1. Techno Brain is Africa's leading software provider. For aspiring I.T. professionals reading this, please tell us how you got started working here?
I quit my job as Physics Teacher and Head of Academics in a High School to join a 20 days Career Acceleration Course in Nairobi which trained us on quite a number of aspects that most graduates including myself (then) take for granted. These included mindsets, attitude towards work, life and others, interviewing skills, CV and Cover Letter Writing, Personal Branding, Selling (Self) among others. Most of all they facilitated networking events with major organizations where many HR Leads would meet us to look for talent. I met Sarah Richson in a couple of these forums while she was looking for an intern to join a new department (Learning & Development) which she thought I was a perfect match for due to my teaching experience despite the fact that I am a Physicist. She said, “If you have the right attitude, I will teach you the skills”. It has been a steep learning curve of almost two years starting with a 6 months internship followed by a promotion to head of L&Dsection.
2. Techno Brain has an internship programme right? Please give us some information about this - if a student or fresh graduate wanted to intern with Techno Brain, what is the process?
We pride ourselves in developing talent both for ourselves and for the market to ensure that we minimize poaching of some of the scarcest skills in the market. Our internship program runs for 6 months, guided by an internship Charter. We hire interns with the aim of training them and depending on their performance during the internship they are absorbed in the mainstream employment. If a graduate wishes to join our team they can send in their CV and Cover letter to firstname.lastname@example.org and if their interests match ours we take them on depending on need, space and available resources. At times, we undertake recruitment drives to look for potential talent in colleges and universities from whom we take the best and train for 6 months for the market. As for students who have not completed school, we encourage them to apply for “Attachments” where we engage them depending on their interests and based on if their stay with us adds any value to them as students.
3. What would be your ONE piece of advice to a fresh grad, student or young professional?
As you complete college or university, KINDLY do not think that you got what it takes to join the workforce. What you have is knowledge which is hardly useful if you cannot apply it at work. My boss always says, “Knowledge acquisition is not knowledge application”. Take some key training on elements that your degree leaves out such as how to nail an interview, how to develop a compelling Graduate CV, how to network meaningfully, how to communicate with excellence as a habit, knowing self, and much more that I am sure ProInterns can deliver for you. The sense of entitlement that most of us have as we leave campus is mainly why we tarmac for a long time. As well, remember that you are more than your academics. Tap into your talents and make use of them to build a career. I am a great trainer, speaker and facilitator and that is why I am in the L&D space despite being a Physicist on the other hand.
4. What tips would you give to an aspiring I.T professional that wishes to get into the I.T industry?
This industry never stops. Innovators are in a competition to outdo each other and thus what is new in the morning is old by evening. To survive you must be willing to keep up with the rapid advancement and changes in space. Most importantly you need to be a creator, an innovator yourself.
5. Techno Brain are big on I.T. training, for those that haven't undergone training, what should an individual expect? And how will training benefit them?
Techno Brain is not all about IT only. We have other aspects that support our IT business. We recruit all sorts of people from finance, HR, marketers to sales. Training on IT is your choice and it benefits you based on your careers goals and values.