Here is what Scrum Master Declan McDaid has to say about his experience changing his career path to join the tech world after 14 years –

“I started my career as a Concrete finisher after I completed my Leaving Certificate and having worked 14 years in the building industry Ireland suffered a recession. As a result, I was made redundant, soon after I started working in a bookmaker’s shop. While working in the bookmakers I somehow became the IT guy for the company (turn it off and turn it on again). I really liked the troubleshooting and with some persuading from my wife, I decided to pursue a career in IT.

In 2012, I looked at a few different courses and settled for a level 6 in IT support in LYIT. The reason for choosing this course was that it was 18 months with a 6-months work placement in the middle. Due to not being in education for 16 years I thought this would be the best fit for me. During the last semester,  LYIT was offering a level 9 DevOps course for the first time. I applied for a place on this and was successful. Having not heard of DevOps until this I was curious to learn more.

The course enforced DevOps and the agile methodology, work placement was a mandatory part of the course. On completion of my work placement, I was offered a development role with the company.  After 1 year with that team, I joined a new team working with data integration team that was tasked with making data available from microservices to the current mainframe system. While I was happy doing data integration work, I still had a keen interest in a career in DevOps.

I heard about (Neueda Technologies Athlone) Zinkworks through a current Zinkworks employee and they were recruiting engineers. I applied through the website. The recruitment process was a pleasant experience. I was successful with the interview and was offered a role. I was still apprehensive about leaving TCS but thankfully Orlagh reassured me about it being a good place to work and after 6 or so months here I’d have to say it has been the right choice.

I am currently a Scrum Master for a team working on deploying applications on AWS with the latest technologies. Aileen organised Scrum Master training for me a few weeks after joining which I completed, and I am now a certified Scrum Master with the Scrum Alliance. After 6 or so months here I’d have to say it has been the right choice. It has been an educational and enjoyable experience (can’t wait for the next company outing) to date, to make it even better I am now the proud owner of a Mac book which I won from Zinkworks on a draw which was held for all employees who have had a referral in 2021.”


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