Q&A: Stefan Simons, BlueQuant

The IT director at hedge fund firm BlueQuant Capital Management - and IT Pro Leaderboard member - discusses how IT has evolved.

What was your first IT job?

My first role was for a PC manufacturer call Apricot Computers.

How has the world of IT changed since you first started in the sector?

When I first started, being in IT was almost a shameful job. Very few people did it and equally few understood what it means. Nowadays, a significant proportion of the overall labour force work in the general IT sector. It's definitely no longer something to be embarrassed about.

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I've always loved programming. I remember as a 10-year-old programming my Acorn Electron. I also remember for my GCSE Computer Science being very proud at using all 32k of the available memory in the schools BBC Micro.

What do you think are the most important skills people wanting to enter the IT job market should have nowadays?

Because the genre is so wide thesedays, I don't think you can say a single skill is suitable across the whole spectrum. However, if I had to pick one, I guess attention to detail would be my choice.

What advice would you give someone thinking of entering the IT jobs market/your younger self?

Be willing to learn and try and stay humble.

What is the biggest challenge facing IT professionals at the moment?

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Staying on top of the ever widening spectrum of technology.

What technologies/trends are you currently watching?

Microwave technology

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