Updating Results

PEXA

  • 100 - 500 employees

Matthew Norris

Early on, start looking into internships and graduate programs. The more you’re able to get involved in these things, the better.

What's your job about?

My employer is a company that has built an online platform for the selling/buying and transfer of land and property. My areas of responsibility as a graduate include helping my current team with their assigned work and improving my knowledge of the business and skills required to succeed.

An example of some daily work I did for a previous team:
I would participate in our daily morning stand up meeting and inform my team about how I am going with my current coding work. I would then complete the code I picked up that’s needed for my team to complete their current ‘sprint’ of work. For example, using ‘boto3’ to access AWS Lake Formation to build a Data Lake that would be used by the wider company in the future. I would then participate in any planning meetings that are required. In the afternoon, I'd again stand up to inform team of current progress and discuss any issues. A teenager with a reasonable understanding of coding and technology would probably understand what I’m doing. Otherwise, any random person would probably not understand what was being done at a detailed level.

What's your background?

I was born and raised in South Africa. I moved to Perth, Australia when I was 13. I attended high school for 5 years and then graduated and went straight to university. I spent 4.5 years at university as I wasn’t the best student and it took me awhile to find my feet at university. After graduating university, I moved to the UK in early 2018 to look for work in the finance sector, where I spent 6 months before deciding that it wasn't for me. I moved back to Perth where I worked occasional odd jobs, spending most of 2019 applying to graduate jobs with minimal success. I applied to PEXA and moved through the application steps and eventually was offered the position. I planned the move to Melbourne that would be required to work for the company, where I have been for just over a year. For life stories, I think my 6 months in the UK was extremely influential on my life. It was first time living away from home for an extended period, so I learnt a lot about myself and what I wanted to (or not do) with my life.

Could someone with a different background do your job?

I think someone with a different background could do my job. Depending on who they are, they might struggle at first but with enough persistence and effort, they would succeed. As with most coding jobs, I think you need to be quite a detailed oriented person to perform well. You also need to be able to think laterally and outside the box to come up with solutions to the problems that will be faced, plus a desire to learn new things constantly is highly desired.

What's the coolest thing about your job?

The coolest part about my job in my opinion is when you get to see the results of your work. An example of this was when I had spent a couple of weeks helping my team build a Data Lake using Lake Formation and then we had to deploy the changes that we had made. I found it satisfying and enjoyable to watch the progress bar slowly complete on the part that I had written. It was definitely a proud moment. I'm also proud of when I helped a team onboard their application to the Data Lake that was being built.

What are the limitations of your job?

I haven’t had to work on the weekend yet, but it can happen if something extremely important needs to be finished ASAP. My job is not physically demanding, but it can be a little mentally demanding. Some of the tools and programs that are used can be quite tricky to understand on a conceptual level but it's nothing that can’t be overcome. If you’re not into coding or working in a DevOps style, then the job is probably not for you.

3 pieces of advice for yourself when you were a student...

  • Know and understand what will be required of you to graduate from your chosen university. I had made the mistake of assuming I knew what I needed to do to graduate and it came to bite me in the butt.
  • Try and join a club or social organisation. University can be quite lonely if all you do is go to campus, attend classes and then go home.
  • Early on, start looking into internships and graduate programs. The more you’re able to get involved in these things, the better.