StrongRoom AI Builds Victoria’s Digital Workforce by Employing Upskilled Interns

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It’s no surprise that technology continues to revolutionise the way that we live and work each and every day. In order for businesses to thrive in an ever accelerating digital world, the need for motivated people with digital skills is greater now more than ever.

In July 2021, the Victorian Government commenced its first Digital Jobs program aiming to build the state’s digital workforce by training and upskilling mid-career Victorians allowing them to transition into digital careers. With a strong vision to build a talent pool of professionals who can meet the growing need for digital skills and expertise in the state, over the following three years, the Victorian Government forecasts to support 5,000 mid-career Victorians. The program allows Victorians to complete a six-month program that includes 12 weeks of industry-backed training followed by 12 weeks of applying their training first-hand in a digital job with a Victorian business.

Motivated applicants over the age of 30 who are ready for a career change and businesses searching for great people with digital skills is a match made in an increasingly dire digital job market heaven. With the Victorian government backing both newly skilled workers and businesses to succeed, we embraced the opportunity to partner with the Victorian Government’s Digital Jobs program to employ three interns across Software Development, Pharmacy Installation, and Digital Marketing. 

Now at their 12-week StrongRoom AI employment checkpoint, here’s what they had to say about their experience:

How do you feel that the DJPR 12-week education course prepared you for your job placement in your current role? 

Blythe Whittier (Digital Marketing Coordinator): As someone going into my particular course of Brand Experience and Content and Social Media Marketing with virtually no knowledge or experience, I was pleasantly surprised that the 12-week education course was so content heavy and detailed. I still access my online modules on a regular basis while in my current digital marketing role!

Dean Pearcey (Installation Coordinator – Pharmacy): The course I did was Electrical Engineering. We covered programming using Python, JavaScript, CSS, and SQL. In my current role, I’m not doing any programming but I do use SQL a little bit.

David Miller (Software Developer Intern – Cloud): I think the DPPR [sic] course is most suitable for entry level web programming roles, and probably data analyst roles using Python. I personally was hoping for more time to be spent on the Software Development Lifecycle process and integration processes because I had come into the course with a decent knowledge of programming. I wasn’t there to learn programming, I wanted to learn the other critical skills required to join and integrate smoothly into an established team/project. I don’t think the course was flexible to students that already had a programming foundation. It is only with the skills I developed in my own time pre/post the 12 week course that I am able to work in my current role at Strong Room. The technologies we use in the Pharmacy applications team are well beyond the scope of the DJPR 12-week course; such as C++.

How is your experience going being employed by StrongRoom AI?

David Miller (Software Developer Intern – Cloud): I’m really enjoying my time at Strong Room. The whole team is fantastic. The culture of the business is a welcome change from my previous employer prior to the DJPR project, and I’m enjoying the work I’m doing in the Pharmacy Applications team. Every day I’m pushing myself, learning new skills, and working on a great project. 

Dean Pearcey (Installation Coordinator – Pharmacy): In one word…BRILLIANT! I love the community feel of the workplace and I couldn’t ask for better workmates or management team.

Blythe Whittier (Digital Marketing Coordinator): StrongRoom AI has treated me so well; clearly the company has an excellent eye when it comes to hiring because everyone on the team has been absolutely lovely. I have never before felt so supported, trusted, and encouraged to not only manage my own work and my own time but also to explore my own creativity.

Do you feel that your job placement in your current role is granting you a new set of skills and work experience? If so, how?

Dean Pearcey (Installation Coordinator – Pharmacy): Nearly everything I do is completely different from what I’ve done in the past. The bulk of my job is contacting pharmacies to gain access to their terminals so I can install the StrongRoom application which allows them to streamline their drug management processes…Depending on what system they used in the past, I also have to manually update their drug balances which means having to learn a new set of terms related to drug replacements.

Blythe Whittier (Digital Marketing Coordinator): Without a doubt! I have always had a knack for creative writing, engaging an audience, and creating content, but I’ve never had the opportunity to apply these skills into a real-world paid role. Not only that, but my current role pushes me to apply those same skills and creativity into more business-like tasks, such as writing press releases and posting social media content that represents the company; it’s all very exciting!

David Miller (Software Developer Intern – Cloud): Absolutely! Being my first software developer role in the industry, I’ve been having to learn how to properly work on a codebase simultaneously with multiple other developers, the code review process with my Technical Lead, and also learning an industry standard framework (Qt), which I’ve been wanting to explore for some time in my personal side projects. I’m so glad my role is C++ based too, it’s my language of choice, and something I spent a lot of effort learning in my spare time whilst trying to transition into software development industry – now I can really hone my skills with this complex and powerful programming language that’s used in all areas of high performance computing. 

Any other additional comments about your experience that you would like to add?

David Miller (Software Developer Intern – Cloud): I am so grateful that Strong Room provided me this opportunity.

Blythe Whittier (Digital Marketing Coordinator): I would highly recommend the DJPR program to anyone and everyone! It’s such an incredible opportunity that has allowed me to get my foot in the door to a field of work that I’ve always been interested in, but that, unfortunately, I wasn’t qualified for. I honestly feel that the DJPR program along with StrongRoom AI have really kicked off my career rather than just yet another dead-end job and that this experience has changed my life!

At StrongRoom AI, we strive to provide the best products and services to our customers – We firmly believe that by creating a team of some of the most motivated and hard-working individuals, we are able to successfully achieve this goal. We are always eager to support our community and to aid in the growth of individual success. We are proud of our interns and the work that they have accomplished while a part of the StrongRoom AI team and we look forward to their continuing success at StrongRoom AI.

To find out more about the Victorian Government’s Digital Jobs initiative, follow their website – https://djpr.vic.gov.au/digital-jobs

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