June 12, 2017

My interest towards math led me to software industry

“I never really planned to pursue a career in the IT industry. I just sort of ended up here, naturally. I studied math in the University of Helsinki. Math had always been my favorite subject at school; I did fairly well in math class and always had the motivation to work hard for my math grades. So, after high school it seemed like a logical choice to pursue a career in math and continue studying it at university level.

I began studying programming only in the last few years of my studies. I was trying to figure out what I would do after graduation: where would my math studies lead me? Programming seemed like rational addition to my math degree, because it would open many new doors for me. My major was insurance and finance math, and combining those two, insurance math and programming, basically led me here, at Profit Software.

I have been working at Profit for three years now. I’m a developer. I first started as an intern and after the internship period got the opportunity to continue working here. Initially the plan was that I would work mainly with math related issues. However, after my first developing tasks I started receiving other assignments, too, as the communication with customers seemed to be going well. Overall my job includes software development (some of the tasks include math, but not all), build tasks, working with test environments as well as interacting with the customer. I work with different kinds of developing tasks, so I guess you could call me an all-around developer: a jack of all trades.

In the IT industry the sheer number of tools and procedures can sometimes act as a challenge. One should be able to consolidate a set of tools from a selection that seems almost infinite. And because these tools and procedures are evolving continuously, one’s skills and working habits should progress, too. However, this evolving of skills is a double-edged sword. It’s also one of the upsides of this industry. Because there is an endless supply of information and tools available in various open libraries, it is quite easy to develop your skills. All you need is the right kind of motivation and some time.

For someone considering the software industry as a future career I would recommend studying computer science, for example in the University of Helsinki. This gives you a good level of general programming skills, which are beneficial in various fields of IT. If your hopes and dreams are more defined, and you wish to work in the gaming industry, for example, there are more specialized study programs, too, that give you a more specified set of skills.  Of course math is a good path as well, although it requires quite a lot of work. However, math gives you a good base of knowledge on top of which it is good to begin building versatile programming skills.”

Antti Pohjanpalo works at Profit Software as a Developer