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Samantha Rouse

Quantitative Development Manager, G-Research &
Chair of the Women in STEM committee, G-Research

The path to success in your career is not always straightforward, and falling short the first time did not deter this Software Engineer from taking another shot at joining a leading technology company.

Samantha Rouse first applied to join G-Research, Europe’s leading quantitative finance research firm, straight after graduating from university. But it didn’t quite go to plan.

“It was my first-ever job interview and I was wholly unprepared. I unfortunately didn’t get the role I wanted first-time round and ended up spending the first two years of my working life at an investment bank. I learnt a lot in those two years and I was far more prepared next time round, which contributed to my success when I applied again. Since then I haven’t looked back,” says Rouse.

G-Research hires some of the brightest minds in the world and pairs them with advanced technology to try and predict movements in financial markets. It offers a wide range of careers in software and quantitative engineering and development, alongside industrial placements.

“The people here are very smart and respect each other. The company has no politics and unlike other businesses, where there are sometimes lots of hoops to jump through to get up the ladder, here you just have to be good at your job!”

Playing a vital role

Rouse attained a degree in Natural Sciences from the University of Birmingham where her module choices allowed her to focus on computer science and maths.

In her five years with G-Research, she has progressed from Software Developer to become a Software Development Manager, responsible for a team of 17.

Her team plays a vital role within the quantitative finance firm. They are responsible for part of a platform that interacts with stock market data, utilising some of the latest machine learning techniques available to enable Quantitative Researchers to do their job efficiently and effectively.

There’s lots of great aspects of working at G-Research but the thing that struck me was how you really feel like you’re part of the team straightaway- and it’s a team you really want to be a part of.

Empowering people to work better

On a typical working day, Rouse checks in with her team to ensure they are happy and feel empowered to do what they need to do their jobs as best they can.

“I do manage a larger team of people, but we have a very flat structure here that isn’t wrapped up in titles,” she says.

“People management is one of my big responsibilities and I look to help make their work easier and remove any roadblocks that might be slowing them down.”

Other aspects of her job include managing stakeholders, setting the technical direction of the team, and ensuring client needs are constantly being reviewed and met. But there’s scope to go beyond the day-to-day, too.

“I like to have a pet project. This year that project is communication between developers, which means I need to talk to other teams that will provide us with technical solutions, in an attempt to improve the ways we work together.”

Embracing STEM opportunities

Until very recently, Rouse was the inaugural chair of G-Research’s Women in STEM Committee, which works on initiatives to hire and retain more women, as well as provide networking and mentoring opportunities.

Beyond that, G-Research also has partnerships with other organisations  and charities to encourage more young girls into STEM careers, like software engineering.

“In my previous job they kept calling me the grad even though I was no longer the grad. When I look back, I think some of it was very gender related,” she says.

“But I haven’t had any career blockers here and I have always had a super encouraging manager whom I have felt is very invested in me.”

It’s clear that Rouse loves her job and is highly motivated, which is unsurprising when you discover that G-Research is a company whose employees are placed very much at the heart of its operations. Perks include an annual getaway weekend abroad for team building activities.

“There’s lots of great aspects of working at G-Research but the thing that struck me was how you really feel like you’re part of the team straightaway- and it’s a team you really want to be a part of,” she says.

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