Welcome to another edition of IntelePeer’s Tech Tuesday series. This week Sarah Adams, Payroll Manager, shares some thoughtful career advice, her journey into the tech industry, and her hopes for AI in the future.
1. How did you end up in the Tech Industry?
Prior to working for IntelePeer I was working as the Director of Payroll and Finance for a nursing home management company. I was eager to get out of that industry which was very stagnant. I was looking for jobs and saw Payroll Manager for IntelePeer listed. In doing my research of the company I was very pleased to see a forward-moving company. In this industry we must be forever evolving and cannot afford to get stuck in the past and old ways of doing business.
2. What AI or machine learning capabilities are you most looking forward to?
AI can mean making our jobs more efficient, if done correctly. I understand that AI may bring with it a level of fear for job security. However, I am looking forward to this technology advancing the payroll processing systems to reduce manual input and therefore reducing the chance of human error.
If these systems can handle updates and changes, plus discover hidden trends it can become invaluable to Finance and Human Resources. This may allow us to improve business functions and support individual growth more readily. The ability to quickly provide insight and trends and automate time-consuming, repetitive tasks will free up departments to focus on growth instead of being bogged down in administrative tasks.
3. What was the most challenging aspect of your career and how did you overcome it?
The most challenging aspect of my career is keeping up on the ever-changing regulations. It was particularly challenging during the beginning of the COVID-19 Pandemic. With the government’s new mandates and regulations changing almost daily to protect both employees and employers, it was difficult to know exactly how to handle so many new situations.
It took a lot of research and collaboration to find out exactly how to be in compliance with the latest changes while continuing to be mindful of the company’s the employee’s welfare. We overcame these hurdles by creating a COVID-19 task force, which included myself along with the HR Director, Legal, Director of Operations, and Registered Dietician. Having this diverse group allowed all aspects of regulations and bills to be discussed and addressed. We found ourselves compliant and fair.
4. Any advice for women who want to join the tech industry?
My advice to women who want to join the tech industry is two fold: To collaborate while also being an advocate for yourself. There is a whole network of people who know more or different things than you. There is a lot to learn from those that have been in the industry for many years, as well as those that are fresh to it.
Innovation happens with foundational knowledge and fresh takes. But knowing when you have an idea or answer and being able to speak up and not just sit in the background waiting for things to happen around you is so important. The next big idea might just be yours.
5. What advice would you give your younger self who is just starting in the workforce?
Not everyone is going to like you. And that is ok. It is only your job to act professionally and get your job done. If these are done and you conduct yourself with grace and keep your composure you will be just fine at the end of the day.