Each week we interview one of our members to find out a bit more about them and their work in the Greater Manchester digital sphere. This week we're speaking with software consultant, Codurance.
1. What does your organisation do?
We are Software Craftsmanship consultants; we build well-crafted software and focus on helping client development teams improve their continuous delivery processes and practices. We call ourselves Craftspeople to express the passion we have for creating well-crafted software.
We believe that software should continuously add value to the business with an inherent quality that allows for change. We are known for our expertise in XP practices, continuous delivery, software architecture, cloud solutions and infrastructure engineering.
2. What do you think is currently the biggest issue facing the tech industry?
One of the biggest problems in the tech industry is that we’re lacking a consistent flow of skilled software professionals; a systemic problem that needs addressing from a variety of angles in order to encourage people to engage with the profession.
We’ve tried to help relieve the issue by volunteering our time with organisations designed to help those at the start of their development career, providing training sessions and mentoring for these groups. Our goal is to introduce core skills to these groups and to boost their professional knowledge and confidence, thus helping to reduce the skills shortage.
3. What is your organisation’s biggest achievement?
We’ve been truly privileged to work alongside some exceptional clients and challenging projects over the years. One particular source of pride was our creation of an event registration platform for Amazon Web Services, a custom system requiring completion in a 6-week timeframe.
As software is our passion, witnessing the direct impact on an organisation as a result of our involvement is gratifying to experience. Our coaching programmes have received wonderful feedback and often act as a catalyst for client teams to enact positive and lasting cultural change.
4. What would you consider to be your organisation’s biggest challenge?
Like many others, finding future colleagues in a skills-gap climate can be tricky. From our Apprentices to Principle Craftspeople, our team share the desire to help others and continually improve; our biggest challenge is complementary to that in finding the right fit.
In contrast, we’ve been told by previous candidates that they have been apprehensive in applying for a role as they worry about their skill set. With this in mind, we created an internal ‘Apprenticeship’ programme, a 12-week immersive learning experience to bridge the gap and coach new starters on the skills that make a fully-fledged Craftsperson.
5. What do you think the future looks like for Manchester’s tech sector?
As a company that originally began in London, it’s exciting to see the movement of other organisations recently moving to Manchester and the increase in tech-focused events in the area. For us, Manchester was a natural choice of location for our latest office base due to the increase in investment in the region and the number of talented individuals in the area.
We envisage that with the continued increase in helpful initiatives to reduce the skills gap, the opportunities for Manchester will continue to grow.
6. Tell us something that we might not know about your company?
Our Craftspeople are at the heart of our company and therefore we’re proud of our flat structure and strong focus on autonomy. In this spirit, transparency is one of our core values, be it access to the company financials or individual salaries.
The absence of hierarchy empowers our colleagues to initiate ideas that have an impact on how processes work within the business, meaning that any small number of our people can change the way in which we do things. By keeping ‘Agile’ and ‘Lean’ principles at our core, we are always looking to improve, inspect and adapt.
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