We recently hosted a Women in Tech webinar. Through this interactive event, with all-female speakers from Cardo AI, we aimed to connect, educate, and inspire other women interested in working in – and with – technology.
Keep reading to find more about what was discussed by our panelists and what are the main take-aways for young women looking at a career in technology.
The inclusion of women in the tech industry is an ongoing challenge that deserves more and more attention. At Cardo AI we have created a series of events and initiatives specifically aimed at highlighting the contribution of women in the technology environment. If you want to read the review of our first online Women in Tech conference, held in January 2022, click here.
Moderated by Cristina Hanga, ESG Specialist at Cardo AI, our latest webinar focused on our speakers’ academic and professional backgrounds, their role in Cardo, and their career advice for other young talents interested in a tech journey.
What inspired the Women in Tech webinar
We wanted to clearly describe what it means to work in the tech industry by hosting a diverse panel of speakers, with career paths that span from data engineering to data science, as well as software development and business analysis.
Our objective? Pave the tech road for more and more women and encourage them to undertake this exciting and inspiring journey.
The main goal of this interactive webinar was to feature female tech talents working in different roles and introduce all the career opportunities that the tech industry, and specifically fintech, can offer.
At CARDO AI we are well aware of the challenges related to the inclusion of women in highly technical fields.
Where is the gap?
Every year, the European Commission provides a Women in Digital scoreboard, highlighting the status of equal opportunities in the tech ecosystem. While there is not a significant gender gap when it comes to digital skills, when it’s about picking a college degree, somehow the gap widens, and it becomes even bigger in the ICT job spectrum.
What does this data mean? Women express an interest in technology from a very young age like their male counterparts. However, this interest seems to later be discouraged somehow, which makes them less likely to undertake tech paths at university or in their careers.
At Cardo AI, we want to encourage and inspire young women to follow their passion. Sharing experiences from our bright talents during webinars and online events is one of the ways we aim to do so.
Who shared their experience during the webinar?
During the online event, we covered four main areas:
- Data Engineering: Data engineering is the process of designing and building systems to make information ready and accessible for data analysis at scale.
- Data Science: Data science deals with large volumes of data using modern tools and techniques to find unseen patterns. Scientific methods, processes, algorithms, and systems are used to extract knowledge and insights from structured and unstructured data.
- Machine learning: ML is a method of data analysis that automates analytical model building.
- Software Engineering: The process of designing, developing, and maintaining software
- Business Analysis: Business analysts bridge the gap between IT (technical team) and the business (client requirements).
Working with DATA
Rafaela has been working as a data engineer in Cardo AI since May 2020. After having studied Business Informatics at the University of Tirana, she worked briefly in the banking industry as a Data Quality Analyst and later on as a database developer.
Rafaela talked about the challenges she had to face in her career, such as the use of old technologies and systems from most companies. However, now that Rafaela is working with Cardo AI, she is contributing to the innovation of the fintech market.
What exactly is data engineering? While the term may be confused with other tech roles (data analysts or data scientists), a data engineer focuses on developing and optimizing data systems, building the right data pipelines, and making information available and ready to be analyzed.
Kesiana Meco joined CARDO AI’s Data Science team in the spring of 2021, after completing a Master of Science in Electronics Engineering at the Polytechnic University of Tirana. Since then, she has been working on a variety of very interesting projects, from chatbots to data processing structures for our products.
Why is data science so attractive?
The demand for data scientists has significantly increased in the last few years, as a result of the growing need for businesses to analyze and work with all the available data they gather from different sources.
However, by sharing how she handles it daily, Kesiana additionally clarified how enjoyable this job can be.
How? With a description of how she got to master new skills and hone the ones she already had in the fintech world:
This is what she had to say about growing in her role and in her skills:
“I’ve been working for almost a year as a data scientist, but there is something new to learn and exciting projects to work on every day. This keeps me highly motivated to improve my skills.”Kesiana Meco
Machine Learning Ops
Xhensila Poda is currently working as a Machine Learning Ops at CARDO AI.
After completing a Master of Science in Informatics at the University of Tirana, she started her career as a Full Stack Software Developer. During this time, she also worked as an intern in the artificial intelligence area.
This allowed Xhensila to take her first steps in the Data engineering field and, later on, to push her career toward Machine learning.
Here’s how Xhensila defines her role and how it interconnects with the activities of other data professionals:
“I am the last step in the chain. I take the model that Kesiana or other data scientists have built-in their local environment in their local machine and bring it out to production where it can benefit the business. Here it can be used by real users, with real data.”– Xhensila Poda
Back-End and Front-End development
Anisa presented her role as Software Engineer inside Cardo and what motivated her to apply here. After finishing her Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science at the University of Tirana, Anisa worked as a .Net Developer for about one year before joining Cardo at the start of 2022.
Anisa also elaborated in detail on what being a Back-End Engineer is like, her responsibilities, and the different tasks she has to handle:
I applied to Cardo AI because I saw an opportunity to grow and develop my career in the FinTech industry, which is one of the fastest-growing fields to work in for a software engineer. In addition, at Cardo AI you have the chance to work on challenging engineering problems and develop products from scratch, which makes the company a great place to grow in.– Anisa Bakiu
From teaching math to developing digital interfaces
Lutmira is a Front-End Developer at Cardo AI. She started working right after finishing a Master’s degree in Education at the University of Tirana, specializing in Mathematics. Lutmira worked for a few years as a Math teacher before developing an interest in software development.
“You are probably wondering how I ended up in programming! Well, the answer is my sister. She is a programmer and I used to ask her many times, while seeing her coding, to explain to me what was the output of a certain piece of code. She always answered me with the same question: ‘Why don’t you try to learn to code so you can understand it yourself?!’And that is what I did. I started searching about programming and to attend a few courses. I realized that I like web development and further ahead I focused on Front-End.”– Lutmira Kanani
Lutmiras’ experience with Cardo started less than a year ago with an internship, and now she works full-time with us. What does she do specifically? Here is how Lutmira explains her duties and what her role covers:
- Developing and maintaining the user interface, creating tools that improve site interaction.
- Optimizing the user experience while providing user-friendly access to what is done by the Back-End team.
- Implementing visual elements that users see and interact with within a web application.
Being a Business Analyst
Xhoana holds Bachelor’s degree in Banking and Finance from Epoka University. She has experienced different aspects of the financial industry, having worked as an accountant for several companies. In addition, Xhoana has worked as a Financial Advisor at Deloitte before joining Cardo AI more than a year ago.
Amela, on the other side, followed a slightly different path. After finishing her studies in Business Informatics at Epoka University, she started working as a Teaching Assistant.
She then worked as a business analyst at a software company, before moving to Cardo AI and helping our Specialty Finance team.
“Basically, Business Analysts work as translators between developers and clients. We have to understand the client’s needs and communicate them properly to our developers. We also work with the programming team to help improve our product, and for future product updates that we are trying to implement.”– Xhoana Myrta
Are you wondering whether you need to be good at programming to be a business analyst? Being familiar with basic programming languages can definitely be an advantage. However, it’s not a prerequisite to accessing this type of job role.
:If you are studying Banking and Finance, you don’t need to be obsessed with the idea that in order to be a Business Analyst you need to have advanced programming skills. You can do very well even with some basic coding and programming skills or knowledge. However, don’t be afraid if you lack such knowledge. You can acquire it through online training, university classes, or even during daily work processes and tasks.:– Amela Rahimi
Do you want to know everything we shared and talked about during this webinar? Check out the video recording accessible below here.
If you are interested in a career in tech and want to explore opportunities at CARDO AI? Check our talent page!