Murray Crease, Head of Development in the Edinburgh office of Scott Logic, a software development company, spoke at our PhD-employer networking event at the start of October. He told students attending that:
- the company is always interested in talking to PhD students (from many subject areas) who are motivated to work in software development. They’re happy to talk informally about potential opportunities.
- that they are open to interviewing a year before the likely completion of the PhD and will hold the position open. This gives the student the space to complete their studies without having to worry about job hunting in those frantic last few months.
I thought you’d be interested in reading a post on the Scott Logic blog about their recent hires of PhD graduates in neuroscience, physics and maths. You can find it at the link below or I’ve copied the whole text underneath.
From the blog:
Scott Logic welcomes influx of PhDs
We’re proud to have welcomed four academics to bolster our high-calibre workforce in recent weeks. The new starters, all of whom are based in our Newcastle development centre, joined Scott Logic as software developers during October, the most recent starting just today!
Two of the new developers, Michael, 28, and Paul, 27, completed their studies safe in the knowledge they had a job to go to, as both accepted their offers of employment around a year ago.
Michael, from Cramlington in Northumberland, who has a PhD in systems neuroscience from Newcastle University, even attended last year’s Christmas party in an effort to get to know his new colleagues well in advance of his first day.
He said: “The job offer from Scott Logic took the pressure off. A lot of the academics around me were stressing throughout the final year of the research, right up until the end in some cases, and some had put off job-hunting until they completed their doctorate.
“As I had a job lined up, it meant I could take a short break and spend some relaxation time with my wife Ashley after my PhD, rather than having to begin the search.”
Similarly, Paul, from Sunderland, who has just completed his PhD in neuroscience at Newcastle University, focusing on the brain’s interaction with and interpretation of 3D technology said: “I was offered the job in October 2015, and that meant I could relax somewhat. It focused my attention to help make my research more enjoyable.”
After a couple of months of respite, during which keen sportsman Paul also met several of his team mates at the Scott Logic summer party, the pair are enjoying their transition into industry so far.
Michael, who initially studied Physics at the University of York before completing an MSc in Computer Science at Imperial College London and converting to an MSc in Advanced Computer Science at Newcastle University, said: “It’s a steep learning curve, but not too dissimilar in many ways to my PhD, which looked into the nitty gritty of how the brain works, in particular focusing on the visual cortex.”
And Paul, who had been keen to remain in his native North East as he prepares to become a father, added: “I’m still very much learning the ropes, but the work is very interesting and everyone has been very friendly. I’m particularly enjoying the problem solving aspects of the role.”
Originally from Loughborough, Thomas, 26, completed an MPhys in Physics at Durham University before moving on to a PhD in Particle Physics, also at Durham. He also became aware of Scott Logic several months ago, and accepted an offer early in 2016.
He said: “As I spent so much time working on learning simulations and programming these for my thesis, it made natural sense to become a computer scientist, and I came across Scott Logic at a STEM careers fair and spoke to one of its volunteers.
“I was keen to stay in the North East and I really like the company; everyone seems pretty relaxed. So far it’s been quite a transition, but very interesting and lots to do, with more flexibility than I expected having come from an academic background.” Thomas is now keen to get involved in our work on big data.
This morning, the trio have been joined by Lithuanian maths graduate Andrius, 32, who came to England in 2008 to gain an MSc in software engineering from the University of York, before completing his PhD in computer science at Newcastle University last year.
Keen reader Andrius, who was referred to Scott Logic by a friend already working here, said: “I’m looking forward to building good systems that we can be proud of. I’m somewhat of a perfectionist and I am most happy when I get a really good outcome in what I’m doing.
“I’m looking forward to going back to coding and using the latest technologies and approaches to do my work.”
The quartet are in good company, as several of our technologists have higher degrees, including several PhDs, helping us remain at the cutting edge of technology.
Recruitment Manager John Wright said: “We’re incredibly proud of our track record in attracting gifted problem solvers to our consultancy, and it’s been great to welcome four such individuals to the team during October alone.
“We hope Michael, Thomas, Paul and Andrius feel at home here, and we’re excited to see them apply their considerable skills to our client projects in due course. In the meantime we’re always keen to hear from anyone in academia who may be considering the move into industry.
“As we’ve demonstrated in the case of Michael and Paul in particular, we’re happy to start the process quite a way before the completion of your studies, so don’t hesitate to contact us for an informal chat.”