Helena works in Human Centred Design (UX) in the Futures and Innovations department at BAE Systems Applied Intelligence. She shares her pathway into cyber security and her tips for getting started in the industry.
Tell us a bit about your journey into the industry
I gained my degree in graphic design (advertising) with the expectation to work in an ad agency, creating commercials and campaigns, attending awards and playing music throughout the day. While my ability to sketch and render concepts remains the focus changed early, in my career.
Human behaviour fascinates me.
Human behaviour when making key decisions in a time-framed environment continues to fascinate me and over a course of nearly two decades my role has transitioned from graphic designer to Information architect to Human Centred Design consultant (User experience).
Additionally to ensure a solid level of understanding, I have also gained further qualifications in Psychology (Dip.) and Mind and Cognition (Cert.)
What are your top tips for those looking to get into the industry?
Find what truly inspires you and build a network of people who can help and support you to achieve your goals. Whether through events or campaigns, work experience or group networks. Harness the wealth of resources at your disposal and if you see an opportunity – be bold.
What are three of the top traits you should have to work in cyber security?
- An ability to embrace and adept to change.
- Believing in if you make it through the interviewing process – you belong there.
- Curiosity keep asking ‘the whys’, ‘how’s’ and ‘what if’s?
Anything you’d like to say to inspire women into this sector?
This is a fascinating industry and being able to help people wield and analyse huge amounts of data, through a well-designed user interface, is what keeps me engaged and constantly looking for new solutions. That however is only half the job. It’s about engaging with people first hand (user research) and understanding what their tasks and frustrations are; how things work (and often don’t work) (user behaviour); accommodating for business, budgetary and technical constraints (business benefits) and still managing to enhance the UI, beyond expectations. Now who wouldn’t call that a good days work.
Interested in a career with BAE Systems? Click here for more info.