September means it’s National Coding Week once again in the UK. Running this year from September 17th, National Coding Week is a chance to hear from coders around the country, often providing valuable career advice, their journey into coding, tips and success stories. It’s a time to champion those who work in the industry and an opportunity to help inspire others, all helping to tackle the current skills shortage.
Inside the walls of Claritas HQ we’re lucky to have a wealth of talent servicing our clients. Many of whom are wizards in coding, made up of different age groups. Here we speak to one of our Junior Developers, Ryan Shaw, about his interest in coding and his role at Claritas.
When did you first become interested in coding?
It all began in my Information Technology class in secondary school. I was taught basic HTML, a markup language, and CSS, a style sheet language. I acknowledge these two languages as the catalyst for my career in programming. I would spend hours after school coding my own websites, and I taught myself ActionScript, an object-oriented programming language. This enabled me to create my own very basic Flash games to put on my websites for my classmates to enjoy. It was during my school years that my interest in coding became apparent, and I was keen to absorb more technical knowledge. Enrolling at college to further enhance my coding abilities was the next logical step. Whilst there I improved on my HTML and CSS skills, and had exposure to PHP, a server-side scripting language.
Technology and coding had predominantly taken over my life at this stage, and I wanted to continue learning. With a spring in my step, I enrolled at university to continue my studies. Whilst attending university, I was taught several programming and scripting languages, but one of the most memorable for me was VB.NET, which is a multi-paradigm, object-oriented programming language.
Why did you choose a career in I.T.?
Since a young age, I have always been fascinated by computers and emerging technologies. My very first computer had the operating system Windows 95 and I distinctly remember the noise from a dial-up modem. This fascination of tech, coupled with my experience of coding throughout my youth, meant a career in I.T. was highly likely.
What is your career background?
After an interesting and most enjoyable four years of university, I completed my course and graduated with a Masters degree in Computing. I secured a programming position as a Junior Applications Developer, working for an international business process outsourcing and professional services company in the pensions industry. I was responsible for developing, enhancing and designing new pension systems and functionality. I was promoted after two years, and decided nearing the end of my third year to seek pastures new, which led me to the development expertise of Claritas.
What is your role at Claritas?
As a Junior Developer, I am responsible for writing and maintaining web applications and software to meet customer requirements, and producing concise and robust code. The role involves writing, building, testing, implementing and supporting applications using various computer languages and development tools.
What do you enjoy about coding?
There are many things about coding that I find most enjoyable. For one, being able to investigate and solve complex and interesting problems on a regular basis, and the technical and creative process that comes with writing code. Not to mention it is very fun! Finally, it is a great feeling when a newly written piece of code works with no bugs.
What advice do you have for anyone thinking about a career in coding?
Just try it. If you like technology and computers, and you enjoy a challenge and problem-solving that can differ from day-to-day, then give it a go. Personally, it is one of the most enjoyable and fulfilling activities. Being able to do it as a career is the icing on the cake and I wholeheartedly encourage anyone to get involved.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
An interest in coding can grasp you at any age, and if it does, you’ll never be short of a challenge.
A huge thanks to Ryan for his responses to questions. Have they inspired you? We’re always keen to hear from budding coders so why not connect with us on social media? We’re posting about I.T. and tech news, cybersecurity, best practice and a whole host of other topics.