New horizons

I’m starting on the road to some new adventures this year. 2012 was very much about servicing clients and making great individual projects. 2013 is more about finding projects which give me more of a challenge, and more importantly, give me more ownership of the work I’m doing.

2012 was a really busy year, and I embarked on some fantastic projects. I was really pleased with the work I was able to produce with two of our biggest clients of the year — Whitewood & Fleming and Shannon Trust — both invested a lot of trust in allowing us to do some really innovative work, which helped to drive their organisations forward. There was a lot of hard work involved, but it was worth it.

I also got the chance to work with the very talented people at Pearson’s Future Technology team. Their focus is on working with emerging technologies, and looking at what’s going to be big in the twelve months ahead. I got the chance to really flex my coding muscles and to research and experiment with some pretty cool technology and techniques. I was really pleased when the code for that project was open-sourced, which was a first for the team at Pearson.

In 2013 I knew there was going to be a change to the focus of my work. Although I thoroughly enjoy the diversity of the work we do at We Make Media, there was just no way I could embark on another year at the same intensive pace. Instead, I’ve been focused on finding projects which allow me to invest more of my time and for which I can take more ownership. 2012 was very much about servicing clients and making great individual projects for them. 2013 is more about finding projects which allow me to develop as a person, which give me more of a challenge, and most importantly of all: give me more ownership of the work I’m doing.

At the start of the year, Jo and I set about developing a new e-commerce idea which she’d started to develop. Over the past few months we’ve been carefully planning and developing, and in the coming weeks we’ll be getting ready to launch the first phase. It’s been exciting to work on because it’s allowed me to invest everything I’ve learned about online commerce and audience engagement, and create a design and build which looks stunning, and  works beautifully.

It’s going to be a long haul to get it to where we want it to be — getting it live is just the beginning — but we have a lot of confidence in the idea, and it’s going to be thoroughly rewarding to see it grow and take on a life of it’s own. Following the launch, I’ll be taking more of a back-seat on the project though, which brings me to some more exciting news.

From June, I’ll be joining the team at Alertacall, and taking up the role of Chief Technology Officer. Alertacall are innovators in technology which helps elderly and vulnerable people live safely and independently in their own homes, and I’ve been working with them on and off over recent years to help with the marketing of their business.

They’re at a very exciting time in the development of their business, and the technology behind their services is an important part of that. I’ll be jumping on board as CTO to take over responsibility for the technical infrastructure, development strategy for their products and looking at future innovation. It’s going to be an exciting and challenging role with a company which is at the forefront of it’s sector, full of enthusiasm, and which is improving people’s lives through the use of technology — something I’ve become increasingly passionate about.

Although most of my time will be taken up with this new role, I’ll still be splitting my time with other little projects and servicing our existing client base, providing consultancy and generally keeping one toe in the water. For the next several months at least though, this will be my main focus.

So, new horizons all round. 2013 is shaping up to be an exciting year!

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