I’m a Military Spouse: Here’s How I Transitioned to an IT Career

Sponsored by CGI

Photo courtesy of CGI.

Photo courtesy of CGI.

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Fairygodboss
June 22, 2024 at 6:32PM UTC

Jyotshana Sharma is the spouse of an Army veteran, and like many military spouses, she faced interruptions to her career while her husband served. She explains, “Constant moving and relocating make it hard for military spouses to have a job.” However, this experience also gives them unique advantages. As Sharma notes, military spouses get the chance to “learn and grow different soft skills,” as well as meet and learn from a variety of people. But how can military spouses translate these skills into a successful civilian career while accounting for the challenges they’ve faced?

One way is through programs such as the Hiring Our Heroes (HOH) Fellowship: a 12-week program that matches transitioning service members, veterans, and military spouses with participating host companies to receive sought-after Salesforce programming certifications.

Today, Sharma is a Salesforce Admin Consultant at CGI, one of the world’s largest IT and business consulting firms — and a host company for Hiring Our Heroes. 

When Sharma joined the HOH program at CGI, she was a certified Salesforce admin without any real-world working experience. But, thanks to the skill development and training she received in the program, Sharma was able to transition to a full-time position at CGI after completing the fellowship. “Through this fellowship, I gained experience and am now a consultant growing my skills and working on client projects,” says Sharma. 

The Value of a Supportive Work Environment

“CGI is a supportive workplace for employees with diverse backgrounds,” states Sharma. “CGI values and respects the differences among employees and works to create an inclusive environment where everyone feels welcome and supported.”

Sharma knows firsthand how, at CGI, employees of all backgrounds see themselves represented and feel empowered to celebrate all parts of their identity. 

For instance, as a woman, Sharma clearly sees herself represented at all levels within CGI. “We have lots of women working in tech and as leaders at CGI,” she shares. “CGI treats everyone equally and gives equal opportunity for growth.”

This representation is key since, as Sharma herself says, “when people from different backgrounds, cultures, and experiences are represented in the workplace, it can lead to a more dynamic and creative workplace, as people bring different perspectives and ideas to the table.”

Being a woman is just one aspect of Sharma’s identity; she is also proud to be from Nepal. And, at CGI, they work hard to ensure that everyone feels empowered and supported in sharing all aspects of who they are through benefits like member resource groups (including the Asian American Pacific Islander [AAPI] member resource group). These groups help members respectfully share their opinions, insights, and experiences. Through groups like these, Sharma can share important parts of her life such as Dashain — the biggest festival in Nepal. “Celebrating this festival helps me stay connected to my roots, culture, and where I came from,” she says. “This is a tradition and celebration that is important to me, and I like to celebrate it with my family and friends here in the U.S.”

Today, Sharma is advancing toward her goal of becoming a cloud services professional. Looking back, she is glad to be at a company that supports all aspects of a person and their total wellbeing.

“I love CGI’s work environment,” she says. “CGI encourages employees to have a healthy and balanced life. CGI strongly believes that health and wellbeing are important factors to the success of our members and the organization.”



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