International Women’s Day 2024 – Celebrating the important roles of our female leaders, Mia Dunniece

Published: 7 March 2024

Reading time: About 3 minutes

Mia Dunniece

What is your job role?

I am an Apprentice Quality Assurance (QA) Engineer, responsible for the quality of the software that is developed at AI. I work with the QA team to ensure that any software that is released functions as expected and meets all required criteria. I help to design and execute test cases to verify the quality of new functionality, and to maintain confidence in existing functionality.

Why have you chosen to start a career in technology?

I have always been interested in technology, having 2 siblings in the tech industry. I did a couple of years of a biomedical engineering degree, however, I felt that it wasn’t the best fit for me. However, I did a couple of modules in programming, and really enjoyed the logic involved.

I took a break for a few years to get married, and start a family, but I always had those modules in the back of my head as something I could do. When I was ready to start back to work, I applied to, and was offered an apprenticeship opportunity with AI through WorkPlus. I would not have been able to commit to going back into full time education with a young family. Finding an opportunity where I could work remotely, while working on my degree was a fantastic opportunity.

Would you encourage women to join the industry or a similar role?

Absolutely! I have had a fantastic experience working as a QA Engineer. When I started, I knew very little about anything! The engineering team was truly fantastic at getting me on board, and training me, despite having little to no previous exposure to the software they used. I have stayed in QA, as I have come to really enjoy the area, however other apprentices who started in QA with me have moved onto DevOps, and Development.

I would say to anyone thinking of joining the industry, absolutely give it a try! There are increasingly new avenues to get into the industry apart from the traditionally university route. Also, there are so many different areas you can work in, you are almost guaranteed to find something you will enjoy!

What do you think of the business culture within Automated Intelligence?

I have had a fantastic experience with AI. They have been very patient with my training when I first arrived. They have a fantastic working ethos, always encouraging us to improve our skills. Everyone is always very friendly, and always willing to help.

Do you have any goals that you would like to achieve in your career and personal life? What would be your obstacles and what support would you like to have?

I am very happy so far with the trajectory I am on in QA. Up until now I have been mostly focused on manual testing, however I have been slowly learning about automated testing, and can see myself moving in that direction. AI have been very encouraging to me, helping to point me in the right direction, giving me access to Udemy courses, and providing time each week to progress in my learning.

You can find out more on Mia’s role and apprenticeship programme on her recent interview with BBC Newsline here.