By accident, really. I've always been quite tech minded; if you put something technical in front of me, whether it’s a gadget or software, I'm the first one to get hands-on with it. I think if you get into that type of thing, you just get more and more interested. Once you start, you can't stop.
My background was originally in business and quality management. I did a Business Studies HND, then a degree in Quality Management and finally a post grad in Human Resources. My first jobs were very much focused on quality management. From there, I moved on to process improvement and did that for 15 years. It was there that I started working closely with the IT team. When I first joined, their processes were all still very manual and paper-based, when much of it could be electronic or automated. I helped teams write up their business needs and translated that for the IT team. I then got involved in the delivery of technology solutions and training. When you present a solution to the user, and they click a button and say, "oh, that's clever", especially if it’s something that used to take them a long time, there's something very satisfying about that.
What does your job at Workpro involve?
I work very closely with our Workpro customers. I'm responsible for documenting the customer's business requirements, and working with them to map their processes to Workpro, to ensure it is set up correctly for them. I also deliver customer training.
I also work with our UX (user experience) designer Irene. We sit down regularly to feedback in both direction. We discuss how we can improve the customers' experience of Workpro and how changes might impact the implementation of the training. Because I work very closely with customers, I can feedback ideas to the Workpro team about new features that might be useful, as well as being able to feed information back the other way about what new features are in development. It's all about communication to make it work.
How do you find working here?
I love it. It's really a great team to work with, and we genuinely do work as a team. Every company says they work as a team, but most actually work in silos and have a blame culture – it's just not like that here. Everyone wants to help everybody else – there is no sense that people don't want to do something because it's not their job or that you can't make mistakes. If you've made a mistake, the team will help you fix it and then look at how we prevent it from happening again. It's just such a friendly, open, honest team.
When I first started, there were a lot of tight deadlines coming up. In previous places I have worked, this would have meant a lot of stress, but that wasn't the case here because everybody helped everybody else, and as a result, the workload was evenly distributed. Everyone seemed quiet and calm – like a swan – serene above the water, but everyone was working hard but not under undue pressure underneath.
We don't just look inward. We all help each other; it's a different culture - it's not about what can I get it, it's about what can we do? We also help people outside of the organisation. During lockdown, a primary school needed laptops for their pupils, so we found them laptops. We are also allowed time during working hours to volunteer for charities. I am involved with a charity called Dignity Boxes. Many people in deprived areas cannot afford basic hygiene products such as shampoo, shower gel, deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrushes, and ordinary everyday things like that. So, people & organisations donate these products, and they are put in boxes and placed somewhere (such as primary schools, homeless shelters, and community centres) in deprived areas where people can go and discreetly help themselves. It's sad, these are things we take for granted, but some people simply can't afford them. We have a lot to be grateful for!
What do you think of Workpro software?
I really like it. I think it does what we say it does, and more. I see all the benefits the customer gets. When I do the training, I like the things that make the customers go, "Oh, that's good", and you start to unravel all the things that they'll use it for. So, from my perspective, that's great. And then when I work with Irene looking at the user experience, I see all the work that the development team are doing, putting new things into it, which is always exciting to see; there are always new things coming along that we can add to. So yeah, I really like the product as well.