Brandon Sibanda – Standard Bank - Digital Platform
So, Brandon, what were you doing before joining Entelect?
I was still in school before having the privilege of joining the Tribe.
When did you start at Entelect?
I joined in 2017 as a graduate after having been part of the Entelect Foundation. It is awesome to be part of a company that really knows how to give back and help the community.
How did it come about that you joined the company? Can you describe this journey with us?
I first found out about Entelect Foundation when I was in Grade 11 from my uncle who actually worked for Entelect at the time. The Entelect Foundation was just starting out at the time, so I didn’t have any expectations as to what would come out of it. I already had aspirations of someday becoming a software developer and as time went on I got to know more about Entelect and what it was trying to achieve with The Foundation. The company did not just want to grow their internal people but wanted to grow members of the community, providing skills and education that would aid and lead to self-sufficiency.
They believed that education had the power to change our nation, and thus formed The Entelect Foundation - an initiative designed to provide support to the underprivileged in the community; be it financial aid, school work or counselling.
When I joined the programme, I was in the science stream in high school (Allanridge Secondary School) and at the time I had very little exposure to the industry. Joining The Entelect Foundation gave me access to people that could guide and mentor me on the path that I had chosen. Fast forward to the end of my second year in varsity (University of Johannesburg), I had the opportunity to do some vacation work at Entelect in 2015. Those were the most eye-opening two months in terms of my career. I got to work with some of the most talented software engineers on this here fine planet! I was also exposed to a real-life working environment which was fantastic.
So back to The Foundation. There were many people that I met and who inspired me and some that played a key part in my journey. Warren (Entelect's IT Operations Manager) who guided me along the way and made sure I was always OK. Janine (Software Engineer), who assisted me with technical questions and provided advice on various topics, such as finance which I then applied when I started working. Hennie (Technical Lead), who guided me through my vacation work and even continued to provide assistance when I was back in varsity. And last but not least, Jake (AKA my go-to-guy) who assisted me in and outside of the Foundation and would gladly lend me his phone to test my apps on during my vacation work.
During my time in Foundation, I got to hear about the Graduate Boot Camp Programme and was very keen to join it. Boot Camp was the worst and best time of my career, as it prepared me for real-world projects. One of the most vital lessons I learnt was how to interact with clients and the importance of clear communication during meetings and presentations.
I officially joined in 2017 as a Software Engineer.
My aspirations and dreams of wanting to become a software engineer had come true!
What has been the most challenging aspect of your career at Entelect?
Getting to understand the whole business environment and how it fits in with the work we do. All I ever wanted was to write code and work on cool things but there is a whole part of it (the business side) that I have had to learn. This has been a great growth opportunity for me.
What has been your best day at work?
There have been many great days but what I will always remember as being right up there, is when I released my first feature at Standard Bank. It was an incredible feeling being able to deliver value on the project and to the client. I knew then that my career as a Software Engineer was going to be a successful one as I had the support and help from the other Entelectuals in my team.
What’s something that happened that can only happen here at Entelect?
Calling anyone in management “broheim” ☺. From what I have heard it seems to be a career limiting move in other places except at Entelect (I hope 🤔)
What’s something you are most proud of?
I love my family and will always be proud of them. That's why I feel like I really belong at Entelect, as the culture is something I really identify with. We really are a tribe of tribes over here. We share and celebrate our successes and help each other through the challenges. If that's not what being a family means, then I have missed something.
What’s the funniest thing you’ve seen or experienced at Entelect?
Have you seen those Graduate Boot Camp videos? Oh, my word they are hysterical. I could not stop laughing. It reminds me of a time in Foundation and then being part of Boot Camp myself. I recall how tough it was but it definitely sets you up for success. I am proof that the programme really does work. I wish all the new graduates this year all the best. I hear we took on close to 50 graduates - I can't believe how the company has grown since I started.
What is one of your favourite quotes/sayings?
"Above all things, always respect the process…"
What would you like to achieve next?
In the short term, I want to continue to grow my skills and hone my craft. I believe with the amount of internal and external training offered at Entelect that this is achievable. In turn, this will assist me in furthering my career here - maybe with a promotion sometime soon (wink wink nudge nudge). With regards to the rest, I'm still trying to figure it out.