Women Leading the Charge in Tech Spotlight Series: Highlighting Kate Vnuk, QA Lead at Verikai
In this Women in Tech Spotlight, we have the pleasure of introducing Kate Vnuk, one of our brilliant QA Analysts at Verikai. She shares her inspiring journey into tech and offers valuable advice for women looking to pursue a career in this exciting field.
Tell us a little bit about yourself!
I am from Belarus, a country in Eastern Europe. In 2009, I moved to the United States, and since then, I have had the pleasure of living in various states such as California, New York, and finally, settling in Florida. When I’m not working, I love to spend quality time with my family, especially activities with my daughter. Living in Florida, swimming all year round has become one of our favorite things to do, and we also love playing tennis together.
What inspired you to pursue a career in being a QA Analyst?
My journey in the United States began in San Francisco, California, where I had a few friends working in Silicon Valley. Despite having a bachelor’s degree in marketing, their experiences in the IT industry influenced me to explore a career in tech. I decided to start as a QA Analyst to gain insight into the field and to see if I wanted to pursue a career as a developer or data scientist.
After obtaining a degree in Analytics, I landed my first job at a digital agency in New York City. It didn’t take long for me to realize that being a QA Analyst allows me to touch on multiple aspects of tech. Not only did I get to work with development and design, but I also had the opportunity to work with data science and product management. This combination of skills was perfect for me, as it aligned with my career goals and interests.
How did you find Verikai? What made you want to be a QA analyst at Verikai?
Throughout my career in the tech industry, I primarily worked for digital agencies, which acted as intermediaries for product companies. While this provided valuable experience and exposure to a variety of clients and projects, I began to feel a sense of frustration as I advanced into leadership roles within QA. As the middleman, our agency often had to adhere to strict client guidelines and limitations, which hindered my ability to make strategic decisions and fully utilize my expertise. I realized that if I wanted to take my career to the next level and make a greater impact in the industry, I needed to consider working for a product company.
Verikai stood out to me as a unique opportunity to challenge myself and expand my skillset in the insurance industry. Their commitment to innovation and fast-paced, forward-thinking culture drew me in. Joining the company has allowed me to fully immerse myself in a product-driven environment and contribute to a dynamic, cutting-edge organization. But what truly made me choose Verikai were the people I met during the interview process. Their vision for the company, outgoing personalities, and honesty were truly inspiring and made me excited to be a part of the team.
What do you find most rewarding about your work in insurtech and how does it compare to your previous experiences in other industries?
When I joined Verikai, I was thrilled to be stepping into a completely new industry that was vastly different from my previous experiences. It felt like a breath of fresh air, a space where I could tap into my creativity and feel passionate and motivated to make a real contribution to the tech industry as a QA Analyst. Verikai has provided me with the perfect opportunity to do just that. I am grateful for the chance to bring my unique perspective and skills to the team and be a part of a forward-thinking, dynamic company that values innovation and collaboration.
What advice would you give to other women who are interested in pursuing a career in tech, but may feel intimidated by the male-dominated culture in the industry?
If you’re considering pursuing a career in tech, it’s important to never let anyone dissuade you or make you feel like you can’t succeed. The first step may be difficult, but it has the potential to lead to a fulfilling career and contribute to the growth of the women in tech community. It’s important to not let self-doubt get in your way, especially because the general perception that women are not suited for engineering roles is changing. As role models, women have a responsibility to not only meet their work commitments but also to inspire and support others in the industry. Remember, your competition isn’t other people – it’s the limitations you set for yourself.
What do you hope to achieve in your career as a QA analyst in the tech industry, and how do you see yourself contributing to the industry as a woman?
I aspire to serve as a role model for women looking to build their careers in the tech industry. My goal is to reach a top leadership position and inspire others through public speaking engagements, where I can share my journey and insights. In the long term, I hope to establish my own course or school focused on QA, where I can help to develop and mentor the next generation of tech professionals. I believe that by empowering and supporting each other, we can create a more inclusive and diverse industry that benefits everyone.
[A fun one] If you were stranded on a deserted island and could only bring three things with you, what would they be?
- A boat, of course! 🙂
To learn more about Kate, connect with her on LinkedIn!