30 years ago I was conned into working in IT.
I wanted to be a scientist. I read a lot of science fiction. The Job Centre said it would be working with computers and I immediately thought of Space Odyssey.
I starting as a Data Control Clerk at Coats Viyella. In those days it was called Computing and Computing consisted of a large computer room, housing computers taller than your average person, and pretty noisy due to the tape decks and printers. A Data Control Clerk was the person who dealt with the printouts, decollating, bursting and delivering to departments around the business. Staff didn’t have computers and printers in their desks in those days!
Over the years I’ve has worked in many areas, including as a systems administrator (Unix, Dec, IBM, ICL), an operator, a data centre manager, business analyst, project manager, and programme manager. In the early 90s I was lumbered with looking after an email system at a large University and started to discover a hidden world of Usenet, Gophers and connections around the world. It fascinated me that I could chat with someone in Australia or the USA in realtime.
Around that time some guy had invented some sort of hypertext system that seemed like a clever sort of Gopher, so being a unix admin I liked to tinker so I installed a bit of software and taught myself some HTML, and did a Hello World webpage. Over the next week I tinkered some more and created the first website for Nottingham Trent University. This was before the Internet was readily available to everyone and certainly before business were on the World Wide Web.
The earliest I can find the website on the Wayback Machine is 1997, but this gives an idea of what a good website looked like back then – try clicking here to go back in time!
Since then I’ve worked for some large companies and consultancies:
- Setting up a UK Intranet for Ericsson
- At Capital One, setting up 60 second online decsioning for credit cards, creating a UK Intranet, and leading the analysis for a CRM
- Working a contracted consultant for a while in places like Egg
- Setting up and managing an e-commerce programme for Alliance and Leicester
- Re-launch a B2B website and marketing plans for Punch Taverns
- Returning to Nottingham Trent and managing their online team and online presence which now included social media goodies
My experience with differing companies and industries is vast. I have had large budgets and hardly any budget. so being able to scale a solution to budget and requirements is a key skill.
I set up Quirky Purple in 2012 during a lovely career break and it was a great leveler to try and create a website and associated social media for next to nothing. No big budget required! I did it on a shoestring and it worked.
I’m able to translate techie talk to normal talk and can see the bigger picture to create a solution that’s right for your business and your budget.
I also write lots of articles and blogs, including some for the local newspapers.
You can find me on LinkedIn here – Julie’s LinkedIn Profile