Nihan Tuncay Interview: Manages 220 Engineers


Didem Eryar Ünlü who is Technology Editor at Dünya Newspaper, has interviewed with Nihan Tuncay, Etiya Solution Development Director;

Etiya, founded in 2004, is the Turkey's largest corporate software company today. According to the Gartner Report, it is one of the world's first eight sector players in its field. Etiya, which will celebrate its 25th anniversary in 2029, aims to be one of the world's top three software companies.

The company also makes a difference in terms of female employment and managers in the sector. Women constitute 35 percent of Etiya employees. This ratio reaches 40-45 percent in software development teams. 50 percent of senior executives are women.

A while ago, the CEO of Etiya, Aslan Dogan, told me that 36 percent of the 600 engineers of Etiya were women. Dogan indicated that they just do not apply positive discrimination to achieve this ratio; he further stated that diversity and balance is naturally occur when the equal opportunity is offered to the skilled employee. One of Etiya's engineers is Nihan Tuncay, the Solution Development Director of the company.

Born in 1984, Nihan Tuncay became a senior analyst after a few years of work in Etiya, where she started working as an analyst in 2009. After the promotion, she started to manage a team of 40 people in the first year and 70 people in the second year. Today, she runs a team of 220 people. This team constitute most of the software developers, analysts and engineers of the company. As well as being the first woman director of the company, Tuncay is the first person who was promoted after having worked as an analyst in the company. Outstanding three male candidates, Tuncay has become a role model for other women in the company.

Although Tuncay manages an engineering team of 220 people, she is not an engineer. She decided to focus on management and organization rather than marketing or sales. "It is my personality, to see the big picture, manage and organize. When I was a child, I was in control, even though I was the middle sibling." Tuncay decided to do her internship in the technology sector in the second year of university and later founded a technology company with her two friends.

"Within a year I learned to write a software and make analysis. When I obtained all the required certifications from Microsoft within a year, the company sent me a thank-you letter," Tuncay said. She worked for 4 years without any vacation. Her adventure in Etiya I started in 2009. Let's listen to this story from her:

My goal is to become a CEO'

* "I think society, people need to constantly progress and develop. My goal in business is to manage much wider organizations. Of course, one day I want to become a CEO and I share this desire with my managers. I do not necessarily say that I will be the CEO of Etiya, it could be another company or institution. "

"Recently, the number of female executives has been increasing. The important point is changing the corporate culture and give women the opportunity to get promoted. We have improved ourselves in providing employment for women in the information sector. But this is not enough, only 17 percent of working women can found themselves a place at the management level.

In business life, women generally work in functional jobs rather than 'strategic' jobs. A fair approach is important when selecting a manager. Women should not be afraid of taking responsibility, to stand out. "

* "If you are good at your job as a woman, you should not stay on the backstage, you should express your thoughts without fear, it is very important to set goals and to constantly improve yourself. It is also very important to set goals and to constantly improve yourself, as a result gender become irrelevant as your goals are fulfilled.”

* "Only 15 percent of computer engineering graduates are female. I think this is entirely related to the lack of clear understanding of the professional contents before the university selection. As Etiya, we go to the universities and try to direct the students correctly. As we are very close to technology in the 21st century, it is difficult for women to stay away from these professions, and I believe that their numbers in the sector will increase. I think that as people have more ideas about the technology sector and related business areas, the number of women, who have taken training outside the engineering faculty like myself and who are working and developing themselves in this field, will increase. "