We threw Brad in at the deep end when he first started, we’ll be honest. Sandwiched between Chris’ cursing and cleaning, and John’s, well, Johnishness… It’s sink or swim for developers at AHOY, and credit where credit’s due – Brad’s survived admirably so far. Will he bring planet dev back down to Earth a little bit? Only time will tell…
You’ve worked at an agency before, what brought you to AHOY?
I had been looking at moving to Manchester but was still in the early stages of looking. I was very happy at my last place and I knew that to move I would need somewhere I could get that ideal combination of feeling like you fit in, but also feeling like I needed to improve and rise to the challenge of a new environment. AHOY seemed like exactly that and I knew when I was offered the job that I had to take it. Thankfully things fell into place very quickly with regards to moving in to a new place and here I am!
How does working at AHOY differ to the places you’ve worked at in the past?
It feels very different at the moment but I think that’s partly due to me moving to a new city at the same time as moving jobs. Some of the development techniques are quite different, most of which I’m embracing and learning a lot from, whilst some I’m quietly convinced I’m going to keep doing my own way.
…Don’t tell Chris.
Describe an average working day for you at AHOY.
First thing in the morning I usually have a quick scan of a few developer blogs to see if anything stands out. If I don’t find anything that applies to the site I’m working on at the moment, chances are something will come up in the future and I’ll know where to go. As I’m very new to AHOY I don’t have many projects behind me, so chances are I’ll just be working on one project for the day. Once I’ve got a few sites under my belt I’m sure my day will be punctuated with amends on other sites every so often too.
Which clients are you most excited to be working with?
I’ve already noticed that AHOY have quite a few bar and restaurant clients, which is always interesting. I really like the work AHOY have done with Steamhaus, that was one of the case studies that stood out the first time I looked into their work. I think from a developer’s point of view, a client’s attitude is more important than their profession. I’ve usually found that the enjoyment in development comes from having clients that aren’t afraid to give a creative team freedom to try something new or different. You get to create something exciting, usually learn quite a bit, and the client gets a unique product that they wouldn’t have gotten anywhere else.
How did you end up in development?
I studied IT at university because I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to eventually go into. While I was there I met a good friend who was a year ahead in his studies and doing web work outside of uni. I’d done some basic web development in the past so I got involved and it went from there. When I finally got round to the web development unit of my course I was already hooked.
How do you find working in Heaton Moor compared to working in central Manchester?
Well, having just moved to Manchester I have never worked in the centre. I like Heaton Moor, it’s a ten minute walk from the station and, as long as its not raining, it’s a nice way to start the day.
If you weren’t in this industry, what would you be doing instead?
I’ve said for a while that I’d like to be a museum curator as I love history and finding out the stories behind things. I’ve also recently decided I’d like to be a chef. Maybe that’s a retirement project rather than a career.
Where are you from originally? How does Manchester compare to your original stomping grounds?
I’m from Blackpool. Heaton Moor is more leafy and Manchester is more lively, but Blackpool has bits of both so neither has been a complete culture shock!
Have you always been creatively inclined?
Definitely. I studied graphic design and photography alongside IT at Sixth Form because I just knew I’d end up doing something creative, but IT was always where my strengths were. I guess with web development I found a nice compromise, I was never good enough at either of the other subjects to make a career out of them, and I always preferred creating things like websites and games in the IT course. That said, I think studying them, even for just a short time, has gone a long way to gear me up for what I’m doing now.
Any albums or songs on repeat at the moment?
Probably too many to list them all… I put my headphones in when I set off to work and don’t really stop listening to music until I get back home. The most popular choices at the moment seem to be Villagers’ newest album ‘Where Have You Been All My Life?’, Neil Young’s ‘Harvest’, early 70s Bowie, or anything by Radiohead or Keaton Henson.
Where’s your favourite night out spot?
I haven’t really been here long enough to have one yet. Anywhere with good music and whisky.
What TV series or film do you recommend at every chance you get?
I’m no good at keeping up with TV series so I’m not the person to come to for TV recommendations. When it comes to films, I always seem to recommend Leon, In Bruges or Moon. They are the favourites by far.