TheFace: Sarah Al-Jindan, Saudi software engineer

Sarah Al-Jindan. (AN photo by Ziyad Alarfaj)
Updated 04 October 2019

TheFace: Sarah Al-Jindan, Saudi software engineer

  • Sarah Al-Jindan is a senior front-end engineer at Seera Group, a leading Saudi travel, and tourism company

Empathy is much stronger than sympathy — it leads towards compassion. Where you do more than a donation, you give up your time to help others who need you. 

This is something I learned from joining the volunteering world at a young age. My sisters and I were part of a big community in the city of Alkhobar because of my mother’s charitable and philanthropic work. She is the director of the Orphans Sponsorship Department at Fatat Alkhaleej Society. This experience not only gave me a strong work ethic but also made me more understanding of others.

My father is a retired doctor and university director. Both of my parents are role models, and they planted robust ethics in our minds as we were growing up.

Most of my family members work in the health sector, and that set the bar high. Everyone assumed I’d follow in the footsteps of my family but I chose a different path for myself, finding a passion for computers.

Thankfully, I have been blessed with the best support system anyone could ask for, my parents and siblings. I am the youngest in the family, and I would not be where I am right now without them, they are my backbone. I consider myself very lucky and aim to always make them proud of what I do.

I would love to start a software solution business back in Saudi Arabia, because I know that there is definitely a market for it while there is a lack of providers.

Sarah Al-Jindan, software engineer

Driven by my passion for technology, computers, and design, I did my bachelor’s degree in digital media at the University of the West of England, in Bristol, UK. My field of study included creative technologies, I was involved in game development, software engineering, web design, and animation. After that, my interest became more multidisciplinary, and I did my master’s in human-computer interaction (HCI) at the University of Bath.

It is an exciting new field of study where psychology and other social and behavioral sciences unite with computer science and related technical fields; it attempts to understand the human experience of using technology.

Being exposed to so many different disciplines in computer science, and doing several internships and placements focused on software engineering, I totally fell in love with programming.

Currently, I am living in Dubai working as a senior front-end engineer at Seera Group, a leading Saudi travel, and tourism company. My position is connected with my field of specialization in HCI, but more focused on programming.

Working at the online unit for the travel agency, I am the middle person between the back end and the user. I’m learning a lot working alongside very supportive colleagues and mentors, definitely a fun environment to work in. 

As digital infrastructure grows in the Kingdom, people are becoming more creative, coming up with many creative ideas for businesses, websites, apps, which will need trusted software solution providers to bring them to life.

I would love to start a software solution business back in Saudi Arabia because I know that there is a market for it while there is a lack of honest providers.

Also, I feel this problem allows many people in the market to take advantage of clients, which slows down the whole market and ideas get lost. I want to establish a place to help people to bring their ideas to life, which will benefit all.

I am currently building my portfolio to begin my startup. I want to have a strong start and not enter the market prematurely. I want to take my time, preparing myself, searching and discovering local talents and building my team.

Working with startups has always been a fun, enriching experience for me. I worked in a lot of startups, and I know how much dedication someone needs to give.

The reward is a more intense and extensive experience because there is a lot of pressure on each individual to deliver. Having fewer people on the team means more responsibility on each person, which ultimately gives you a lot of insight.

I abide by the user experience guru Steve Krug’s motto “Don’t make me think.” It means that the most critical characteristic of any technical product is to make it self-evident, that users do not think about what they are doing while using it, everything has to be self-explanatory.

Oman, UAE praise Saudi Arabia for reaching a deal between Yemeni parties

Updated 23 min 7 sec ago

Oman, UAE praise Saudi Arabia for reaching a deal between Yemeni parties

  • Gulf countries praise Saudi Arabia’s role in brokering the Riyadh Agreement.
  • The deal ends a feud between the government and the STC and refocuses efforts on fighting the Houthi militia

RIYADH: Oman welcomed on Tuesday Saudi Arabia’s efforts in bringing together the Yemeni government and southern separatists to sign a power sharing agreement. 
The two parties signed the Saudi-brokered deal in Riyadh last week to end a power struggle in the country’s south. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman hailed the agreement as a step toward a wider political solution to the Yemen conflict.
Oman’s foreign ministry said it “hopes the agreement will pave the way for a comprehensive settlement in Yemen.”
Saudi Arabia’s Deputy Defense Minister, Prince Khalid bin Salman, visited Oman on Monday and met Sultan Qaboos bin Said.
The UAE Cabinet also welcomed on Tuesday the signing of the agreement and expressed confidence that it will establish a “new era of unified and effective work to meet the aspirations of the Yemeni people.”
“The Cabinet affirmed the UAE’s support for all efforts exerted by Saudi Arabia, through its leadership of the Arab Coalition, in order to stabilize Yemen and allow it to regain it role in the region,” the state WAM news agency reported.
The new arrangement calls for an equal number of ministries between the Southern Transitional Council (STC) and the government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi.
The Kuwaiti Cabinet also welcomed the Riyadh Agreement on Monday and thanked Saudi Arabia for its efforts.
Yemen’s government was forced to flee the capital Sanaa when Houthi militants and their allies seized the city in 2014. 
The government and the STC are part of a military coalition against the Iran-backed Houthis, which also includes Saudi Arabia and the UAE.