Tell us a bit about yourself and your role at Immense?
I grew up in and around London, and eventually went to university in Bristol and had some fun student jobs like working at the Olympics.
After university I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do and ended up stumbling upon a technology graduate scheme at Travis Perkins. They were happy to take me on as an engineer despite never coding in my life! I distinctly remember my first two weeks on the scheme being me googling how to code in Java.
Eventually, I moved onto Barclays to get some experience working in the financial industry and then, Immense.
I’d describe myself as a techy and bit of a nerd who likes football.
My role at Immense is to focus on the Technology Infrastructure. In simple terms: things in tech break all the time. My job is to make sure that our service is always-on, available and secure.
What is a typical day like for you at Immense?
My role is quite mixed.
We have tasks that are to support upcoming features that the engineers are looking to deliver for our clients, and they need infrastructure changes to happen for those to work.
We have our own features that we would like to do from a technical perspective. For example, it might be something that allows us to run more simulations in parallel or enable our engineers to develop features quicker.
We have tasks that require us to debug and bugfix. Ideally all of our processes would be automated so it can recover itself, but as is the world of start-ups, you can’t tackle everything at once.
Additionally we are usually there to help with design decisions. Mostly trying to give an infrastructure perspective to balance out the simulation engineer’s opinions.
How did you find out about Immense and become involved in the company?
I can’t remember and it’s only 6 months in the past!
I was just looking for a new challenge after moving away from the financial industry. I knew I wanted some more freedom back into my work, and someone contacted me about a start-up called Immense and it sounded interesting.
After some small discussions with other companies, I ended up at Immense and it was a good choice. I’m in a team of two so my voice is heard and have a lot of control about what we do, and I feel like I can help the company learn more about the Infrastructure space.
What’s the best part about working at Immense?
I think people at Immense are really trusting. They see that I have experience in my area and therefore trust that I will make good decisions and design choices.
That doesn’t mean they don’t question me or ask for clarity, but I feel respected here and listened to.
What would you say is the most challenging part of the job?
There is always lots to do, it’s a challenge but we stay focused and we communicate well as a team and that helps to make us efficient!
It is the nature of start-ups; Big vision, limited resource but that’s part of the fun!
What has been your biggest career achievement?
I can’t think of any single achievement. But I think I’ve done well for someone from a non-tech background.
Going from that to being one of the people in the room with the most experience in the area can be quite a nice feeling.
What did you want to be when you were younger?
I would say a Footballer, like most young guys. Ryan Giggs was my absolute hero!
I wasn’t too bad a player in fairness. Had a number of trials. But those days are long gone!
What do you think the future of mobility looks like?
As with most things, I think the industry will be pushed towards whichever solution is easiest or cheapest for the user.
The two things people hate most about travel is the expense or the hassle of it all.
I think that is one reason that the Eurostar became popular. It allows you to travel from city-centre to city-centre of another country, relatively low-security check-in time and relatively-cheaply. It isn’t necessarily ground-breaking (excepting the long underwater tunnel between two nation states 😊), but it ticks a lot of the right boxes for most people.
What do you think are the biggest challenges facing the industry?
I think a lot of issues result in our towns and cities being very old. They were built years ago and how we move now is completely different to how we did previously – not to mention their huge populations now!
So, we have people creating solutions and innovative ways to move around and solve issues, but it is being built on top of foundations that are extremely old, and therefore can hinder designs and decision-making effectiveness.
When you’re not working, what are your hobbies and interests?
I’m a mix between an introvert and extrovert so some days I’ll want to be locked away and other days, a social butterfly.
I pretty much love food, video games, movies and football. Any of those things with or without some company is usually good with me.
When I come across things I haven’t done before, I try to do those too. Most recently: air rifle shooting!
If you were stuck on a desert island and could take three things with you what would they be?
Well when I think of a desert island, I think of sun -so an unlimited supply of sunscreen. I’m ginger so… it needs to be done.
Other than that, maybe some food and a runway so my family and friends could visit.