An Experience in work – guest post from Owen Maurice

Owen is 15 and has been working in the Storage Made Easy offices in the UK for the past week and a half as part of his school work experience. We thought it would be nice for Owen to contribute a guest post as to what he has discovered as part of this – Owen’s post is below and can also be found on his blog.

For the last week, I have been with a company, “Storage Made Easy” who kindly decided to take me on for work experience. SME is a cloud solution for enterprise, and has given me an opportunity to learn how to apply knowledge and skills I have, into a working environment. So far I have spent 5 days with SME, each day presenting a new area of business for me to come to grips with.

Day one – Testing.
This was my first day of work experience and was spent testing the product, making sure it all worked well and if not, any problems had to be reported for fixing. Various excel sheets had to be completed, confirming all aspects of the product were without bugs or glitches. Before this day, I had no idea the extent in which testing has to be done, and how every single tiny little thing must be tested. Not only that, but it had to be tested on every OS, (Windows, Linux, iOS etc.).

Day two – Marketing.
This was probably the day I was looking forward to most, as I believe to see myself as having reasonably strong social connections, and I thought this could help me in this area of SME. However as I quickly learnt, having strong social media links isn’t the only factor required in the marketing field. I was taught about how using services such as Bitly and GoogleAnalytics, location, origin (Facebook, Twitter etc.), frequency of clicks, date and time of clicks can all be monitored, as soon as you click on a link that was published. Later, I also learned about sites like MailChimp, which allow you to send letters and links out to mass numbers of people at once, and even released some of my own tweets advertising the business!

Day three – Support.
Upgrading, modifying and tampering with various electronic devices in my spare time has resulted in what I believe to be fairly developed problem solving skills; I was looking forward to getting to potentially exercising these skills today. I was introduced to some software and services such as JoinMe and ZenDesk. After a quick tutorial on the features on ZenDesk, exploring how the program automatically records and stores any customer problems and issues, I was shown through the process if solving one these issues. This was when realised, problem solving skills were not a key factor in the support side of things, instead support was in charge of organising issues, categorising them into who needs to solve them, then sending them off for the developers to repair, which is where the real problem solving skills came into play. This day hugely benefited me as if it wasn’t for this day, I may have never learnt the difference between what the two jobs require, and I may have even applied for the wrong field of work when I am older!

Day four – Sales.
I was interested to see what this day brought as typically, I wouldn’t expect there to be any reason for somebody to work in this department. I thought the product was up for purchase, and customers just purchased away as they feel. The real impact on sales was quality of marketing. I was wrong. I spent the day surfing LinkedIn, finding potential customers who work in cloud computing, or are CTOs of their company, to later be rang, or approached by other methods, to directly offer the product. This could increase sales dramatically as I realised companies may not go out of their way to find a product like what SME offer, yet when approached and actually take time to listen about, and learn some of the fantastic features of the product, they decide it could be a good idea to purchase.

Day five – Work!
This was my last day of the week, but my first of solid work. I searched LinkedIn with key words, refining me down to people working for cloud storage companies and have a position of technical command, such as CTO or Cloud Architect. I then recorded their nationality, name, company, position, and LinkedIn account on excel, to then be rang later by sales, advertising SME. As SME is a global company, I had to search for people from various different countries. Whilst doing this, I learnt I had to write some searches in the language of the desired country, as this gave me more results, and in the process, I also gained a new skill.

My first week of work was a great experience. I met lots of very nice people, who have given me an insight into the work of work, and the skills necessary to do well in it. I have gained various new skills, and acquired a large range of new knowledge from programs that could potentially be useful to me in the future, to what different areas of work require to work well in them. I can confidently say that even in just one week, I have had an experience that will have a very positive impact on finding a job, and working in general when I’m older.

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