Meet the associates: Martyn Whitwell, Tech Lead

Apr 18, 2024
  • 3 min read

In this series, you'll meet our Tecknuovo associates — the talented community of technologists who work on-site with our customers to help them deliver lasting transformation. This month we chatted with Martyn Whitwell, a Tech Lead for the Department for Education.

What attracted you to Tecknuovo?

Tecknuovo got in touch about a project at the Department for Education and my interest was immediately piqued. I had previously developed systems at the Ministry of Justice and very much enjoyed the collaborative environment

What is your role?

I am a Tech Lead on the Get Into Teaching system at the DfE. I help maintain the existing site, build new features, and strive to make it more accessible for all users. As well as coding, I regularly review pull requests (PRs) submitted by other team members, identifying any technical issues arising. Outside of my immediate team I also meet with Tech Leads on other DfE projects where we discuss any issues of that day.

What does a typical day look like?

A typical day starts with catching up on emails, and then a daily stand-up call with the Get Into Teaching team where we each discuss what we are doing and how we are progressing. I’ll try and spend much of the day coding and reviewing, often interspersed with a meeting or two – sometimes a call about infrastructure, or a show-and-tell session where a team member will present a particular topic. I occasionally listen in on user research sessions and find it quite fascinating to understand first-hand how users are navigating our service and where we can make things better.

What makes working at Tecknuovo different from other companies?

Tecknuovo pivoted a handful years ago from a recruiter to a technology delivery partner. They now provide strategic consulting as well as developing capability for customers, so are well-placed to see both sides of the coin – building teams and delivering solutions. They are innovative and agile, actively encouraging synergies across different teams. Being a scale-up there isn’t a process-heavy approach to working.

There is also a genuine focus on the associates delivering systems, as well as the systems themselves.

What is something we wouldn't find on your LinkedIn?

I enjoy sailing and recently became the proud owner of a 50-year-old sailing yacht. When I am not coding, I am usually at the boatyard scraping off barnacles, mixing epoxy resin and generally keeping her afloat.

What's the best part of the job?

A sense of empowerment in that I can do things to make our systems better for thousands of users. I also love that every day is a school day: I am constantly learning about new technologies, and new approaches, and generally new stuff.

How would you describe Tecknuovo to your friends?

A dynamic service provider focussing on delivering quality solutions. Or an innovative technology delivery partner with a penchant for the colour orange.

How did you get into tech?

I studied physics and assumed I would have a career as a researcher or scientist. But a summer job working on the university’s websites and databases eventually transitioned into a career as a software developer. I have worked in a wide variety of environments – small start-ups, large companies, universities and government. I enjoy jumping into a new field and learning on the go.

What's the most exciting development in your field recently?

A Tecknuovo colleague introduced me to named CSS grid lines the other day, and now I don’t know how I ever managed without them! they are a pretty cool way to help layout content on a webpage, without getting swamped by opaque CSS syntax.

To learn more about working as a Tecknuovo associate and browse for current job openings, head to our Join us page.

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