Professional Work, what is it

Within the context of your degree, Professional Work is work in an environment where you can experience of the professional practices and norms used in the IT workplace.

The Definition

To count as professional hours the work needs to be paid and under an employment contract, plus; be working within an IT Engineering team, exposed to team practices, applying your degree, solving engineering problems, under the hands on guidance and mentoring of experienced industry professionals.

This means that working from home, working largely alone (for example summer research work), remote working, working on trivial problems and working in teams that don’t include IT professionals will not count as professional work (this list is not intended to be comprehensive).

Working for IT companies will typically be fine, as will IT consulting and IT security. Many non-IT companies have substantial IT teams, working within one of these teams will also typically be fine. Companies that design, manufacture and repair electronics will typically be fine for ECEN majors.

Trivial work is work that can be satisfactorily achieved without the expense and trouble of undertaking a four year Engineering degree in advance. For example, ECEN students doing factory assembly work, SWEN students doing data entry work.

The following are examples of work that will typically not suit the work experience program. Feel free discuss with your WE coordinator if you feel you have a good case.

  • Contracting
  • Start-ups as unpaid labour
  • Data entry
  • Electronic assembly work – no if on a factory production line, but ok if you are designing, improving, maintaining or otherwise using your degree to add value
  • Parent or guardian's company or a parent/guardian is your manager
  • Remote working

We recognize that working remotely may be where the IT workplace of the future is going, however it does not fulfill educational needs around learning professional practice. Slack (instant messaging) is useful but is not a replacement for face-to-face engagement and learning from experienced peers. The experience and feedback from students and graduates that have tried both, highlights poor engagement with work-mates, poor support and difficulties with separating work and home life.

[Covid-19] Remote working with NZ based companies as a consequence of Covid-19 and lockdowns, will be accepted.