How Joining IBM’s University Program Gave Me the Skills and Confidence to Achieve Great Things

Today’s blog on the IBM students and graduate series features Uweis Salim, a Technical Support Specialist with IBM Global Technology Services (GTS) responsible for managing support delivery process.

Uweis Salim.jpg
Uweis Salim

Uweis holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Statistics and Programming from Kenyatta University. He graduated from eMobilis Mobile Technology School as a Mobile and Web applications developer and is a certified Worklight MobileFirst Application Specialist. He also worked as a backend developer and a project implementation and customer support for two years before joining IBM.

In this interview, Uweis shares his IBM Skills Academy story with us.

Why did you apply to the IBM Skills Academy?

Right from my childhood, my dream was to become either an inventor, a software developer or a technologist. Whatever it was, no matter what it took I had to reach that goal. I just want to make people’s lives better and easier with technology. As the years went by, I realized IBM was a global leader in technological innovations and a company with a strong dedication to making lives better with its inventions and innovations. When I got the opportunity to be involved with the IBM Skills Academy, I was highly elated as I knew it was a unique privilege to get hands on experience under the program.

Tell us about your experience on the program.

I have been supporting some of IBM’s clients’ accounts in the Africa market, ensuring they get support when they need it, efficiently and per the contract. It’s a complicated process having to know the support process itself and the parties involved: raising calls, and reaching out to Front End engineers and Business Partners to ensure everything runs smoothly. There is immense pressure, ups and downs but I have come to love it especially when the customer is satisfied after everything we have done for them.

I also initiate projects and solutions that can help streamline the support process in order to help the clients to take such projects. This has been a major challenge for me but I learn something every day and I know I am doing work that matters.

What do you like about the program?

I joined an elite team of experts where I am supported; I have the opportunity to raise my ideas and concerns to the team and my manager knowing that they will value it; I have a mentor who is as much interested in my well-being as my career development; I am always guided and trusted to manage whatever responsibilities are assigned to me – as someone experiencing all this in a university program, I can’t help but have so much confidence and excitement to make IBM even better than it is today.

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Where do you see your career going next?

As a Technical Support Services Specialist, I monitor customer’s queries and ensure the customers gets support when they need it. I run new projects and come up with new ways and ideas to ensure all our customers are satisfied and that IBM meets what it had promised to the client. However, every day is a learning experience at IBM. I am not ruling out finding myself as a support lead in the future. I want to grow with the organization and take lead in major projects and initiatives. With all the support I get from my manager, and the liberty to put forward my ideas – I know the sky is the limit.

How do you overcome challenges at work?

I have learnt to think creatively and adapt to new processes and new roles which are sometimes different from what you expect and what you are used to do.

IBM is such a massive company, there is a lot of operations and a lot of people you have to be involved with that are located far away geographically, that sometimes to make things happen is a challenge. However, the supportive work environment at IBM makes it possible for me to have signature experiences every day and also find workarounds in every responsibility.

What can you share with applicants who are looking for a University Program?

Listen, think, and be innovative. Research and familiarize yourself with the company’s programs and solutions and get to know what they do and are focused on.

Look for a company that is dedicated to every client’s success and its employee’s well-being. The working culture (work life balance), integrity, and career building strategies are among what makes IBM the best place to work.

Log on to IBM Skills Academy website to know more about the Program and don’t forget to follow us on Facebook.

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Discover what you can do at IBM: http://ibm.co/jobs

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