Nick Maddock - Barclays Radbroke Technology Spring Week 2018

“There’s only one bank and technology company I want to work for now.”

After months of hard work and pushing myself in challenging environments, I found myself at the technology headquarters of one of the world’s largest banks. Everyone was incredibly friendly and welcoming at Radbroke. The people I met spoke with such confidence and ambition about their projects, it made me feel like everyone here wanted to succeed. There were graphic designers, zoologists and people who’d never gone to university all enjoying working with each other; which proved you don’t have to be a computer scientist to work in technology at Barclays.

Something wonderful about the Radbroke campus; is that it is all the more stimulating when you immerse yourself among people who have diverse interests and talents. The most exhilarating conversation I had during one of the social networking evenings was with a project manager who shared my passion for history and we happily exchanged titles of books we thought the other might enjoy. It can’t be understated how brilliantly organised the social events were; there’s no better way to learn about a company than from the people who are driven to improve and develop it.

It can take years to find a purpose in life, but I’ve always found fulfilment in creating. That’s why I felt so confident applying to Barclays’ Technology Spring Week. I knew I wanted to succeed and create, and financial technology presented a new challenge. The technology week allowed me to learn all I could about artificial intelligence. And that’s why I applied – so I could see what Barclays was creating.

Few experiences are impactful enough to inspire confidence and motivation in one’s self. Lifting a sports trophy, raising your arms to an applauding audience, yes. Though I’d never expected to get motivation from a 1-week insight. I’d say a key lesson for me is that it isn’t the comfortable situations one excels in; it’s the unfamiliar and challenging ones.

Going to Spring Week gives you more than experience to put on your CV. It encourages you to network with talented people and will show you how satisfying it is to work here. I had the pleasure of shadowing a project manager and a business analyst, who introduced me to teams across the business. The final day was an unforgettable experience. My presentation group had people from business, economics and chemistry backgrounds, as well as computer science. The highlight of the week was that we didn’t need gallons of coffee or all-nighters to come up with an original presentation idea. It was fun because it was all delivered in the style of a televised debate, rather than a lecture. The payoff was monumental; some of us barely knew the basics of AI at the start of the week – let alone the impact it has on modern finance – but we placed second in the group and had sold artificial intelligence to our judges. More importantly, we had developed a passion for it.

The best bit is that I no longer find technology articles confusing or intimidating. I can’t thank the Radbroke team and recruiters enough; there’s only one bank and technology company I want to work for now, and that’s because of the people I’ve met whilst working at Barclays.