Think a job with Aussie supermarket giant Woolworths is all about stacking shelves and scanning barcodes? Meet three women working in cool tech roles at WooliesX – the young, digital-savvy face of one of Australia’s oldest retail businesses
In the inner-west of Sydney there’s a cool new office with tech start-up vibes – but the business is far from a start-up. We’ve all heard of Woolies but you might not have heard of WooliesX, the hub for everything high-tech at Woolworths and its subsidiaries. Think data analytics, app development, web design and more.
Intrigued, we visited the cool WooliesX offices and met three women in tech jobs to discover all about who they are and what they do!
A day in the life at WooliesX
Kathryn Moger is a Digital Product Manager. This is what her nine-to-five looks like
Katharyn says growing up at the start of the dotcom era showed her that technology and digital were changing the world.
“I wanted to be part of that future,” she says.
She studied computer science, has worked in various tech gigs and now, her current role as Digital Product Manager at WooliesX, means she’s part of the Woolworths app team.
“I get to work with a bunch of other specialists, like UX designers, developers and analysts to deliver great experiences for our app users,” she says.
7.30am Cuddles with her cat (priorities) while checking the latest stats on the Woolworths app from the previous day – such as sales figures and any customer feedback.
8.30am Walk to work and grab a morning coffee from her favourite barista (who has a parrot!). “I love living so close and being able to walk to work.”
9am “First thing, I check in with the team. There’s always lots of collaborating and meetings, for example we might need to be ready for increased traffic from an upcoming marketing campaign.”
10.30am “I might spend some of the morning building wireframes (simple visual representations) of any new features coming for the app.”
12pm “Grab lunch on the go!”
1pm “Spend some time checking and writing emails, and writing up a plan for what we’re going to work on next based on customer feedback and feedback from the team.”
3pm “In the afternoon I might present a new feature to the team. We all get together in a room for discussion and feedback for us to incorporate.”
5pm “I might have a mentoring session with someone in my team, or WooliesX often hosts meetups, with other product managers or digital enthusiasts.”
7pm “Walk home, make dinner and chill!”
As Customer Analytics Manager, Efrosini Savidis uses data to help Woolworths make better decisions
“Efrosini has strong feelings about the way her favourite subject, maths, is taught in schools – so much so, that after graduating a combined Bachelor of Science (Mathematics) and Finance at UTS in Sydney, she and a uni friend co-founded their own business called iSquared Learning that runs fun, hands-on maths classes in primary schools.
“We were really passionate about getting kids curious about STEM. We wanted to inspire young people to learn maths in a fun way that helps us understand our world! STEM is our future because it pervades every part of the rapidly changing world around us” she explains.
RELATED: Should I drop maths? Read this first
In this data-driven age, maths and coding are fundamental skills that will be invaluable for all sorts of careers. “The opportunities are limitless,” she says.
They’re skills that have led to a stellar career path for Efrosini, who is now Customer Analytics Manager at WooliesX. “I find ways to use data to inform business decisions, and to measure business initiatives by relating everything back to the customer,” she explains.
And with 12 million loyalty customers across all of Woolworths’ businesses, there’s no shortage of variety in Efrosini’s job. “Every day there’s a different problem to solve.”
Efrosini’s hot career tip? Take every opportunity you can. “You’ll graduate with the same qualification as everybody else in your degree, so look for opportunities to do things that will help you stand out,” she says.
You can career crush on Efrosini at LinkedIn
Android developer Zarah Dominguez says support networks are great for women in STEM – and they don’t even need to be IRL
Zarah says she wasn’t one of those people who always knew what she wanted to be.
Growing up in a rural community in the Philippines (watch the YouTube above for her inspiring story!), Zarah was always good at maths, so her dad – an engineer – suggested she might want to follow in his footsteps.
While Zarah did get a degree in engineering, she now works as an android app developer, something she largely taught herself to do.
In her role as a Senior Android Developer at WooliesX, Zarah spends a lot of time writing code for Woolworths’ online shopping app, used by 1.2 million people. “I love getting feedback on how the app helps real people – I always love working on something that people actually use,” says Zarah, who is also a Google Developer Expert, which means she’s been recognised by Google for having exemplary expertise in her field.
As a woman working in a male-dominated area, Zarah says she finds being a part of online networks of women android developers from all over the world extremely helpful and supportive. “It happens a lot that I’m the only woman in the team,” she says. “So having these women to bounce ideas off and even vent to is really helpful.”
Zarah’s hot career tip: “Whatever you love – just do it, and stick with it. Also find your support network, and they don’t even have to be in the same geographical place!”
You can follow Zarah on Twitter @zarahjutz
This article was originally pulished in Careers with STEM: Digital Retail special edition. Read the full emagazine for free here
This article is brought to you in partnership with WooliesX
Check out our women in STEM page for more inspiring profiles and stories
Author: Gemma Chilton
Gemma has a degree in journalism from the University of Technology, Sydney and spent a semester studying environmental journalism in Denmark. She has been writing about science and engineering for over a decade.