Dot your I and cross your T: Sam Spiro goes back to school to motivate the future of IT

When Sam Spiro (Managing Director at Urban IT Solutions) was invited to a Warrington school to talk about building a career in IT, she jumped at the chance. Having worked her way up from rookie business owner in 2013, to running a successful, Runcorn based IT business today, Sam was keen to share her experience of how to succeed in the world of IT, and also dispel a few myths.

Sam spoke to young adults who were choosing their options for GCSE’s, and their parents. Sam says, ‘Choosing GCSE’s is a tough time for many young people – it can feel like the choices you make at 16/17 years old are going to shape your entire future, and that’s a huge amount of pressure. Add to that the effects of COVID: schools closing and being away from your teachers and peers, and it can feel overwhelming. Young adults need guidance at this time, but also reassurance’.

So, what did Sam say she looks for when recruiting employees into her IT business? It goes without saying that selecting IT subjects, such as GCSE computer science or BTEC ICT, are important but Sam wanted to emphasize that Mathematics and English should still be a focus.  She said that good grades in these topics are the foundation to any successful career, regardless of industry.

During the talk Sam also highlighted the importance of social skills. Sam said that while academic achievements are key, knowing how communicate effectively with colleagues and clients is a skill that will make you stand out in the crowd. Sam says, ‘When two candidates have the same qualifications, it’s often the social skills that make all the difference’.  Qualities such as listening, effective conflict resolution and clear communication are often overlooked, but they’re excellent skills to bring to a career in IT where the need to quickly understand and resolve complex requirements is crucial.

Sam is also a strong advocate of women in IT, an industry which has traditionally been male-dominated. She says, ‘there’s absolutely no reason why women and men can’t both succeed in IT. In fact, women can bring their own set of skills to effectively get to the heart of an IT problem and deliver a tailored solution for clients’.

Sam’s final comments before the bell went were for the young adults to go easy on themselves. She admits this has been a tough year for adults and school-goers alike, so the biggest achievement would be to keep a clear mind, work hard and stay true to what makes you happy. Sam, and all the team at Urban IT Solutions, wish Good Luck to everyone sitting exams!

Urban IT Solutions’ role is the delivery of practical, affordable and tailored IT solutions to small and medium sized businesses across Runcorn, Warrington, the North West and beyond. Get in touch on 0845 363 0404 or contact us here.