During the last three years, I have been working in applied research laboratories in GIS, Remote Sensing and Epidemiology. I was acting as informal consultant fulfilling roles of research software engineer and data analyst with a focus on geospatial data. Currently, I am looking to move to the private sector because of covid this type of positions are scarce in the academia circles I know. I feel that it is hard to make companies value your experience when it do not come with this kind of position.
Does anyone have experience of moving from academia to private from this kind of position? How to value this experience in the private sector?
I made this shift 6 years ago now. It has been good. I was a neurophysiologist/electrical engineer in my past life.
Much of the qualities that make for success in academia also apply to industry. One thing that is important to emphasize in interviews and CVs is your familiarity and adherence to good software engineering practices such as versioning, CI, testing.
Thanks for the advice, it seemed implied to me. I will put this aspect explicitly in my CV.
If I may, how was the shift in terms of work environment for you? What to expect to be really different from academia?
I only have experience with one organization. I was in basic research, and I moved into software development. I used to write software to solve analysis problems. Then I wrote software to help other people solve analysis problems.
The key difference I think is that you make a tangible product that other people use in their daily lives. You get quick feedback about what doesn’t work. You have a finite time line and you have to throw things out to make things work in the time allotted.
Depending on the labs you worked in this may or may not be a big change for you.
Thank you for the feedback. It is similar of one lab where I worked with a lot of projects going on for various entities with feedbacks and deadlines on the products we were delivering.
Just have to find a job now. Thanks again!