Chantel Lineham Blog 002 Chantel Lineham Blog 002

My Journey In Tech

As part of our commitment to our Women in Tech agenda, we had the pleasure of interviewing Chantel, who is nearing her impressive 10-year milestone at Checkatrade! Throughout her time at Checkatrade, Chantel has consistently pushed boundaries, moving up the ranks to her recent promotion as Associate Software Engineer. We sat down with Chantel to delve into her experiences at Checkatrade and uncover the motivations behind her bold career journey.

You’re about to celebrate your 10-year anniversary with us at Checkatrade, congratulations! This is a huge milestone so tell us about your journey – where did you start?

My first role was in Membership Advice, which was very customer focused. I spent time vetting our members and ensuring they got the best out of their membership. I’d learnt a great deal about the company and the systems in place and after two years, I wanted a new challenge. That’s when an opportunity arose within IT Support. With very little technical knowledge and experience at the time, it was a big risk for me to completely transition into something new. But after being offered the new role, I very quickly got stuck in. This is where I found my passion for testing and now software development. It's crazy to think how quick these 10 years have passed but also about my journey within Checkatrade and the changes the company have been through in that time. It really has been amazing to be a part of. 

You’ve recently moved into the exciting new role of “Associate Engineer.” What inspired you to pursue a career in technology and how did you get to this point?

A few years ago, the team went to Google for a Hackathon. This was the first one I attended and didn’t know what to expect. You are given a task and you and your team go away and work on it to see what you can produce. I knew there wasn’t going to be anything for me to QA so I thought to myself “how can I get the most out of this experience?”. I first started coding when learning test automation but found huge excitement when I made my first UI change. I was SO happy and couldn’t believe how much I learnt in such a short amount of time. This made me want to understand the code base better and wanted to learn even more. I wanted to become more technical; I am very inquisitive and like to know how and why things are done. With this I started upskilling and studying in my own time. Having built a great relationship with my team they always support my progress and are always willing to give me guidance.

What advice would you give to women who are considering a career in technology?

100% go for it. Have the confidence in your ability to believe you can do it with or without experience. Engineering is constantly evolving and there is so much material online that can help, but from experience doing it on the job and getting stuck in is by far the most valuable. Don't be afraid to take risks or feel uncomfortable because this is where you grow the most. I believe you can achieve anything you want, but this takes great determination and dedication. There have been countless hours of studying and researching to achieve the position I am currently at now but this is something that is constantly ongoing as it's an ever-changing industry.

What do you see in the future for women in tech and what changes would you like to see in the industry?

I believe the future of women within tech holds great promise. Over the past 10 years, I have seen an exponential growth within Checkatrade. It does require overcoming barriers of inclusivity within the industry but with the support of female communities that are online I do see a positive change in the number of women entering the industry.

 Lastly, do you have any hidden talents or skills that people might not know about?

Throughout my life I have always been dedicated to sports, I played football to a high level when I was younger. A 6am gym session is my non-negotiable; I love being set up for the day and is a great boost for my wellbeing. My family and friends are my world and mean everything to me. I love to socialise, travel, and live my life to its fullest as well as being a secret shopaholic.

If you fancy taking the plunge like Chantel did, we have plenty of opportunities across Checkatrade and we’d love to hear from you! Visit our vacancy page to find out more.