Hi Sean! Perhaps as we begin, you could tell me a bit about how you got into your role, what was your educational background?
I studied Computer Science at Queens University Belfast. Naturally, when I graduated, I wanted a role in the IT field. After having a job for 2 years, I then decided to go travelling and then upon my return, I began looking for a new job. This was in 2008, so with the recession being in full flow, it was a difficult time economically to secure a role. I did, however, discover Datactics by sheer chance. I came across the role in the Belfast Telegraph, applied for it, and then managed to secure the role – and I’ve been in the data analysis field ever since!
That is amazing, what initially attracted you to the world of technology?
It was very much a tactical move because prior to studying computer science at University I didn’t have any experience in computers, despite having an interest in computers from a young age. I chose computer science because I thought it would a good career move. At the time, computer science was becoming a big thing for Belfast, and as we know, Belfast is very much now a FinTech & RegTech hub.
Looking back, I chose to study Computer Science as I felt it broadened my career prospects and in retrospect. I am glad that I made that choice.
Sean, as you have been in your role for a decade, could you tell me a bit about your biggest passions in your career and beyond?
I enjoy working in a small company because there is the ability to try new things and each week/month/year can look very different. There is no set pattern which means you are constantly learning new things. I have been stimulated by having to strive to keep up with customer demands and as Datactics has stepped into new industries, I have had the opportunity to work on a vast variety of projects.
Recently I have been working with an amazing group of clients; being able to see the client’s needs being understood and met is a big source of satisfaction for me.
What is the biggest shift you’ve seen in the industry and indeed the company?
I have worked with Datactics across many different industries and data domains. Within the company there has been a shift, the workforce has tripled since I started, and it has been growing in all levels ever since. There has been a change in the workplace environment, a sharper focus on different key areas and a lot more opportunities for career development. The colleagues I work with make it both an exciting and aspirational place to work.
What makes you so passionate about your projects, Sean?
In the Government Technology (“GovTech”) role that I am currently involved with, I am finding that as well as it being technically challenging, the work has real world and moral implications meaning it is doing good for society. This type of work that I am doing has the power to impact nationwide plans – and beyond. One of the key things that I love about Datactics is working on projects that are challenging and ultimately, that the benefits are real. There are real-world impacts and that is what keeps me passionate about delivering the best results to our clients and its customers.
Sean, you’ve been at Datactics for 12 years, what do you enjoy most about it?
The continually evolving nature of the role is great but also increasingly challenging. I do, however, love working with the wider team as there is so much talent spread throughout the entire company. The ‘small company’ feel has also been maintained despite substantial growth over the past number of years. One of the best points of working for a Fintech such as Datactics is that your efforts are noticed. In a larger firm, my experience has been that you can often feel like a small cog in a big wheel. In a company this size, I must say that if you do something great it will be noticed but the same happens if you do something wrong too! It drives you on to do the best you can for your colleagues and the company as a whole. This is part of the close-knit territory that comes with working in an innovative firm. I hope that this culture stays within the company ethos and as the company grows from strength to strength, that the camaraderie we all know, and love will stay intact. Here’s to the next 12!