In honor of Get To Know Your Customers Day, we sat down with one of our customers, Sally Bogg of Leeds Beckett University (LBU), to get her thoughts, aspirations, and insights into her daily life as one of Ivanti’s favorite women in tech.
Our Q&A session revealed some interesting facts about Sally, including her desire for more women in tech.
How long have you been working at Ivanti?
I have been directly involved with Ivanti since I joined LBU in December 2015. However, when I previously worked at the University of Leeds, HEAT was our ITSM tool for many years. So I guess you could say I have been working with Ivanti in various forms for the past 10 years.
How would you describe Ivanti?
Forward-thinking, customer-focused, sector-leading, and exciting.
How did you get into ITSM?
I graduated from Leeds Beckett University in 2006 with a degree in computing (database systems), but I knew that I wanted to work in education.
In October 2006, I successfully applied for an admin role in the IT department at the University of Leeds where I was responsible for managing the relationships with some of our third-party telecommunication companies. I got involved in service reporting and service level management, and then a number of service issues resulted in the implementation of a Continual Service Improvement Plan.
This introduction to service management really sparked my interest and I started reading up on ITIL. Eighteen months later, the department created a new job posting for an incident manager. This was the first ITIL process role within the department. I applied and was successful, taking both my ITIL V2 Foundation, and ITIL V2 Practitioner Incident and Service Desk certifications in the first two months of my new job.
Although I had gone to school for a technical degree, I found that I was much more interested in the service and support elements of IT. Having previously worked in retail, I have always been really passionate about customer service, so I found that ITIL played to my strengths.
I am so passionate about it that I completed a masters in IT Service Management in 2013. I am also excited to see where ITSM is going, and really want to see the focus move away from process to people.
Tell us about Women in Tech and how you’re involved.
I have worked in IT for the last 11 years in the higher education sector, and I have always been really struck by the lack of women in tech. My experience at University was similar. Out of a cohort of 200, there were fewer than a dozen female students—and I was probably the only one who had kids.
It often felt quite intimidating walking into a lecture theatre that was full of men. It is such a fantastic sector to work in and there are so many opportunities. I want to make sure these opportunities are open to everyone.
Diversity in the workplace is really important, and a key element to that is ensuring that women are well represented in the tech workforce. I regularly use social media to promote events and engage in lively debates around women in tech. I am currently working on creating a Women in IT networking event for UCISA, and as a conference organizer, I always ensure there is strong representation from women. I am also a supporter of Tech Mums.
Any pearls of wisdom to offer young women who want to get into tech?
Be brave, speak up, and don’t be afraid to take a few risks along the way. Find an advocate, someone that will mentor and support you. Don’t wait for opportunities to come knocking—go out and look for them. Joining organizations or committees is a great way to build a strong network and enhance your skills and experience.
Take advantage of social media (particularly Twitter and LinkedIn) to promote yourself and raise your profile. Women in tech can’t afford to be modest!
Do you have a favorite mantra/saying? Someone you look up to?
Dr. Sue Black is my absolute hero. She is such a fantastic role model for young women from under privileged backgrounds and she is so passionate about education. She was involved in saving Bletchley Park and has set up an amazing organization called Tech Mums which aims to empower mums, their families, and their communities with technology.
I am also a huge fan of Dr. Suess and often use quotes from his book in presentations, my favorite is: “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better, it’s not.”