IT Helpdesk Specialist
Scottish Parliamenet

IT Helpdesk Specialist
Scottish Parliamenet

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Fiona A

00:00:03 My name’s Fiona A and I work at the Scottish Parliament as an IT Helpdesk Specialist.

00:00:08 That principally involves taking phone calls from either MSPs or their staff or Scottish parliamentary staff with some form of IT problem or a question.

00:00:20 I originally I applied for a short term contractor position that was because I had just moved up from the south of England and needed a job fairly quickly. I got that, the job was, or the contract was renewed several times and ultimately a permanent vacancy came up which I applied for in the normal way through the, through the advert in the Scotsman and was lucky enough to get it.

00:00:46 Before I came to the parliament I was doing an IT helpdesk job with Norwich Union down in Worthing on the south coast of England near Brighton.

00:00:56 I was very studious, very quiet, very good at my school work, so I was, directed, not so much directed in the subjects, the way the streaming worked for the classes you went into was based on our last exams at primary school, so I did well at primary school so I was put into a high class at secondary school which meant I automatically did certain subjects like Latin which was, not a lot, well it was quite good fun but I didn’t learn very much I’m afraid. No I didn’t really have a clue.

00:01:29 Wasn’t, vague notion of being a sculptor when I was eight, thought about art school but, I don’t know if I decided I wasn’t good enough or I got the idea that I might not make any money from that, so I probably picked up an idea that I needed to do a job that I could earn my living at, at some point, but I had no idea what that was going to be.

00:01:51 Went to lots and lots of careers fairs and, just confused myself with thinking that everything sounded really interesting and not getting any specific ideas on what I was going to do, so, I thought, I’ll go to university, that seems like a good way to get some breathing space, and I was a bit too young to join any of the armed forces which seemed another way of getting some breathing space, so. I did arts again a nice general subject where I could choose all sorts of things that interested me without having to decide right away what am I going to do at the end of it.

00:02:23 Victoria Wines part time sales assistant, first job that came up. I didn’t, I still didn’t really know what I wanted to do but I didn’t want to go into teaching, which is a general, it’s a sort of accepted thing to do if you’ve got a general degree but I didn’t want to do that so retail seemed like another good idea so, I had vague notions of maybe running Marks and Spencer’s one day, but, started with Victoria Wine because that’s where the job was.

00:02:49 I moved from perhaps not typically I moved from Victoria Wine to Mothercare, again a job came up at the right time in the right place, so that was an interesting jump. Yeah, stayed in retail for quite a long time, until I discovered that office work paid better and you were less likely to have annoyed customers actually coming into the shop and shouting at you. So I thought, oh that sounds, sounds interesting so that’s when I got into insurance work.

00:03:20 And from therein to the IT work because the customer service aspect of the insurance work was very helpful in that plus I had been training other staff in IT systems because I was just interested in it, and I, I like training I’m good at that. So I was able to use those skills in the IT section.

00:03:39 Being made redundant from the Scottish Ballet that was a pretty major one, it, it was a big influence in an unexpected way because I didn’t get much redundancy money so I went on holiday to Greece and I liked it so, I got a job where I’d been on holiday and stayed out there for the summer. Met a lot of lovely people, had a great time and also met my partner who’s from the south of England who I can’t really see how I would have bumped into him otherwise.

00:04:05 And I wish I’d got more work experience when I was at school, in different areas that would have maybe given me more of a taste of other things that I might want to try out later.

00:04:16 END

Fiona A works at the Scottish parliament as an IT Helpdesk Specialist. Fiona has liked to keep her options open in school, university and in work. That means she has had a variety of experiences in retail, offices and IT. Now she answers IT problem questions for MSPs, their staff or Scottish parliamentary staff.

More information about IT specialist managers

average salary

The UK average salary is £28,758

average weekly hours

There are 37.5 hours in the average working week

28%  female 
72%  male 

The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male

Future Employment

Future employment?

? IT specialist managers plan, organise, manage and coordinate the provision of specialist IT services and functions in an organisation.
Entrants usually possess a degree or equivalent qualification, although entry with other academic qualifications and/or significant relevant experience is possible. There is a variety of vocational, professional and postgraduate qualifications available.
  • Plans, coordinates and manages the organisation’s IT provision or a specialist area of IT activity;
  • Liaises with users, senior staff and internal/external clients to clarify IT requirements and development needs;
  • Takes responsibility for managing the development of a specialist aspect of IT provision such as user support, network operations, service delivery or quality control;
  • Supervises the technical team and coordinates training;
  • Plans and monitors work and maintenance schedules to ensure agreed service levels are achieved;
  • Reports on IT activities to senior management.
Employment by region
Top 10 industries for this job
Computer programming, etc 32483
Legal & accounting 27638
Retail trade 15202
Head offices, etc 14383
Information services 11599
Financial services 7316
Telecommunications 6922
Employment activities 6760
Specialised construction 5734
Public admin. & defence 5477
Employment status
Skill importance

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