Diversity in the IT workforce

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I get the feeling some people still think of the bank as a man’s world, a drab and unexciting place to work. In my view, that stereotype hasn’t held true for a very long time, and certainly doesn’t reflect my department – IT International. In fact, more and more women have been joining our IT workforce over the last few years. Plus, thanks to the international nature of my job, I deal with people of different nationalities all the time. So I think it’s fair to say our field of operations is very diverse indeed.

My mathematical background helps me break down the technical needs of the business into a series of logical tasks. Loes Schenkeveld Loes Schenkeveld Business Analyst with IT International

Differences in working culture

At IT International, we provide IT systems to all our offices around the world, which means I'm constantly working with people from all sorts of cultures and nationalities. That mix of people and the international nature of the work make my job all the more interesting and give it a unique dimension. A roll-out in Asia is very different from one in Antwerp, just across the Dutch–Belgian border, for example. Then again, you'd be surprised just how different the working cultures are between Antwerp and Amsterdam!

Interfacing between IT and the business

As a business analyst with Transactions, I serve as a linking pin between IT and the business. I hold discussions with our international offices to determine exactly what it is they want to achieve, and why. I then translate their answers into IT solutions. But to be successful, I have to fully understand the systems we provide. I also need to have a good insight into the client's business. My mathematical background helps me break down the technical needs of the business into a series of logical tasks. It's actually the interchange between these two worlds which makes my job so fulfilling. One morning, I might have a meeting with a developer to discuss the best technical solution for a given office, and then be training an end user that same afternoon.

Developing yourself in all kinds of ways

What I really like about ABN AMRO is that you're given so many opportunities to develop yourself. Only last year, I was involved in a blockchain technology experiment, for instance. There are all sorts of opportunities for development in less technical areas, too. It was so cool being able to take part recently in the Race of the Classics for Young Professionals, a classic sailing boat race. It was the perfect opportunity to get to know other young collegeaus from other departments in a relaxed, informal setting. That's how you build a network of colleagues within the bank whom you wouldn't normally come into contact with. You'd be surprised how fast you get to know one another hoisting the sails or preparing a meal together. It helps you develop a deeper understanding of each other's work, and that's a really positive thing!

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