Experience

Here is a brief overview of my employment history – for further details please contact me for my CV or visit me on LinkedIn.

AB Brand and Marketing Agency

Senior Developer

Feb 2019 – May 2021

Full stack web development and systems manager within an agile creative agency. My dual role saw me build and maintain several WordPress-based websites with multiple bespoke features such as optimising for heavy traffic, SEO (especially Google Web Vitals), digital trafficking and synchronising with external systems.

Clients included ATOL, Exeter Cathedral, Sparx, Sabio Group, CUBE Content Management, Harrisons Of Edinburgh, Consillient Health, Dart Harbour and the Guild Of Fine Food.

I was also responsible for attaining and retaining the company’s Cyber Essentials certification, managed a migration from office-based to remote operation with Office 365 during the pandemic and completed a large scale migration of the entire web estate from Rackspace to Digital Ocean.

Funeral Guide

Software Developer

Jul 2017 – Jan 2019

Fast-growing startup in the funeral sector. I was responsible for for the architecture, design and build of a market-changing CRM/ERP system, to allow funeral directors to manage every aspect of their business; funeral arrangement, staff / resource management, business / contact management, product & service inventory and customer services.

The system is built with a microservices architecture utilising AWS Lambda functions to connect to an RDS persistence layer (this previously used Docker containers hosted on EC2 instances).

Multiple bespoke Event Sourced backend services (written in PHP7) communicate with each other using GraphQL APIs, and are orchestrated by a NodeJS gateway, which is in turn queried by a React web frontend. I was jointly responsible for building the backend and almost 100% responsible for building the gateway and frontend.

Web Engineer

Senior Developer

Jul 2016 – May 2017

Small web development agency, where I, along with the director, one other senior developer and two apprentices (whom I mentored), developed and maintained several business websites.

These included a cloud-based CCTV storage system built in Laravel 4.2, a commerce site for a B2B clothing wholesaler written in Laravel 5.3, a charity greeting cards site built using Propel ORM and a custom PHP controller, an edible flowers retailer based on OpenCart and several boutique sites built on customized WordPress installations.

Our development stack made use of CentOS 6, Vagrant, Composer, Apache Ant and Plesk.

Boston Ivy (part of IG Group)

Contract Developer

Jun 2015 – May 2016

Design and build of small, agile websites as part of IG’s marketing drive, following their successful bid to become the registrar of six gTLDs. Sites included brochure-ware for the registries (get.forex, for example), a platform review site (reviews.spreadbetting), an up-to-the-minute news site (news.market), a specialised news site (trade.forex, which uses a Laravel middleware layer, pulling data from multiple APIs, including WordPress), and a broker comparison site, which incorporates affiliate trafficking (brokercomparison.spreadbetting).

In addition to helping build the sites, as part of the optimisation and trafficking drive, I built several WordPress plugins from scratch, including one that displays modal pop-ups with signup forms, allowing for A/B testing, one that includes a suite of tracking tools such as Site Catalyst, Idio, and an in-house system, one that manages Google Adsense and incorporates several tricks for circumventing ad-blockers, and one that pulls real-time share price and forex data from an IG API.

We worked using a tight agile system, and utilised heavily automated dev ops, based around Atlassian’s JIRA, Bitbucket, Bamboo and Confluence ecosystem, and I have considerable knowledge in setting up and using Git-based build-and-test and deployment tools.

Havas Media UK

Senior Developer

Nov 2011 – May 2015

Design and build of websites, primarily using WordPress. I built WP themes and plugins from scratch, making heavy use of HTML, CSS and JavaScript, based on prototypes or creative mock-ups. I produced highly-customised brochure-ware sites, web apps, admin systems, intranets, extranets and knowledge bases, pushing WordPress to its operational limits on multiple occasions. Our clients were internal to the group, add-ons for media clients or direct. In addition to building the websites, I was also responsible for their deployment, and subsequent support and training of users.

I was also responsible for the virtualisation of legacy servers; migrating websites and services between environments, and converting a number of servers to virtual machines (using VMWare ESXi) and repurposing the hardware as VM hosts or wiping and disposing of as appropriate. I have recently sanitised the environment and introduced conventions for smoother maintenance and created a knowledge base, tracking all hardware, servers (real and virtual), websites, services, IP addresses, customers and SLAs.

A secondary role was providing technical support for ad trafficking, using Google’s suite of services; Doubleclick for Advertisers, Tag Manager, Analytics and Campaign Manager. I also used a number of other tag management systems.

tmg

Support Engineer

Feb 2009 – Feb 2011

Internal IT support and external customer support. With a colleague, we oversaw all the IT infrastructure within a small business, a mix of Windows 2000 / 2003 / 2008 and Ubuntu Linux machines, acting as file servers, Exchange mail servers, web and SQL hosting and monitoring. Our main live environment was at the EasyNet data centre in Brick Lane, London and thus much of my work involved remote support.

I also provided first- and second-line support to our clients, most of whom had websites built on our own CMS. As necessary, I also visited customer sites to provide training. Our public sector clients included the Care Quality Commission, Human Tissue Authority, Medical Research Council, London Councils, Central Office of Information, National Occupational Standards and Lambeth College, whilst some of our private sector ones included Reed Smith LLP, Healthcare Connections, Harvey’s Furniture and Bordeaux Wine Investments.

The company was put into liquidation in early 2011 and the assets bought by MPG Media Contacts (now Havas Media UK), with whom I regained employment in November 2011.

McNeill Associates

Business Manager

Jun 2007 – Dec 2008

All sales and marketing functions – cold calling, meeting with prospects, providing quotes and sales proposals, updating website and composing and sending email shots. All accounts functions – issuing of customer invoices, processing of customer payments, processing and paying supplier invoices and extensive use of Sage Line 50. All purchasing functions for engineering staff and support thereof.

Quantum Enterprise Developments Ltd.

Programmer

Jun 2006 – Jun 2007

Designing and programming bespoke software solutions for business customers, and providing support thereon. Supporting legacy solutions provided by other software vendors. All new applications were written in Microsoft .NET Frameworks 1.1 and 2.0. Languages used include C#, SQL, VB and Access. Extensive use of Windows Server 2000 / 2003, SQL Server 2000 / 2005, Solaris and VMWare.

Mitech

Support Engineer

Jan 2004 – Oct 2005

Providing internal data and communications infrastructure maintenance, first-line desk-side support to colleagues and all IT related administration and maintenance within the business. All structured cabling and wireless maintenance, including the installation of network attached devices, phone sets and PCs.

Systems used include Windows 2000 Pro and XP, Server 2000 / 2003, Exchange 2000 / 2005, Systems Management Server (SMS), Office XP / 2003, INDeX phone system, Mitel 3300 phone system and Citrix remote desktop / server. I also have experience in installing and maintaining BlackBerry Enterprise and Captaris RightFax servers and carried out business-wide upgrade of Office (from 2000 to 2003) and the notorious deployment of Windows XP Service Pack 2.

Friends Provident

Account Executive

Sep 2001 – Dec 2003

Maintaining New Generation Pension (Stakeholder and Stakeholder-style) schemes, inputting new business, providing information to clients and liaising with sales offices, IFAs, employers and individual members.