José Eduardo Narros
MSc ITMOC, 2011
Country of origin: Spain
Employer: Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market, EU agency
After working for software development vendors for a few years, I decided to go back to university to complement my engineering background with postgraduate management studies in order to widen my career options. At the same time I was also looking for the opportunity to study in a good English university with an excellent reputation.
I chose to study at Lancaster because I found the MSc ITMOC programme structure very interesting and innovative, mixing social and technical areas, something which not many programmes do. In addition the University was very well ranked and it was offering some courses in collaboration with top industry players such as SAP and Accenture.
As soon as the course started, I realised that it was going to be a very challenging and intense year of study. I was glad to have chosen on-campus accommodation because living on campus gave me the opportunity to stay close to colleagues, enabling me to combine study with social activities and be part of a very friendly and international community. The different backgrounds of the programme's students as well as sharing modules with students from other programmes definitely added value to my learning experience in both personal and professional facets of my life.
For my dissertation, I chose one of the available organisational projects at a company in Lancaster which allowed me to combine both practitioners’ and academics’ viewpoints as well as their practices and insights. I worked closely with the company's web development team; firstly observing and listening to their practices and main challenges and secondly, based on a combination of related academic literature studied through the programme and my previous experience, advising them on possible improvements. The dissertation was very fruitful in helping me to understand some of the challenges that affect many technological organisations as well as the role of consultants who work with those organisations.
Currently, I am working as an IT consultant at the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market, which is the European Union agency in charge of registering trademarks and designs, based in Alicante, Spain. I am part of a large IT department of over 200 professionals involved in the development of the agency's vast Information System.
The ITMOC programme has really transformed the way I look at the role of IT in organisations and helped me to understand the importance of looking at the relationships between social and technological aspects of organisations. I notice the impact that the ITMOC programme has had on my skills, particularly in my abilities to understand the situation of projects, teams and departments. Hopefully this will lead me to a better understanding of which management options are applicable to them.