Meet the Team – Vanitha Mani Selvakumar

Vanitha is a Master’s student who is about to start her PhD in Planning at Birmingham City University. She is also a project manager at Curzon Software House.

She sat down with us to tell us what she’s learnt about project management, implementing systems and processes and her favourite place to go in Birmingham.  

Can you tell us about your role at Curzon Software House?

My role at Curzon Software House is Project Manager. I currently have around 10 projects in my control. I do everything from project kick-off, all the way to resource allocation, design and final delivery. 

I’m also responsible for keeping communication with our stakeholders, ensuring we are meeting  their requirements and making sure there are no hickups or road blocks in the projects. One of the ways I do this is collecting an everyday status of the groups to ensure a weekly delivery for our stakeholders. 

What course are you doing?

I have just finished my Master’s in Project Management.

What have you taken from your studies and put into this project?

We learn a lot of theory like project management and process control. Before coming to Birmingham City University I worked in organisations where all the systems and processes are already in place, so you just improve it or keep up with the thread. 

At Curzon Software House, we are trying to establish a process, and when you are trying to establish a new process it’s always completely different. We are coming up with new ideas, which we use to manage the project, such as scheduled stakeholder meetings and scrum meetings. 

During my studies we learned about the theory of project management, but when we implement it we always have difficulties. Our resources are our staff and it’s not always perfect – but striving towards it is what the process arrangement is all about.

What is your background like in the software industry?

I previously did a Masters in Software Engineering and then I worked for three years as an associate project manager before I did my Master’s degree in Project Management.

How did you get involved in this industry?

After doing my Masters in Software Engineering I worked for a year as an intern and I was doing every task. When you’re an intern there’s no limit to what was expected of me. I was testing products and working in quality assurance for a few months before I was moved onto project management.

I am quite a pessimistic person, but that actually helped me solve and predict problems. Being a pessimist helps when you are a project manager as you always know what is going to go wrong. Once I delivered my first project, I was so proud of myself. I realised this is where I should stay.

What’s your favourite city? (Besides Birmingham!)

Goa, India.

Tea or coffee? And how do you like it?

Tea. But Indian Chai.

Favourite place to go in Birmingham?

SeaLife Centre at Brindleyplace. 

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