her dad is an old-school software developer and entrepreneur, but what cemented her true calling was when she took care of her own marketing and web design during the years abroad performing acrobatics.

With interests slowly shifting from circus to design and a desire of having a home instead of moving from country to country led her to where she is today - a brilliant designer here at Frantic. Acrobatics are not forgotten, however, as Onna likes to work on projects outside work, often something acrobatic but it can be something totally different - like learning Vogue dancing and Japanese.

Finding your own path does not always require huge turmoil. Sometimes just a small push into the right direction might be enough, or just an “what’s there to lose?” kind of thought, as happened to junior developer Marissa, who just blindly applied to study IT, and realized that coding was her cup of tea. Or perhaps you’re just looking for the next career move and find yourself in an IT company, like our project manager Laura.

Junior developer Mikaela switched from an administrative role to studying IT, as she felt it would offer her more opportunities career-wise. After nailing down her first front-end developer job, she says: “I finally felt like I had a real job and what is hopefully the start of a career.”

Start anywhere, just start

Go for it. Ask people who are in IT. Connect with others on LinkedIn and ask people to lunch to talk about IT, their careers, your wishes, etc. Go to seminars, events and meetups to learn more. Get into networks on Facebook or Slack. Be brave in applying for jobs, even though you're not sure if you fit the criteria. Just get meeting and get talking.” -Katja, service designer

To evolve further, one must dare to leave the comfort zone. It doesn’t mean that you need to switch from being a swimming instructor to a back-end developer (although we wouldn’t mind if you did), the IT branch has something for everyone. As our sales & HR double-agent Anna says, working in IT doesn't mean that you have to be an engineer, since there are multiple career paths and multiple tasks. Our content designer Piia agrees: “There's no one way to end up in the IT industry, and there are a lot of people from diverse backgrounds doing really cool things.”

“Focus on what you're interested in and enjoy doing, and pursue that”, Piia concludes. Our junior developer Claudia adds, that “in IT you will never be alone, and it’s okay not to know anything when starting - you’ll learn by doing and asking.”

“Equality and diversity come with the package”

How does diversity and equality show at Frantic then? As service designer Katja states, we’ve got a strong culture of inclusivity at Frantic. People here are open and willing to share their knowledge and ideas. We create an environment where people can safely share their opinions and thoughts.

She also thinks that we’ve got a fair and transparent pay grade model that is based on our level of expertise and broadness and depth of our skills - regardless of gender or how many years one has been practicing. Content designer Piia agrees, and says that she feels that at Frantic everyone has a voice and room to grow as a professional, regardless of their age, gender, or background. Our business unit director Katja (who, by the way, writes a children’s book to her own kids in her freetime!) has even had a few people telling her that this is the first workplace they feel they can actually be themselves.

We have people from different nationalities and backgrounds but still everyone is treated equally and these differences are taken into account so that everyone can feel good and safe about coming to work. I think equality and diversity are so natural for us at Frantic that you don't really pay attention to it. They just come with the package.” - Anna, development manager, Sales & HR

So what can we say? We are awesome, but humble about it.

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