Paul Hitchenes, Global Service Delivery Leader at Mayborn Group in Cramlington – Northumberland, was born in Gateshead, has lived and worked in the North East his entire life and is passionate in his belief that the region has a lot to offer those just starting out on a career in IT.
Paul comments: “There is an abundance of IT and tech businesses in our region and it is home to some huge players and global brand names.”
“Our geography is also a big bonus. Being close to both the coast and the countryside, combined with the benefits of a lower cost of living versus the likes of London, makes it an incredible place to live, work and bring up a family.”
With an IT career spanning over 20 years, Paul has some wise words to offer those just starting out on their own IT careers.
“As an IT hiring manager the last thing I look at on a CV is qualifications, I’m more interested in your experience – the types of things you’ve accomplished, the projects you’ve worked on, and general commercial understanding. A degree doesn’t hold a lot of value in terms of IT, it may tick an essential box if you’re working in the public sector or within education, but it hasn’t served any real purpose in terms of my own IT career.”
“You have to serve your time; it’s only through doing some of the more mundane jobs that you can build your experience and learn how IT operations work before you can look to move up. A lot of people who have spent six months on a service desk think they should be a Service Desk Manager but don’t have a true understanding of how an operation is set up, what and how you should be using reporting tools for, setup and benefits of telephony systems and stakeholder management.”
“You don’t get promoted by doing the job you are there to do, but by proving you are willing and capable to do more and stretch yourself by volunteering in new areas and on new projects, raising your own profile. Become excellent at what you’re doing first and other opportunities will present themselves.”
“I would also advise that you need to learn when it’s time to leave an organisation. There comes a point when you’ve done all that you can do, and both you and your employer are no longer benefiting. Often people have a fear of looking like they’ve moved around too much, but personally I see that as a good thing. The more experience of different companies and sectors you have can help you to build a bigger picture of what ‘good’ looks like – whether that’s on a service desk, infrastructure, HR or finance, try and get as much experience as you can.”
Whether you’re just starting out in your IT career, or it’s your time to make a change, NRG’s specialist IT and Digital Division can help you make your next move.