Updating Results

Andrew Lean

Andrew studied Bachelor of Computer Science & Technology at the University of Sydney

What's your job about?

I work for DXC as part of the Office of the CTO Team. As a group they are responsible for ensuring we are bringing innovation to all of the industries DXC operates in. As a supporting entity I generally find myself working on various projects for 3 different teams.

Due to my prior experience with Power BI I have worked with the CTO to develop a reporting dashboard to help track what the Australian technologists are working on. This has since expanded to a global effort.

My day to day manager is the Chief Technologist for the Insurance industry. So I have worked on a variety of projects, such as developing API’s, improving our devops processes, and helping configure automated workflows.

Being a part of the CTO Team means there is never a shortage of interesting and high value projects to work on.

What's your background?

I was the middle child of 4 children and growing up we only had access to 1 computer. So I would wake up at 5 or 6 each morning so I could play video games, it was a lot of Age of Empires or Command & Conquer.

Started trying to code after getting deep into designing campaigns for Age of Empires 2. I was fortunate when my Year 10 I.T teacher suggest I attend the 10 day long National Computer Science School at Sydney University. It provided a solid introduction to programming and I got to meet many interesting peers and mentors.

Spent a lot of year 12, teaching other students our course material. This really helped me understand the material and top both Physics and Software Design & Development. Wasn’t sure if I wanted to do computing or teaching at University. Ultimately deciding computing gave me more experience of the real world, which would be valuable if I decided to do teaching later.

Throughout my degree I interned at SSW where I learnt .Net, web development and modern Devops practices. I was also volunteering to mentor 1st year classes, as well as teach high school students via the Compass Program.

Applied for the graduate program for 2017 but didn’t make the cut. Worked as a consultant doing full stack .Net Web Development for a year and reapplied, making it into the 2018 cohort.

Initially I was placed to work as an Associate Developer / Architect, then I was suggested for the CTO Team due to my technical background and focus on teaching. I found it meant I was able to effectively communicate technical concepts which many people find difficult to do.

Could someone with a different background do your job?

Yes, the key thing is to have sufficient technical knowledge to develop solutions for a complete variety of problems. If I don’t know, having the ability to effectively find an answer either by asking my network of peers or by searching.

What's the coolest thing about your job?

I have found I thoroughly enjoy developing & maintaining reports.

The nature of the process means that some of the bugs are due to technical issues, and others are the result misassumptions regarding the systems the data is coming from.

So developing and debugging requires an interesting blend of programming, teaching, art and statistics. As it is all about the psychology to teaching the user to read stories from the report in a consistent and uncluttered manner.

What are the limitations of your job?

I am fortunate within the CTO Team to receive plenty of support, they will also help use their influence to work towards goals if it is agreed my ideas have merit.

Reasonably, I am expected to take occasional calls outside of normal work hours in order to communicate with teams in other regions.

Another aspect would be self-motivation and management, as I need to be proactive in managing my workload. Due to the nature of the work coming from different teams and projects, work can occasionally lull or cascade if I am not constantly managing this and effectively communicating with the teams to manage reasonable expectations.

3 pieces of advice for yourself when you were a student...

  1. Get practical experience while you are still at university. Either by volunteering, interning or part time work. It will help cement what you are learning, provide additional skills and provide great insight into what you want your career path to look like.
  2. Read the book “The Complete Software Developers Career Guide” – covers pretty much everything you should be thinking about in your final year.
  3. Keep in contact with students you enjoyed working with. Aside from the social benefits, they will help push you and open up opportunities and insights in the industry.