Interview by Marija Butkovic @MarijaButkovic
Ima Miri is Women of Wearables ambassador in Sydney, Australia, and founder at Atar Dev which is a Technical consulting company based in Sydney Australia. She has over 13 years of experience in the tech industry. She’s passionate about creativity and innovation. In her own words “my best artistic moments are when I’m working on a new project to bring new ideas to life”. Learning new technologies and playing around with them to build awesome products is always interesting to Ima. Her mission is to bring more awareness about new tech trends and encourage more girls to learn new technologies and work with them.
Ima, welcome to our team! Tell us a bit more about yourself, your background and how you became interested in a world of technology.
I became interested in tech when I was 15 years old and my dad bought a pc with windows 2000 installed on it. I started programming with QuickBasic and flowcharts and fell in love with programming since then. I got my bachelors in software engineering in 2006 and started my career around the same time. Later in 2015, I studied Graduate Certificate in Business and Technology at the University of Technology Sydney while working fulltime. I worked in small companies and large corporates such as Fairfax media and eBay in Sydney. After 13 years of working in the tech industry, I left the corporate world in 2019 to start my entrepreneurial journey with running a Technical consulting company which provides Cloud, Mobile and AI solutions for small businesses.
How did you find out about Women of Wearables?
During mentoring and consulting different startups, I became friends with one of the WoW members and got familiar with the WoW community. Because WoW community is focused on new tech trends which I’m passionate about and work with them these days, I joined the community.
What are your projects you're working on at the moment?
I’m currently working on two different projects, the first one is a mobile app for an Australian based startup and the second one is an online marketplace which is web-based and built on AWS cloud. Also, I’m a technical mentor and assessor in an online educational website.
What was the biggest obstacle? How about biggest achievement?
My biggest challenges were finding clients and hiring the right contractors when I started my business. And I handled both through my network.
My biggest achievement is that I delivered two MVPs for two startups in less than four months while I had a one-year-old child.
What are the challenges of being a woman in the niche you are in?
There were many challenges during my career such as how to be heard within the team, how to negotiate on salary raise or how to ask for promotion especially when I knew I was more experienced and had more responsibilities in comparison to my male colleagues. I learnt to be strong and speak up whenever I should and it worked most of the time, especially for the salary raise ☺
Why is #WomenInTech movement important to you?
We need more women in tech because the diversity of ideas leads to faster growth in businesses. Fortunately, there are many technologies and areas to work on in the tech industry, we just need to raise awareness and encourage more women to study and work in the tech industry.
How does the tech ecosystem look in Sydney?
Tech industry is growing at a rapid pace in Australia, especially in Sydney. There are many tech startups and big tech companies in Sydney which are moving towards AI. However, the market still needs to grow more to be beneficial enough for businesses especially startups.
What will be your main goals as Women of Wearables Ambassador in Sydney?
I see a huge potential in the Sydney tech market to move towards AI, VR, AR and IoT. So, I would like to encourage more girls to re-skill with new tech trends such as AI, wearable tech, IoT, AR, VR. Because the future of the market is going towards these trends and we need to learn it now rather than later.
What will be the key trends in the tech industry in the next 5 years and where do you see it heading?
They key trends will be Artificial Intelligence, Robotic Process Automation, IoT and wearable techs, AR and VR. The reason for these trends is that they make most of the processes easier especially in health, agriculture and engineering.
Who are your 3 inspirational women / businesses in tech?
Jennifer Hyman CEO and Co-Founder at Rent the Runway. It’s amazing how she tackles with all the challenges at her startup journey such as fundraising while she was pregnant.
Melanie Perkins Co-founder and CEO of Canva. I like her success story and how she dedicated herself to bring her dream to reality.
Naomi Simson Co-Founder Big Red Group and Founder of RedBalloon in Australia. She’s also one of the judges in the SharkTank Australia. She’s very courageous and supportive of entrepreneurs.
This interview was conducted by Marija Butkovic, Digital Marketing and PR strategist, founder and CEO of Women of Wearables. She regularly writes and speaks on topics of wearable tech, fashion tech, IoT, entrepreneurship and diversity. Visit marijabutkovic.co.uk or follow Marija on Twitter @MarijaButkovic.