Welcome to our Women in Tech series, a sequence of articles that aim to highlight the wonderful work done by the women involved in the technology behind LetsGetChecked.
This week, we spoke with Lynda O’Leary, our DevOps Engineer. With over 10 years experience in technology, Lynda finds that she is still constantly learning as the tech industry is one that is continuously developing and evolving.
When did you join LetsGetChecked?
I joined LetsGetChecked in April 2020, so I’ve been working here for almost nine months.
What is your role in LetsGetChecked?
My current role is DevOps Engineer.
Tell us a bit about yourself and your role.
My main tasks would be managing our AWS cloud infrastructure, developing automation, and building scalable deployments for our team.
My background is primarily in engineering, I am a graduate of applied languages with computing from the University of Limerick. I started out as a technical writer and then progressed into systems engineering and now the DevOps engineering role.
I suppose I’m in tech now for over 10 years - I probably stopped counting at this stage! The tech industry is a good place to be because you’re continuously learning. There’s always stuff that I don’t know and there’s always new things coming on board which is fun too.
What motivated you to pursue a career in technology?
My degree is in applied languages with computing so originally I was looking into translation kind of work, but my first job was a graduate technical writer role so that kind of got my foot into the tech industry.
From there, I just stuck with the tech industry and one of the reasons I like it is because it’s constantly changing and evolving, and there’s so much room for growth within the industry and so many different career paths that you could go down. It’s an industry that you can experience so much throughout your career.
When I was growing up, you would probably think of working in tech as something that’s boring but when you’re actually working in it, it’s far from boring - it’s a very exciting industry to be in especially when you get to work on new projects or any kind of new technology!
Why did you decide to join LetsGetChecked as opposed to any other organization?
I went to a meet up in Dublin called ‘TechFoundHer’ which was basically a women in tech meetup. Dr. Helen Zidon was speaking at it about her career and how she uses technology in medicine - I thought it was really interesting. There was also another speaker called Aine Kerr and she spoke about how she had worked at Facebook and just now she’s after setting up her own company. When I left, I had the whole startup and health industry idea in my head.
Technical Recruiter, Jamie, then contacted me about LetsGetChecked. I thought it was funny because I thought it seemed like an interesting opportunity to get involved with a health company in a startup environment. During the interview process, the team was very nice. Yeah, I just didn’t see anything that I could say no to, it’s kind of funny how things fall into place!
Wow, it definitely seems like it was actually meant to be somehow! What advice would you give a woman interested in pursuing a career in technology? Anything you wish you had known?
Probably just to try a role within any industry. Like I said before, career paths vary if there are plenty of opportunities. Believe more in yourself, take a risk to try out a new role, try a different career path within your company to see if you can get into the tech side of the house. Just believe that you can do it and invest in yourself.
Is there any particular female leader that you look up to or take inspiration from?
I don’t really have an answer to this. Of course, I’d obviously say my Mom, because that’s what I always say for this question! But, in regards to the tech industry, I like to look at it as a leader shouldn’t have to be male or female. A leader is someone that you learn from and I take that from my past experiences as well because I’ve had plenty of managers - both male and female.
What does the future hold for women in technology?
A lot of prospects. I think with the changes COVID-19 has brought, there’s more room for working from home and I do believe that that will probably change opportunities for women and for families and for progression in careers.
Kids are doing zoom calls now and have their lessons from home as well so there is more of a chance for the younger generation to see the positive effects and benefits of using technology in day to day life.
I do think that COVID-19 has had a positive effect on how career development and career growth within companies will change and hopefully, we’ll see some more female leaders within companies now.