Behind the scenes: (Who runs the world…?)
As March marks International Women’s Day, we put the spotlight on some of our amazing female team members here at Moneybox HQ. We asked Charlotte (Head of Marketing), Frances (Head of Insights) and Laura (Head of Customer Operations) about their views on working in a tech start-up.
Did you always want to work in the tech industry?
Laura: No! I wanted to be a nature reserve ranger, or formula one driver, or something cool and outdoors.
Charlotte: Not exactly… I did an English degree at university and actually moved to London to study Shakespeare at the Globe!
Frances: No. I studied Japanese at University and my first job after graduating was selling handbags in a shop in Paris. I didn’t have any clear ideas about how my career might evolve!
How did you get started – what experiences led you to your role at Moneybox?
Laura: I finished uni and worked in a bar for a while. I loved the fast-paced nature of hospitality and the ‘getting stuff done’ element, but not the 5am finishes. The start-up nature of Moneybox means I get stuff done and also learn a lot!
Charlotte: My first full time role was in the communications & strategy team at DMGT. I met Moneybox co-founder Charlie Mortimer there and we ended up working together on an early FinTech startup which was acquired by MoneySuperMarket. I looked after the mobile team there for a few years before joining Moneybox.
Frances: I got into analytics and data science at dunnhumby, the customer science company behind Tesco clubcard. I was lucky to be surrounded by some super-talented and open-minded people who gave me opportunities to work on all sorts of great projects. Moving to the customer science team at MoneySuperMarket exposed me to open-banking technology where I realised the huge potential these innovations have in helping people make the most of their finances. I believe that Moneybox takes this to a new level. We’re trying to help a generation invest for their future through smart tools and technology. I’m really excited to be part of it!
What do you think is the best part of being a woman in the tech industry?
Laura: It’s great to get to work with like-minded people, who are challenging the industry and doing our bit to help our generation get on the property ladder or achieve their financial goals.
Charlotte: I went to an event a few years ago where Martha Lane Fox talked about the importance of the team behind a company / product representing the needs of its customers. She gave the example of when the Apple Health Kit first launched, there was nothing about women’s health because no one on the engineering team was female. If you’re trying to build a product which anyone can use, I think it’s really important to have a range of different perspectives in the process of creating it.
Frances: Technology is about creating products and services that enhance people’s lives. Whatever the field (be it fintech, healthtech, edtech etc.), innovating to make the world a better place is exciting! Unfortunately, the tech industry is quite male-dominated. I’m lucky that I’ve never felt any barriers to entry based on my gender. However, I do feel a responsibility to encourage those who perhaps haven’t had the same experience to get involved! I often participate in events that promote women in tech and invite anyone with any questions to get in touch!
What do you wish you had known?
Laura: “Stop apologising for what you know and start being proud of it” – our awesome product manager, Ashleigh’s wise words. Definitely something I’ m guilty of!
Charlotte: Don’t be scared of taking a leap into the unknown. The average person starting their career now will have more than 10 different jobs in their lifetime. If you’re interested in something, go for it. It doesn’t matter if you don’t have a strict five-year plan so long as you’re learning and finding out what motivates you.
Frances: Technology isn’t something to be scared of and anyone can get involved! In fact, the more diverse tech teams are, the better the products and services they produce.