Senior IT Developer, Andrew Sutherland, has spent the past 12 years dedicated to making work easier, more efficient, and more profitable for colleagues and customers alike. Learn more about how Andy combines his passion for helping others with his knack for problem solving to make CQ Partners the best it can be in our latest employee spotlight.
Q&A with Andy Sutherland, Senior IT Developer:
What is your role at CQ Partners?
I am a software developer and business analyst in the sense that I must understand the business process that I am developing an application for. In the beginning of my role, I was being told what to develop. Now, I’m more involved in analysis and development. I write applications internally and externally for users to make their experience at work better, more efficient, and to save money.
Tell us a little about your background!
I have a degree in biology from the University of Delaware and some of my past jobs before becoming a developer include car sales, mortgage origination, credit analyst, customer service, and I was Cutco knife salesperson. I’ve always been into computers, and I was always playing around with mainframes and things like that since high school. I just had a knack for programming logic.
When I got into the mortgage industry, they were doing everything by hand. I found mortgage software for them to install, set up a network, and ended up writing software to assist the software they were using. Then I began selling that. I had my own company doing that for a while.
I also went to Goldey-Beacom College to get some formal education about the career that I was veering into. I learned accounting there and from there I got a contact to develop an accounting system for a CPA to manage accounting for different businesses. He was able to do things like payroll, cost of goods and more for different restaurants that he managed.
Prior to CQ Partners, I worked at Wilmington Trust, which eventually became M&T Bank. After the transition, I was eager to get out. I applied to CQ Partners (previously AHAA) in early 2011. At that time, the IT director wasn’t a perfect fit for me, so I continued my job search. Bob Lind became IT director about 6 months after my first interview and the department still needed a second developer. He must have looked through old notes from the previous director, and he called me up. After my interview with Bob, I now felt like CQ Partners would be the right fit for me.
What is your favorite part of your job?
There’s nothing boring about it, and there’s always new stuff to do. The best part of my job is that I get to do what I like to do, which is develop and figure things out. I get a lot of satisfaction from helping my coworkers and lessening their work.
What are some of the values that drive your work?
The values that drive me are accountability for the work you do, and honesty. If you make a mistake, let everyone know, and it gets resolved much faster.
Tell us about a memorable experience or opportunity you’ve had while working for CQ Partners.
One notable part of working at CQ Partners is the office weather. On my first day at with the company, the office temperature never got over 50 degrees. Meanwhile, almost every summer we would endure days pushing 85 to 90 degrees in the office.
Another interesting memory is that I started on Halloween. There has been a running joke for a few years where I have come in and been our Vice President of IT, Bob Lind, for Halloween.
How do you stay motivated in and out of work?
At work, I’m motivated by the team around me and the desire to improve aspects of a co-worker’s or customer’s work experience. I’m also driven by my curiosity. At home, it is my family that keeps me motivated.
If I can develop something that makes their life easier at work, whether it’s for a customer or it makes us more profitable, that’s exciting. It gets me energized. The latest project I had the opportunity to work on was right up my alley. I was given full range to make something, and I got to be really creative. I wasn’t held down and got to do a lot of investigation into how things were working and what I could do with it.
What’s something you love to do outside of work?
In the summer, I always have a garden and frequently bring some of what I grow into the office. Bicycling is what I do to stay in shape. If the weather is above 50 degrees and it’s sunny, I am getting out for at least an hour ride. I also have a family and grandchildren that I spend a lot of my time with.