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Phyllis

Principal Firmware Engineer

Solid State Logic

Location

Oxford

What qualifications do you have?

BEng. Electrical and Electronics Engineering

Tell us about your job

How would you describe your current role?

I work as a Principal Firmware Engineer. Firmware engineers use hardware description languages to describe digital systems. The language determines the logic components and wiring like what would be found on a very complex prototype breadboard. Automation software convert this code into an output that is programmed into programmable logic e.g. a field-programmable gate arrays. Apart from designing firmware, I am also involved in overseeing code that’s generated within the team and ensure that it meets company guidelines. I also look out for the latest technology in the area of firmware development.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

I enjoy the challenges that are brought on by logic design. I marvel at the number of skills that are required to get an audio product out of the door; input from the product and sales teams, hardware engineers, layout engineers, mechanical engineers, software engineers, test engineers, purchasing and once the product is out, the support team play their part. It's a privilege being part of such a team.

What do you enjoy least about your job?

Supporting a product that was designed ages ago can be a bit of a drag as mostly, one has moved on to other recent projects and it takes effort to put yourself back mentally.

Who or what inspired you to follow your particular career path?

I didn’t set out to be an electronics engineer in an audio company. I wouldn’t describe myself as an audiophile. I enjoyed learning but would say that my mother was an inspiration to me as she instilled in me the value of hard work. I enjoyed Physics and Maths at school and got excited about an electronics engineering prospectus at university where I had enrolled to do Pharmacy! Thankfully I had the grades to switch and the rest is history.

What advice would you give to any young person considering a STEM career?

Don’t get bogged down with getting the correct career identified from the beginning. Take up the STEM subjects that you love and see where they will take you. Focus on enjoying learning. There are so many careers out that that one might not know of at the beginning.

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