Kieran Fleming, Product Development Engineer, Intel

Hero image for Kieran Fleming, Product Development Engineer, Intel

Degree subject Bachelor of Engineering (Hons) in Electronic & Computer Engineering, NUI Galway, 2014
Job title Product Development Engineer
Employer Intel

Could you provide us with a summary
of how you became interested in a
career in the engineering sector?

I have always had a desire to
understand how things work, and
became interested in computers at an
early age. Engineering seemed a natural
fit, as I wasn't sure what I'd like to do
after college, but felt that engineering
would keep as many options as possible
open to me. Many of the skills learned
are transferable to other roles, and it
has given me more time to consider
what area I’d like to specialise in.

My degree afforded me an excellent
foundation for a career in hardware or
software engineering. Besides
understanding the physics behind
computers and learning to build basic
circuits, I developed programming
skills, and my project work often
combined software and hardware in a
complete system. While considering
applying for my current position, I saw
that the skills learned in my course
were highly relevant to the role, and
this helped the interview process.
After an initial phone call where I was
invited to the interview, I knew it was
a job I wanted. I was confident that I
had the required skillset, which I
aimed to demonstrate in my
interview. Fortunately I received an
offer within a couple of weeks.

What’s been one of the biggest
challenges so far and what did it
teach you about yourself?

Time-management is among the
more difficult aspects of my job.
Working with several different
processor families means I’m helping
multiple groups involved in the
manufacturing and testing of
individual products. Unfortunately, it
isn’t possible to do everything for
everyone and requests for analysis or
root-causing an issue can come at the
same time from separate teams. It’s
important to be able to prioritise
tasks, and to let people know if I can’t
do something. These experiences
have shown me that I’m a good
communicator – I do my best to
understand what’s needed, and if I
find I can’t help, I try to find out who
can.

What advice would you have for
students and graduates seeking to
pursue a similar career path?

If you are unsure about what job to
apply for, keep an open mind and look
at the skills used in a position, rather
than the job title itself. Choosing
something connected to an area of
your course which you particularly
enjoy definitely makes things easier.
Engineering is so broad that there's no
need to be very specific in what you
want to do straight after college, and
there are enough diverse roles
available in Intel alone to ensure that
there will be opportunities throughout
your career to try something new.

How do you hope to see your career developing over the next few years?

I would love to gain more experience
working abroad. It's something I did in
college, and really enjoyed it. Intel has
sites all across the world, so I feel
there is scope for being assigned
somewhere for a few months or even
years. I'm looking forward to
continuing to meet new people and
expanding my network. All the while I
will gain insight into other roles,
which I might find myself pursuing.

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