Career Advice

Career Stories: Michael’s Journey into Software Development

John Smith

What is your job about?

As a Software Developer in Macquarie’s Trade Service department, which is part of their corporate division, I work in a team that is tasked with maintaining, customising and supporting a 3rd party platform called Calypso, which serves Front Office, Middle Office and Back Office Functions.

My role is a blend of software development and operations, which is commonly referred to in the industry as DevOps. It bridges the gap between development and operations and exposes me to a variety of different techniques, technologies and experiences from development to deployment and everything in between, in the typical life cycle of a modern software application.

With my background in software engineering and development, I’ve always had a keen interest in technology and in particular, software development.

What is your background?

I was born in a diplomatic family and because of that, I moved quite frequently all my life. I grew up in Morocco, which is where I finished all my primary and secondary education. Then I moved to Malaysia and started a Bachelor’s degree program in Software Engineering. Shortly after graduation, I moved to Canada to further my studies and pursue a Master’s degree in Software Engineering. Finally, I moved to Australia to launch my career and establish myself as Software Developer.

My interest in computers and technology started when I was eight years old and my father bought me my first computer. Shortly after that, when I was 12, he introduced me to programming. I fell in love with it very quickly and I had no doubt in my mind that I will be pursuing a degree and a career in this field.

Could someone with a different background do your job?

Technical skills without a doubt are crucial. But most importantly for someone who is coming from a different background, they need to be fast learners because there is definitely so much to learn regardless of your background.

Communication skills are also quite important. A great deal of my role involves communicating with my teammates as well as other internal clients. You need to communicate effectively whether you are discussing a bug that needs to be fixed, planning an upcoming release or talking to a client about a certain feature.

What was the training like? An image of an f.d.m. consultant standing in front of the Sydney Opera House

The training at FDM was quite intense and exposed us to a lot of technical skills that are crucial in the current industry. It also helped us improve our interpersonal skills and taught us how to work effectively in a team.

What is the coolest thing about your job?

Being genuinely passionate about technology, the coolest thing about my job is the potential to learn new technologies and be exposed to a variety of different technical skills that are highly valuable in the industry.

What are the limitations of your job?

Since this job relies on the use of third party technologies, languages and applications I can sometimes face limitations that are outside of my control.

What are 3 pieces of advice you would give yourself when you were a student?

  1. Don’t limit yourself to what they teach you in class. Go the extra mile!
  2. Work on personal projects or participate in open source projects. It will help you hone your skills and it will look good on your resume.
  3. Don’t be afraid to ask questions.

Keen to start a career in software development? FDM could be the next step you need.

Read more about life at FDM: