Matric results: Perhaps it’s time to democratise how we assign competence

August 11, 2021 in CEO, Events, News, Opportunity, Training and development, Women in Tech

Nyari Samushonga, CEO at WeThinkCode_

Every year when South Africa announces its matric results the country goes into education discourse hyperdrive as analysts, politicians and the civil society attempt to make sense of the numbers. However, in our scurry to project meaning onto the milestone, it’s important to ask whether we are missing an opportunity to democratise how we assign competence, writes Nyari Samushonga, CEO at WeThinkCode_

As always, this year there has been acknowledgement of outstanding achievements in both the government and private school systems, coupled with questions about the national pass rate, bachelor’s pass, subject choices, and much more.

 Make no mistake, the country needs excellence and high achievement in Matric and other academic endeavours should be celebrated. It is right that we value impressive education behind neurosurgeons, legal minds, engineers, mothers, fathers, and more. However, in our milestone mindset, have we begun to shut the door too soon? Is it not a bit extreme to shut off access to future learning opportunities on the basis of how a young person performs on this single test? Are we too rigid in what we communicate to high school leavers about viable options for their futures?

It’s a minefield to traverse. Statistics SA’s unemployment figures have made it abundantly clear that youth unemployment levels are inversely proportional to the level of education. Graduates are the least unemployed, followed by those with some post-matric qualification and then those that just have a matric. Youth who don’t have a matric have statistical odds weighted strongly against them. It is to this woeful backdrop that we have, possibly unselfconsciously, developed an obsession with education milestones – as if they alone will solve our unsustainable and world-topping unemployment rate.

This could not be further from reality. This is perhaps most vividly demonstrated in a series of interactions WeThinkCode_ had recently with various stakeholders in our journey to develop an accredited bachelor’s degree programme, in addition to our accreditation, that we currently offer our students.

A sentiment we continue to encounter is this narrow view of the path one should take from high school to university to the workplace. Any professional will tell you that learning a craft is a lifelong journey and that much of their competence is acquired not in the classroom but on the job. Not just from the lecturer, but also from the many people you collaborate with as you do the work. And yet we continue to insist that a matric result alone is a fair and appropriate proxy for how well or how poorly a teenager will one day perform in a job.

We deem it sufficient to condemn scores of youths to a life of no access to further education. However, if we read that against a reality of only 37% of people that enter the education system passing matric and, worse, only 6% of South African adults holding a bachelor’s degree or higher qualification, it seems a stretch to feed the narrative that an academic endeavour is the only possible route to exiting the unemployment queue. Which begs the question, how do we begin to create a more inclusive perspective on competency without compromising its core concepts?

To be fair, following the traditional academic trajectory currently represents the best possible chance of securing a stable, employed future in South Africa. However, I’d argue that there needs to be a paradigm shift among all stakeholders when it comes to assigning competence within the workforce. This shift informs the core mission of our academy. We’re driven by the belief that talent can come from anywhere, that with the right opportunity that talent can thrive, and in the right environment that talent can acquire the tools and skills to be workplace ready. 

In addition to being a ladder towards developing professionals across fields, education should also be about preparing young people for the workplace, not just an exam. It should be about equipping young people to be productive. Passing or failing, six distinctions or an E average, present a milestone moment but they don’t accurately mark a measurable preparedness for employment.

Back to the matric class of 2021: Those that performed exceptionally will likely expect a smooth ride into their careers. Those that did not get university exemption, or those who didn’t pass, will likely believe their future is bleak.

The reality is that life becomes deliberately more difficult for people who failed or did poorly in matric. These young people will make up the majority of those that just get lost in the unemployment statistics. It’s no surprise that we, or even the young people themselves, believe they’ve missed the chance for a better life. However, as more institutions like ours create accessible and sustainable pathways to meaningful employment, my hope is that more young people realise that they have options. Options even after failing matric. Options even after passing matric and still not being able to pursue a particular degree due to limited resources, and options even after they’ve made it into their degree and things didn’t work out half way through for whatever reason.

So, how do various stakeholders begin to shift this paradigm? How do we practically and systematically expand perspectives of competence without compromising its true definition?

Corporate leaders, recruiters and team leads can become intentional about opening up their sourcing pools to slowly test the theory that competence isn’t necessarily a particular qualification from a particular institution. We’ve worked with a number of organisations over the years that have been incorporating WeThinkCode_ students into their graduate programmes to see first-hand how they perform against their university peers.

Secondary schools, particularly those within underserved communities and even private schools that have bursary programmes to take in students from underserved communities, can begin to expose students to their options by presenting them with non-traditional pathways. We partner with various schools and youth development programmes to mobilise talented youth within previously underestimated groups.

Lastly, and most ambitiously, perhaps the government, legislature and accreditation bodies can review new pathways that enable high school leavers to move forward towards meaningful employment despite not having matric qualifications. Although our programme at WeThinkCode_ is open to anyone between the ages of 17 and 35 with or without a matric, those that do not have matric gain the same skills on the programme but do not necessarily have access to the same work opportunities after the programme. Because of not having a matric, we are unable to give them the formal accreditation that the programme offers.

Of course, a paradigm shift like this is not the sole preserve of the IT or coding industry. It can, and should, be applied across a broad spectrum of society. There’s a strong argument to be made that while milestones are important metrics and measurement tools, a more holistic approach to developing a preparedness for a productive life should underpin all education.

This mindset is about restoring dignity. We tend to be punitive and one dimensional about milestones such as examinations and prescribe a “you are worthy” or “you are not worthy” badge.

Adopting this alternative mindset in no way undervalues the importance of quality basic and tertiary education. It is about broadening the criteria we use to ascribe competence and deciding who deserves a chance. There are a host of environmental factors that may or may not have contributed to a learner’s performance in a single exam. Let’s congratulate the achievers, work to improve education in all its guises, and honour the principle that everyone deserves a chance to be prepared for a productive life.

Huawei South Africa launches Women4Tech: Digital Skills Training for Women Entrepreneurs

August 11, 2021 in News, Opportunity, Training and development, Women in Tech

Huawei South Africa is calling on women entrepreneurs to apply for its digital skills training programme, Women4Tech. The free online course is open to savvy, tech-forward women entrepreneurs, and aims to advance their skills and help them use new technologies to grow, improve and digitise their businesses.

The training comprises of three courses, Cloud Computing and how it benefits SMME’s, digital marketing for business success, especially in an increasingly competitive online market space, and an introduction to App Development and a networking opportunity with award winning App Developers within the Huawei Mobile App ecosystem, and other successful women entrepreneurs.

“This Women’s Month we are proud to launch this campaign, to make women fundamentally more competitive in the digital economy. Women entrepreneurs and women-owned micro businesses traditionally play a critical role in South African society and by extension the economy. Our Women4Tech programme is designed to support these businesses through ICT knowledge sharing, facilitating digital transformation and business growth,” says Vanashree Govender: Media & Communications Manager, Huawei South Africa.

Participants in the training programme will each receive a free 6-month Huawei Cloud subscription.

The Digital Marketing course will be delivered by Musa Kalenga, a renowned entrepreneur, investor and author. “Over the last decade consumers have evolved in their need for information and the way they consume it. Technology has evolved to such an extent that the consumer context is now digital. The importance of digital marketing is that you can easily track and monitor how you reach, engage and convert consumers through strategic integrated communication,” says Kalenga.

The training is open to all women entrepreneurs, and they will be selected on several factors, including their readiness to adopt new technologies into their business. Women entrepreneurs interested in applying need to fill in a short application form. They will be contacted if selected to join the programme.

Training Dates:

  • Introduction to Cloud Computing: 16-18 August, 10:00-12:00
  • Digital Marketing: 24 August 09:00-15:00
  • Introduction to Mobile App Development & Networking Session: 25 August. 10:00-14:00


About Huawei 

Huawei is a leading global provider of information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure and smart devices. With integrated solutions across four key domains – telecom networks, IT, smart devices, and cloud services – we are committed to bringing digital to every person, home and organisation for a fully connected, intelligent world. 

Huawei’s end-to-end portfolio of products, solutions and services are both competitive and secure. Through open collaboration with ecosystem partners, we create lasting value for our customers, working to empower people, enrich home life, and inspire innovation in organisations of all shapes and sizes. 

At Huawei, innovation focuses on customer needs. We invest heavily in basic research, concentrating on technological breakthroughs that drive the world forward. We have more than 180,000 employees, and we operate in more than 170 countries and regions. Founded in 1987, Huawei is a private company fully owned by its employees.

Female-owned battery manufacturer secures R20m investment

August 11, 2021 in News, Women in Tech
Tumi Mphahlele, CEO, i-G3N

Tumi Mphahlele, CEO, i-G3N

I-G3N, the only black empowered female-owned SME to successfully develop lithium-ion batteries specifically for the African continent, has successfully raised R20 million from Edge Growth and the ASISA ESD initiative.

Recognising I-G3N’s capability in designing developing and manufacturing battery energy storage systems, Edge Growth and the ASISA ESD initiative have partnered with Secha Capital, an impact fund manager that shares a common vision of creating value via financial returns, job creation, funding of local, black-owned businesses and positive environmental outcomes.

“We are excited to partner with the ASISA ESD initiative and Edge Growth as we work towards our mission of providing accessible and affordable clean energy for all of Africa,” says Tumi Mphahlele, Chief Operations Officer, I-G3N. “This investment will help us meet the increasing demand for high quality, locally made, and trusted battery storage solutions,”

“With load-shedding becoming endemic in South Africa, and the recent change in electricity regulations for generation up to 100MW, this investment will help us serve larger segments of this growing market. We see the greatest impact of our solutions and products helping the average business and household that is looking for a simple way to keep the power on for remote work and learning – providing families with a quick and effective solution to be able to live without the fear of load-shedding,” she adds.

This investment and partnership will not only help to unlock growth in I-G3N’s key target sectors but will also ultimately increase adoption of renewable energy, create jobs and upskill local talent in the growing energy storage industry.

“Edge Growth and the ASISA ESD initiative are excited to partner with both I-G3N and Secha Capital in a transaction that embodies our mission to invest in local, impactful, innovative and high-growth businesses, and to team up with outstanding, values-aligned and value-adding investment partners,” says Shrivar Mohan, Investment Principal at Edge Growth.

“We’ve observed explosive growth in the energy storage market globally and, more importantly, locally due to national grid instability and rising electricity costs. With further governmental and regulatory support for decentralised energy generation, we expect this trend to continue in SA and across the continent,” he says.

Secha Capital has been supporting I-G3N over the last six months to formalise operations and redefine its go-to-market strategy.

“We are excited to bring on-board the ASISA ESD initiative and Edge Growth at a key inflection point for I-G3N, where the capital provided will have a catalytic impact both in terms of financial growth of the business as well as job creation,” says Yusuf Shaikh, Principal at Secha Capital. “We are also excited to see more investments flow into these growing industries, where innovative, black-owned SMEs like I-G3N exist, and are best positioned for growth with the right forms of capital.”

I-G3N’s  products and solutions as well as the team’s customer-centricity, diverse skillset, technical expertise, and ability to rapidly gain traction locally and into Africa sealed the deal, which will unlock growth in I-G3N’s key target sectors and aid in realising the company’s vision of providing accessible and affordable clean energy for all of Africa.

Furthermore, I-G3N is part of a handful of local lithium-ion battery manufacturers that serve over 60 000 installers of solar and backup power systems in Southern Africa, with their high-quality products having amongst the lowest failure rates in the market.

While the technology behind renewable energy is global, energy storage provided by I-G3N provides local solar installers, energy integrators and consumers with a local, affordable, reliable battery storage solution.

Energy storage represents a tremendous opportunity as Africa transitions to secure and clean energy, and it is key to security of supply. I-G3N is a fast-growing company with an exceptional management team, who are transforming our energy industry to provide secure, resilient cleaner energy to everyone.

It is companies like I-G3N that will drive economic growth, reduce unemployment and help bridge inequalities, while putting our country at the forefront of innovation and technology.


 About Secha Capital

Secha Capital is an early-stage impact private equity fund manager. Secha’s Operator-Investor model gives small, growing businesses a unique advantage to solve the missing middle and management gap via a growth and human capital arbitrage strategy. Secha Capital focuses on established companies in the FMCG, agribusiness, health care and manufacturing sectors throughout Southern Africa.

About the ASISA ESD initiative

The ASISA ESD initiative was established in March 2013 by the savings and investment industry to fast-track job creation by unlocking the growth potential of South Africa’s small and medium enterprise (SMEs) sector. The sustainable development of high-potential black owned SMEs is achieved through an innovative combination of tailored business support, access to market and financial support structured according to the specific needs of each SME and the market.

About Edge Growth

Edge Growth is a leading SME and Venture Fund Manager, specialising in developing small businesses and creating jobs and real transformation by connecting corporates and entrepreneurs, and growing SMEs by addressing their key constraints: Access to finance, markets and skills. Our offering consists of three services areas, designed to achieve maximum Impact:

  • ESD Strategy for corporates & building SMEs in their value chain
  • Investing in and growing SMEs through fund management
  • Scaling businesses to full potential through accelerator programmes

WeThinkCode_ realises gender parity goal

August 10, 2021 in News, Women in Tech
Nyari Samushonga, CEO, WeThinkCode_

Nyari Samushonga, CEO WeThinkCode_

Eighteen months after the launch of its WomenThinkCode= initiative, WeThinkCode_ has achieved its target of recruiting at least 50% women in its student intake. The success of this initiative reflects an intentional effort to identify and recruit talented women into the academy.

We are pleased that we are able to play a tangible role in driving inclusion within South Africa’s digital sector. Women are taking a seat at the tech table, says Nyari Samushonga, CEO WeThinkCode_. “Technology is driving growth and innovation in many of the most important sectors of the economy, and these young developers will be at the centre of this economic activity. Gone are the days when software developers were a forgotten cost centre relegated to the basement. Whether we are looking at financial services, health, education or agriculture, all of these sectors are being driven by technology,” she says.

Across WeThinkCode_’s campuses there is a marked increase in the number of young women, many of them drawn from demographics that have not previously enjoyed access to the digital sector. 

Samushonga believes that WeThinkCode_ is creating a replicable blueprint to counteract the structural exclusion that women in the tech sector have traditionally faced.

WeThinkCode_ is committed to driving transformation. Technology has the potential to drive much needed economic growth in South Africa. It’s been exciting to watch the intake of women come into their own as developers. Their aptitude and innovation will bring much needed talent to an industry that has a considerable shortage of quality skills,” Samushonga says.

Building inclusive technology teams is not just the ethically correct thing to do, it is good business. Representation is important. When were solving problems, we need women to bring their experience and address issues from their perspective,” she adds.

Gender parity milestone

From a low of 6% women in its first intake in 2016, WeThinkCode reached 17% in 2019. The WomenThinkCode= initiative was launched in 2019 to drive the recruitment of women and increase their retention within the programme. This year, the academy will welcome 233 women onto its campuses in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town. This milestone of gender parity is worth celebrating given the historical bias towards male recruits.

“The Covid 19 pandemic has accelerated the rate at which our world is being digitised. Because of the far reaching influence of technology, captains of industry now concede that no matter what business you are in, you’re also in the tech business,” Samushonga says. 

With today’s world being shaped by technology, it is imperative that the hearts and minds that build that technology should be fully representative of our world’s citizens. This is why we believe in the inclusion of women in tech,” she adds.

Women walking the path

Feedback from WeThinkCode_ graduates speaks volumes about the power of women in tech, I see WeThinkCode_ as a bag full of treats, says Prudence Mahlangu, a WeThinkCode_ graduate. It prepared me extremely well for how to become a successful new software engineer by helping me with my confidence, impeccable technical and soft skills, and a job opportunity.

Alyson Ngonyama agrees: Attending WTC_ turned into the most life changing two years of my life. From being able to only get the odd admin job here and secretary gig there, I now have an expanding career as a software engineer and can aspire to be whatever I want to be in my future.

Attitude and aptitude

So many South African women with the aptitude and attitude to succeed have had doors closed to them. This is where WeThinkCode_s recruitment process is a game changer. The academy’s selection tests are designed to identify high performing youth regardless of their prior education results. 

Applicants are assessed for logic, analytical skills, team work and resilience. Focusing on traits that correlate to success in the training programme and disregarding traditional selection models like matric results has been key to the inclusive recruitment.

About WeThinkCode_ – WeThinkCode_ is an independent South African software training academy that searches out the sharpest young minds in underserved populations, connects them with global thought leaders and moulds them into excellent software developers.  Our mission is to train Africas next generation of software developers and, in so doing, drive the digitisation of African business. WomenThinkCode= was established in 2019 to grow the number of women software developers in the technology sector.

GirlCode announces winners of its women-only hackathon

March 14, 2022 in Events, Training and development

GirlCode has announced the winners of its women-only hackathon, which encouraged teams to find solutions for workplace biases against women.

The GirlCodeHack took place in Johannesburg, at 22onSloane with 50 aspiring female developers participating in the event. GirlCode partnered with AWS, Mint Group, Takealot Group, DVT and Lenovo to host the event under the theme “Break the Bias” in celebration of International Women’s Day.

The objective of the hackathon, which is now in its eighth year and is more commonly referred to as GirlCodeHack, is to address the lack of women in the technology sector by allowing women to showcase their skills as part of an inclusive network of peers.

As well as building their skills, the hackathon aims to give participants more information about what it’s like to work as a software developer, and those who took part in the hackathon had access to mentors to talk about their experiences working in their roles and guide them throughout the weekend.

“Technology is becoming one of those things where everyone’s interested because it’s progressing and there are more jobs popping up in that sector,” says Zandile Mkwanazi, GirlCode CEO.

After the two-day challenge, a panel of judges which included Khetho Netsianda, AWS Cloud Support Associate; Riekert Strydom, Senior Developer for Mint Group, Ronnie Cloete, Executive for Software Development at DVT Software, Fozia Martin, Partner Account Manager at Lenovo and Kgotso Buys, Engineering director at Takealot Group chose the following winners from the submissions:

NTV’s winning project, a web application that will allow a company to register and get a “company code” for all their employees to use to remain anonymous when reporting biases they encounter within the company. The winning team NTV walked away with laptops, laptop bags, computer peripherals, software and R1 000 in Takealot vouchers.

Hack-Gen built a complaint logging system that allows employees to report incidences on bias. The system would then be able to provide real data on the type of biases their employees are facing and allow the HR department to implement relevant remedial programs. The team walked away with tablets, software and R500 in Takealot vouchers.

Hack Invasion Girls built a web application that anonymises job application processes which are inherently bias whether it be on the basis of gender, race, and even location, where candidates who live in townships might be overlooked in favour of those who live in urban areas. The team walked away with tablets, software and R250 Takealot vouchers

“Despite the progress that’s been made, when you walk into most IT departments, you will be greeted with predominately male faces,” says Mkwanazi.

“GirlCode started as a hackathon with the aim to not only show off the female tech talent we have in South Africa, but also to encourage young girls to consider a career in technology, and local companies to think about how they can support the development of women in tech. We have been supported by companies like Entelect and Boxfusion over the past 7 years and are motivated to keep creating such opportunities for young women in South Africa,” concludes Mkwanazi.

Women in Tech of the Week: Gabi Immelman

February 22, 2022 in CEO, Founder, Profiles, Women in Tech

Name: Gabi Immelman
Designation: Founder and CEO
Company: Mindjoy

What do you do every day?
I try play in expert mode at Mindjoy.

We are working to keep growing our inbound leads so that we can unlock the potential of children, ages 8-14 by connecting them to peers and projects that they love learning to code with. Our goal is to prepare youngsters with the critical digital and collaborative skills required for the future of work. We also aim to build children’s confidence in expressing themselves through technology.

How did you get into the tech space?
My desire is to have an impact beyond serving a small group of children at a micro-school I ran and leverage that technology in to larger communities.

What was the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Discipline = Freedom

What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into tech?
Focus is underrated. Start super small and and experiment weekly. The faster you can figure out how to get things done and develop a weekly executional cadence the more likely you are to make progress.

What motivates you to get out of bed every day?
Forget about getting out of bed, trying to create experiences where kids can find self-expression through building with technology keeps me in the fight. It is all for the moments where a child realises that they now have a superpower allowing them to make many valuable insights.

Who do you want to be when you grow up?
An astronaut
But I’ll settle for a pirate

Women in Tech of the Week: Vhonani Queen

January 24, 2022 in Operations, Profiles, Woman of the Week, Women in Tech

Name: Vhonani Queen
Designation: ICT Specialist: Unified Communications
Company: Government Printing Works

What do you do every day?
Managing SCCM (i.e. Patch Management, Antivirus Management, Manage 3rd Party Applications etc.) – Managing Microsoft Active Directory – Managing Microsoft Exchange Server – Managing Microsoft Lync / Skype for business Server and Teams – Managing DHCP & DNS Servers – Managing ICT Service Desk (Microsoft System Centre Service Manager) – Managing SCOM – Managing Windows Server 2008 R2 / 2012 R2/ 2016/ 2019 – Supporting VMware Infrastructure (Servers, VDI’s and view-persona) – Managing GPO’s – Supporting Microsoft SharePoint sites – Managing Fileserver and Printers.

How did you get into the tech space?
I studied Bcom Business Information Systems motivated with the interest of working with computers and how they function.

What was the best advice anyone ever gave you?
You can be anything you want to be and there’s nothing anyone hasn’t experienced out there in the world when you come across challenges in this field make google your best friend and you will be exposed to so much information to help resolve your issues.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into tech?
My advice would be do not be friend of challenges and embrace failure for that is where real learning happens, be self motivated and don’t be afraid as well to push yourself to the limit.

What motivates you to get out of bed every day?
Knowing that my environment is operating as expected and thinking of how to make it better from what it is by looking at what’s new out there and what benefits it bring to make work more interesting and fun.

Who do you want to be when you grow up?
There’s not a lot of female CIO’s so one day I would love to see myself adding to the small ratio.

Women in Tech of the Month: Kate Farina

December 5, 2021 in Founder, Profiles, Woman of the Month, Women in Tech

Name: Kate Farina
Designation: Co-Founder
Company: Be In Touch (Pty) Ltd

What do you do every day?
Be in Touch is a team of digital family wellness activists. Our business focuses on upskilling parents (primarily mothers) to understand the digital world their kids are heading into, both good and bad, and to empower them to protect, manage, monitor, guide and mentor their kids as they go online. We simplify what it means and what it takes to be a digital parent in today’s busy online-offline, one life world, and provide practical tools and solutions to give parents peace of mind, and keep kids safer and saner!

How did you get into the tech space?
I left a multi-portfolio governance executive role at one of South Africa’s largest corporates, to pursue a passion for making the world around me a better place. I loved the component of my job that entailed mentoring other women in the corporate environment, many of them mothers trying to juggle it all. Now, instead of mentoring their career development, I mentor their child development and protection! I have a teen and tween, so am right in the same space as so many other parents who are busy with so many priorities, and digital parenting feels like another heavy burden.

What was the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Don’t hide your light, there are people in the dark who really need it, to find their way out!

What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into tech?
I have an environmental legal background and am now in a very technical field, where I have to grapple with device, app and game settings, and how we can make tech safer for our kids to use! I capitalise my non-tech background to make and keep things simple for others. The point is that the tech field is wide open to so many different applications and opportunities.

What motivates you to get out of bed every day?
That there are parents and a family to whom I can bring peace of mind and a safer, saner online journey.

Who do you want to be when you grow up?
A star in the night sky, that can help parents navigate their way

Women in Tech of the Week: Liesl Rossouw

December 5, 2021 in Business development, Profiles, Woman of the Week, Women in Tech

Name: Liesl Rossouw
Designation: Business Analyst
Company: SPAR

What do you do every day?
A bit of everything. Business process mapping, data analytics, a lot of small project management etc.

How did you get into the tech space?
Studied Industrial Engineering

What was the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Proof you worth to yourself, not to others!

What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into tech?
If you have a passion for it, go for it! Dont back down because it looks like a male-dominated environment.

What motivates you to get out of bed every day?
The opportunity to learn (the working of) something new. To understand a new process.

Who do you want to be when you grow up?
Still pondering on this one…

Woman in Tech of the Week: Adel Adams

December 5, 2021 in Owner, Profiles, Woman of the Week, Women in Tech

Name: Adv.Adel Adams
Designation: Legal practitioner
Company: Legal Chain

What do you do every day?
I currently work on my startup in legal tech with the assistance of the I’m IN pre-accelerator program.

Adel Adams is a practising advocate of the high court, born and raised in Boksburg, with a special interest in labour law, amongst others and founding director of a start-up namely Legal-Chain. Exposure gained to the broad world and ease of use in technology while working for a JSE listed corporate.

What was the best advice anyone ever gave you?

Never give up. Be the game changer.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into tech?
Be the change you want to see. Life is a blessing the opportunities are endless. Stay positive.

Who do you want to be when you grow up?
I would like to be the owner of more than one female only tech empire.

Women in Tech of the Week: Nadine Murray

December 5, 2021 in Developer, Profiles, Woman of the Week, Women in Tech

Name: Nadine Murray
Designation: Software Developer
Company: Momentum

What do you do every day?
I work as a software developer in the IT department of Momentum TYB. My responsibilities include the analysis, creation, development and testing of software applications to improve business processes.

How did you get into the tech space?
I’ve always had a passion for problem solving and finding new ways of doing things more effectively. As a teenager I was told to stay away from IT because it’s a man’s world. I decided to prove them wrong.

What was the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Today’s hell is a gift later. Every challenge in life is an opportunity to grow and improve yourself.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into tech?
Go for it! Believe that you can and persist no matter what. There is still so much to be done in the industry.

What motivates you to get out of bed every day?
My personal goals, my family and a desire to make a difference.

Who do you want to be when you grow up?
I’m a wife and mom of two beautiful kids. I have 15 years experience in IT and I hope to be a mentor to young girls starting out in the field.

Women in Tech of the Month: Nikita Dehal

November 29, 2021 in Profiles, Woman of the Month, Women in Tech

Name: Nikita Dehal
Designation: Legal Manager
Company: Ozow

What do you do every day?
Professionally, in my role at Ozow, which is a South African FinTech company, my day to day varies. Most days I am reviewing and advising on contracts from both a legal and business perspective, I am driving risk mitigation and regulatory compliance, and I am engaging with various internal and external stakeholders in an effort to improve processes and efficiencies. I am also engaged in building the business’s policy framework and in high-level strategic initiatives.

How did you get into the tech space?
I am passionate about innovation, learning through innovating and contributing to financial inclusion in Africa. I left the traditional law firm environment seeking a place to explore my passions and utilise my skill set and acumen. Having experienced the tech world in the US, I gained exposure to the opportunities for lawyers in tech. I actively sought such a role when returning to South Africa.

What was the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Define your purpose, explore your passions, recognise your worth and reach for stars.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into tech?
I would advise that he/she consider their abilities, strengths and weaknesses, conduct their research into the tech environment and look to people with similar backgrounds for mentorship and guidance. I think it is important to ensure that your professional and personal strengths and abilities align with a role in the industry that you are seeking, and an individual in the industry that you look up to. In this way, you can adequately plan a path to achieving your desired professional goals.

What motivates you to get out of bed every day?
I love what I do and feel that I am living out my purpose. This motivates me.