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Supervisory spin for web man

Edmond Leung, a solution architect at Udomain Web Hosting Company, is moving up in his career. Having spent his working life concentrating solely on technical issues, he now has to supervise two junior staff. “People management is certainly something new to me. A good supervisor should know the strengths and weaknesses of their staff and assign them suitable work. This is something I have to learn on the job,” he says.

After graduating with a higher diploma in computing, Leung joined an internet service provider, where he helped maintain steady connections for clients. “I used to do shift work. One time a technical failure occurred and I had to work 16 hours non-stop to fix the problem. Now, at Udomain, I can work regular hours from nine to six,” he says.

Leung’s current job is to ensure clients’ websites run smoothly and contain no dead links. “Our company helps firms and organisations run their websites. I begin my day by checking for faults in the system. If I receive e-mails from clients about connection problems, I will help them fix them,” he says.

Leung also attends conferences overseas to learn about the latest developments in the IT world. “Technology changes quickly – there are new devices coming out every year and we have to keep to date. The need for continuous learning is a challenge for all IT professionals,” he says.

To move up in the IT industry, Leung says that just having technical knowledge is not enough and that strong communication skills are also essential. One part of his job is to act as a consultant for clients and offer advice on improving their networking systems, so it is very important that he is able to communicate with them effectively. “It is my job to understand clients and give them what they want. Every client has different demands and I need to provide various solutions,” he says.

Leung advises youngsters planning to join the industry to decide on the area in which they are interested and focus on learning its technology. “They must have a focus. If, like me, they are interested in networking technologies, I advise them to obtain CCNP [Cisco Certified Network Professional], a globally recognised qualification. It will definitely help them find a job,” he says.

Leung thinks the networking industry has huge potential as the demand for internet connections continues to rise. “People used to only use their computers to go online. Now, with the abundance of mobile devices, they demand faster and faster internet connections wherever they go. The demand will only grow,” he says.