Tech at PwC: A day in the life

Sheridan Ash, women in tech leader at PwC

PwC, London
@SashLondon

 

 

 

What is your job?

I work with our head of technology and investments, Jon Andrews, to develop and implement PwC’s technology strategy. This includes how we will work with our clients, developing new tech services and businesses and also how we disrupt ourselves using tech. I am also PwC’s women in tech leader, having set up this initiative over three years ago.

What does a typical day look like?

There is no such thing as a typical day in my role. The only constant is that it is never boring! In my role as PwC’s women in tech leader, I am working hard to get the message out there to more young girls about the opportunities for women in tech careers. A lot of my time is spent talking at conferences and with people across the industry to raise the profile of this issue, but also to work together to see how we can create a positive change. For example, we recently ran an event at The Science Museum with over 80 school girls to help dispel some of the myths about technology careers and excite them about the opportunities. In the evening, we then brought over 90 senior people from across the technology industry together to discuss how we can tackle this issue together.

As well as raising the profile of this issue, I am working to get more women into tech roles at PwC and to make it a more attractive, inclusive working environment. We’re looking to attract more women into tech roles at PwC, train more females and work harder to advance those already there. We’re also looking to create new pathways to get into the industry.

What is the best thing about your job?

Now is such an exciting time to be involved in the technology sector. Technology is already fundamentally changing the way we live and work and the possibilities for what could be achieved in the future is huge. I want to encourage more women to get involved - after all, women are often the main buyers and users of tech and we need more women involved in the creation of the technology of the future to make sure it really works for all of society. I know many women are often put off a career in technology as they think they need to be really techie or scientific, but the reality is that a lot of the work involves relationship building and understanding how to use technology to create engaging consumer experiences. There really is a role for everyone. Technology is changing our world and I passionately want more women to be leading that change.

Technology is already fundamentally changing the way we live and work and the possibilities for what could be achieved in the future is huge.

How did you get into your job?

I have taken anything but a typical route into technology! I left school at 16 with very few qualifications, having undiagnosed dyslexia, and was spotted by an agent and entered the world of runway modelling. I completed my first degree in my 20s and have worked my way up ever since. I am an example of the fact you don’t have to come from a technology background to succeed in this industry.

What skills do you need in your job?

Tech roles are so varied that there is a role for everyone, no matter what your skillset is. The key skills I use in my day-to-day work are building relationships, influencing and bringing different people and teams together, to solve client’s and society's problems. Today, being creative and good at collaborating with others are key skills that you need for a tech career, things women are very strong at.  I am very passionate about the positive benefits that technology can bring and I think this enthusiasm carries through into the work I do.

What's the best advice you've been given?

To believe in yourself and the changes you can make. I started PwC’s Women in Tech initiative three years ago as I wasn’t happy to accept the status quo of technology roles being dominated by men. When I started the initiative it was just me, now I have a team behind me and backing of our executive board to make a real difference. Don't listen to people that say you can't change things because you absolutely can.

Contact us

Sheridan Ash
Technology and investments director
Tel: +44 (0)20 7212 2171
Email

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