Keri Venketroyalu – Graduate
So, you’re currently studying in durban or maritzburg. YOU'RE GRADUATING SOON AND thinking about a career in joburg but don't know what to expect FROM THE BIG, BUZZING CITY. SOUND FAMILIAR? Meet keri - A DURBANITE GRAD WHO TOOK THE LEAP TO START her journey AT entelect
Hi, I’m Keri and I wanted to share my journey to Johannesburg. When I initially started applying to companies in South Africa, I knew that Durban didn’t have what I wanted in terms of career growth and opportunities. Sadly, it lacks considerably in terms of STEM opportunities.
How did you find out about Entelect?
When I started applying to universities, I discovered Entelect. I fell in love with the company the day that I read The Lore of Entelect. I remember standing in the kitchen and reading The Lore to my mum while she cooked. The more I read about Entelect, the more I fell in love with the idea of working there. I knew that I had found a company that encompassed my core values. After further research, I stumbled upon a video that featured Sheldon, one of Entelect’s General Managers. He spoke about how the youth is his priority and how important it is to educate them. That was the cherry on the top for me. I am an extremely indecisive person but somehow, there and then, I knew that this was the company for me. I knew that it meant that I had to move away from Durban, away from my family, but my heart was captured.
WHAT WAS THE INTERVIEW PROCESS LIKE?
The interview process was super cool. My first chat with the company was over Skype to see if they were going to be a fit for me. Then, they flew me up to Jo'burg for a face to face interview and after that, an offer arrived.
HOW DID YOU FEEL WHEN YOU GOT OFFERED A software engineer ROLE?
When I initially got the offer from Entelect, I was super excited! Then I started to stress about where I’m going to stay. I remember looking at a Melrose Arch map and asking family members who live in Johannesburg about the different areas. It’s difficult to choose a property to stay in when you have never seen the area before. However, I did not have to worry about that, Entelect had me covered.
Tell us about the move from Durban to Johannesburg?
I'm 21. Moving up to Johannesburg was rough, I’m not going to sugar-coat it. However, it has been the greatest learning experience. Being away from my family has taught me how to be self-sufficient and independent. Even though I relied heavily on detailed instructions from my mum on how to do certain things, I can safely say that I am finally on my own two feet. Being away from my immediate family after living with them my entire life was also a big change. I rely on video calls, and seeing them like this gives me peace of mind.
HOW WAS your experience at BOOT CAMP - Entelect's graduate training programme?
I was a mere graduate, straight out of university, starting my first job with no working experience and feeling a little concerned. I had heard about Entelect's Boot Camp and knew it was going to be tough. However, it was going to set me up to succeed so knew I would give it my all. Be prepared to learn as much as you can from the technical people at Entelect. Challenge them, amuse them and most of all, have fun. Boot Camp was terrifying. I spent almost every hour that I was awake trying to fulfil deadlines that seemed impossible. However, it was incredibly rewarding (both from a soft skills and technical skills basis). Prior to Entelect, I had never worked in a team so the best part for me was learning how to build relationships with people. I had new technologies thrown at me constantly and my takeaway from that is that one should never be afraid when learning something new.
What projects are you working on now?
I recently joined the Service Desk team. We are basically a team that handles a lot of projects for a whole lot of clients. I am in a team that lives out the core values of Entelect daily. Everyone always pushes each other further and wants each other to succeed. In terms of my own growth, someone that I work closely with told me to learn to be bold. His voice is constantly in my head, inspiring me in both my personal and work life. We also have a ton of fun. Shortly after joining Service Desk, I learnt that my Team Lead interviews people with a banana. Want to know what that is? Join us and maybe he’ll interview you! I also learnt that he is great at pranking people so I’m not sure if I am more excited or scared (LOL).
You recently attended a career day in Kwa-Zulu Natal, representing Entelect. How was that?
Being an extremely sentimental person, seeing people from there touched my heart. If you are from UKZN and are interested in moving up here, the main thing that you must worry about is not having enough winter clothes.
Entelect is even better than I imagined. It is my home and the people are my family. I have been at the company now for almost a year and I can honestly say that moving here was the best decision that I made. I always found it difficult to fit in, but at Entelect, I have finally found my place.