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REAL ROLE MODEL


Polly Caldwell
Technical Lead
Auto Trader
WHAT DO YOU DO?

I am a Technical Lead at Auto Trader. I work with people from across the business to develop new ideas and figure out how we can make them a reality. Every day is different and there is always a new problem to solve!

WHAT SKILLS DO YOU USE MOST IN YOUR JOB?
  • Problem solving
  • Leadership
  • Logic
  • Creativity
  • Organisation
WHAT'S THE MOST INTERESTING THING YOU'VE WORKED ON IN YOUR CAREER SO FAR?

This is a tough question! I've worked on loads of great things, some really interesting from the tech point of view, like how to make a vehicle appear as if it is located everywhere across the UK simultaneously. Some that are really interesting from the product point of view, like the Reviews product we launched several years ago allowing buyers to read and leave reviews about sellers. Now that I'm a people manager I would have to say this is the most rewarding part of my job.

WHAT'S YOUR EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND?

At school, I studied Maths, English, and Biology to A level, I then went on to study Mathematics at University. During my degree, I did a little bit of programming so decided to look into this further upon graduating. Since working as a developer every day has been a learning day, it's important to utilise the people and resources you have available.

WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO GO INTO DIGITAL & TECH?

I really didn't like computers very much right up until I started working as a developer. The programming I had done as part of my dissertation my supervisor was impressed with and thought I'd picked it up quickly. I started looking into what job roles were available and there were quite a few, with generous salaries. At the time I was torn between development and going into finance. I found the working environment and the people I met when applying for development roles made me feel a lot more comfortable than those of the finance roles; I felt like I could be myself. Eight years later here I still am!

WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO GIRLS THINKING ABOUT A CAREER IN DIGITAL AND TECH?

Go for it! There are so many different roles available within digital and tech, there really is something for everyone. I would suggest people take a look into it, do some research and think about what things you like doing. Coding specifically is a lot of fun and I would encourage anyone reading this to give it a go, but even outside of coding there are loads of great jobs in digital.


I AM...
DETERMINED
PRAGMATIC
CONSCIENTIOUS