This month’s spotlight falls on our new scrum master, Aimee Crawford. Having joined the business in August Aimee is working hard with our tech teams on developing BiP tech and keeping up with the latest developments.
If you caught the knowledge sharing session earlier this year, you’ll have an idea of how she fits into the BiP family – but what does a Scrum Master really involve? And has it got anything to do with rugby?
Thanks for joining me, Aimee, first off:
What does your job as Scrum Master entail
My job is a bit of a mix of things and fortunately for me, doesn’t involve anything to do with rugby! I work to remove any impediments from the development teams, help them become more productive and efficient. Capacity planning and stakeholder management is key. It’s often compared to the work of a Project Manager. However, I’m also responsible for coaching and training in agile ways of working. Ideally, not just in IT, but across the whole business.
What are the biggest challenges you have in your role – how could your colleagues help?
Currently my biggest challenge is learning what is going on in here! I’m still pretty new. I need to learn more about how our products are built and what the future looks like for us. However, that aside, I guess the challenging aspect of this role can often be communicating with stakeholders. Often you have to bridge a gap between the development world and the wider business. I think the best was for colleagues to help is to be open to learning about other people’s roles within our company. A better understanding of what each other do, and what impact it has, will bring people together and communicate better.
What do you like most about your job?
While the communication side of things can be challenging, it is also my favourite part. I like to work with all different areas of the business as well as my team. I also like working with a variety of personalities and finding ways to make them all work together more effectively.
Who/what has had the most positive impact on your career?
This can sometimes be a hard one to talk about, but I truly believe that this is the case…my Dad passing away when I was 18, has and continues to have the greatest positive impact on my career. I am more determined, ambitious and empathetic. I proved to myself some things I didn’t think I was; resilient and brave. It’s given me a different outlook on life and continues to make me want to work hard to achieve my dreams, while not losing who I am.
With IT and software changing before I can comprehend them, what major developments do you think are on the horizon?
I really do feel like anything is possible and things are changing very quickly as you say. Technology has developed extremely fast over the last number of years, and I feel this is only set to increase. Over the next few years, I think there will be greater use of machine learning and artificial intelligence. I also think we will see more companies moving to a distributed infrastructure model and heighten their attention to cyber security.
Achieving a more diverse workforce in some areas, such as tech and construction, has been a priority for government and sectors for a number of years, can you tell me what led to your career in tech?
I was always interested in technology and engineering from a young age. I do think it was heavily influenced by my parents. After university, I was offered a dream job in Woking but I knew I wasn’t quite ready to leave home. So, I looked around at what was booming in central Scotland, with good opportunities and quite literally thought, that sounds interesting, I’ll give it a go. I was fortunate to get the opportunity to try many different roles within the IT/Digital sector and now I’m here!
Are there any changes or initiatives you’d like to implement into BiP?
I’d like to help bring more women into our IT workforce for sure. I’d also like to help the business as a whole move to more agile ways of working and promote knowledge sharing.
What initiatives could make tech a more appealing career for women?
I actually think a lot of perspective starts very early in life. I fortunately grew up knowing I could give anything a go, but many young girls believe maths and other subjects alike, are ‘boys’ subjects. I recently was part of an Empowering Women to Lead Digital Transformation course where we done some primary school level research, and this view really came through. I remember feeling so shocked and disappointed. So, we must let our young women know that nothing is out of their reach! I also believe in showcasing the female talent we have and how they got into their current role, sometimes it’s not a path you would have expected. I think encouraging women to take up a career in tech could be helped with something as simple as talking about and celebrating the women already there.
Quick fire, choose one option:
- Coffee or tea – Tea
- Book or film – Film
- Cat or dog – Dog
- Hot or cold – Hot
- Salty or sweet – Sweet
- Tattooed or not – Not, not brave enough!
- Night out or night in – Night in
- Email or meeting – Meeting
- Teams calls: video or audio? Video