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Meet the Women of Customertimes

At Customertimes, 32% of our Director, Delivery Head, and Practice Head roles are filled by women, so in our Women in Tech series, we are highlighting some of the brilliant women that work with us.  

Up first, Oleanne D’Souza, the Toronto-based Senior Salesforce Consultant and Lead Business Analyst.  

 

How did you get your start in technology?  

I’ve been curious about technology and how things worked since I was very young. I used to take things apart and put them back together as a hobby, and when I was introduced to basic coding in elementary school, that fueled my curiosity even more.  

My university offered a double major in business and technology, and it also had a co-op program to expose us to different tech career options, so by the time I graduated, I had experience with start-ups, healthcare, airlines, financial services, automotive, and consulting organizations. Most importantly though, I was introduced to Salesforce. I was hooked right away! 

CT recruited me, and since I joined the company, I’ve had the chance to hone my people and change management skills while implementing complex healthcare and technological solutions on a global scale.   

 

Has your role evolved since you joined the company?  

On my current project, I am the product manager and business lead. I work with our client’s business owners and the CT product team to understand the complexity of their business and build better solutions together.  

I was originally hired as a Senior Salesforce Consultant, and that evolved into my current role. The consultant mindset – including my understanding of the Salesforce platform – has helped me increase my capacity to lead teams and establish better requirement management processes.  

 

What do you love about your job? 

I love CT’s emphasis on personal learning and development. Here, I completed my SAFe Scrum Master Certification, got 3x Salesforce-certified, and started working on the next certification.  

I also appreciate being able to work remotely, which has proven to be invaluable during the pandemic. Most importantly though, I value the quality of the people I work with every day. They’re incredibly smart, and we learn a lot from each other, which is very important in an environment like this.  

 

Why did you decide to pursue a career in technology?  

Like I said, I’ve always been a curious person who likes to fix things, and that’s what drew me to technology. I’ve had some great mentors along the way, and the great thing about technology is that there’s always something to learn!  

When I was younger, I had a long list of career interests that ranged from becoming a cardiologist to an international lawyer to a circus trapeze artist (alas, a dream I had to let go of!). The great thing about technology consulting is that it really meets all my needs – there’s never a dull day. I always have new challenges to solve and great people to solve them with.  

 

What has been your most exciting project at CT?  

I worked on a healthcare project recently that was exceptionally challenging due to an aggressive timeline and differing viewpoints among the stakeholders. We were asked to transform the way data was managed for their patient services department, and unbeknownst to us, this project had been started and stopped several times before we were brought in.  

Customertimes was new to this particular business system, but we were able to establish a structure and create new communication paths to help their systems work together. We used Salesforce Health Cloud Lightning patient services data management and successfully aligned 11 different stakeholders’ systems. It was a day of joyous online celebration when we went live in less than 6 months!  

The client and their partners were so happy with the outcome that they’ve continued to work with us to this day.  

 

Why do you think now is a great time to pursue a career in technology?  

Because of the pandemic, we’ve seen an acceleration in the need for technology. Technology is critical for every industry, which makes a career in tech a great, sustainable career choice for anyone with a learning mindset.  

I really encourage women and other minority gender identities to reach out and network with people that have experience in the fields you are interested in. LinkedIn and Salesforce events are powerful tools to help you connect with people and set up some virtual coffee chats. In the tech space, most people are more than happy to share their experience and help you get to where you want to be. 

If you’re curious about Salesforce, start with the free Salesforce resources on Trailhead. Keep an eye out also for free Salesforce webinars that offer discounts on certifications and expert-level training. 

And don’t be afraid to apply for jobs! As long as you meet 60% of the requirements, you are a more-than-worthy candidate.  

 

What’s your strategy for successfully managing your team? 

I’ve picked up a few things from successful leaders that I’ve worked with throughout my career:  

  • Practice open, empathetic listening to understand your team’s strengths and opportunities for improvement 
  • Set achievable goals and roles based on team strengths, and check in regularly to help your team follow through with their plans 
  • Understand the complexities of each project, but also keep in mind that the big picture is very important. Communicating openly about any potential issues/risks helps keep everyone on the same page. 

 

What do you like to do outside of work? 

It depends on the weather! When it’s warm, I like to garden and grow food with my family. I also like to hike and travel to expose myself to different languages, cultures, and food. I listen to podcasts when I’m at the gym or doing yoga. I enjoy cooking and baking as well as music, dance, and the arts … this winter I’ve been honing my ice-skating skills, which is very meditative but also very challenging! I’d appreciate any tips here! 

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