What a difference a year makes.
I find it hard to believe that Elm Solutions, the IT Company I co-founded with two friends in June 2014, is One today! Like any first time parents, we are very proud of our baby and it’s achievements in its infancy. We have faced all the normal challenges of having a new born; the long hours, the acute sleep deprivation, the teething problems, the self-doubting and, above all, the daily rate in which you face new experiences and challenges. But, like most first time parents, we are successfully meandering through and we look at what we have created to date with a sense of pride and accomplishment. This first year has been all about learning and teaching in equal measures and it has been a most enjoyable journey. We are putting a strong emphasis on ensuring that we are instilling our core values in our off-spring from the onset and we are seeing the company culture and values come to fruition in the five staff that we have hired throughout the year; our baby is growing so fast!
Elm Solutions is an IT Company that focuses on creating innovative IT solutions at affordable prices for our clients. Elm has a mantra of “casual professionalism” which we seek as a trait of all our employees. Our ethos balances professional and quality deliveries to our client with personable and approachable employees. Our staff are from diverse backgrounds including Engineering, Computer Science, Economics, Business Management, Business Information Systems and Environmental Resource Management but the commonality is that we share a passion for making a difference to the world using Information Technology. It may sound aspirational and for some it probably is a little too implausible, but Elm Solutions firmly believe that we can make a positive difference by creating innovative IT solutions that have not been created before. Diversity is the key to innovation and bringing different thinkers together to collaborate can lead to some great ideas; so watch this space.
My final thought on my review of our first year is one of a personal nature. If someone had told me when I left school in 2003 to study Business and German that I would end up in the IT sector, in any capacity, I would have laughed. However, if someone had explained to me that there was such a range of opportunities within IT for logical and analytical thinkers my curiosity would have been piqued. There is a lot of emphasis in the media currently on the fact that Science, technology, engineering and maths (collectively known as Stem) has a “women problem”. Out of almost 118,000 people working in Stem in Ireland, just a quarter are women. As the sole female in the three “man” start-up team the statistic supports the reality. However, my experience working in Stem as a women has been extremely positive; I have met some brilliant minds, I have learned about things that I didn’t know existed and I have been able to apply my skills in an industry that is exciting, challenging and holds so much opportunity for both men and women. As Elm Solutions grows, I hope that I can become more actively involved in supporting the idea of women in Stem and educating young woman on the opportunities that are to be availed of in the IT sector.
I am excited about the weeks and months ahead for the team at Elm Solutions. We are on a journey of discovery that could take us many places but as the inspiring Helen Keller once said “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all”. We are ready for the adventure.
- Elaine Kelly is one of Elm Solutions co-founders. Elaine, a Board Director, is an IT project manager with 7 years’ experience in Solution Delivery.