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Mat | Engineering Leader

Personal Profile

Passionate and experienced Engineering leader seeking a hands-off people-focused leadership role in fast-paced agile environment. A leader and catalyst for change with a focus on agile methodologies. A ‘driver’ with a focus on task management and delivery through a holistic approach to people development.

Attends local meetups and “geek nights” to further extend knowledge and be a member of the development community.

Core Skills

  • Methodologies - Shape-up, Scrum, Kanban, Waterfall, XP, TDD, Ensemble
  • Languages: C#, SQL, XML, PHP, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Markdown, Ruby, Jekyll, Python, Sass, TypeScript, NodeJS
  • Testing: TDD, Nunit, Moq, Specflow/Cucumber, Selenium Web driver, pytest
  • Source Control: TFS, Azure DevOps, Git, GitHub, subversion, CVS
  • Cloud: AWS, Azure
  • Database: MySQL, Oracle, SQL Server, MongoDB
  • Architecture: Micro-Services, Volatility, Domain Driven, Event Driven.
  • Software/Tools: Visual Studio, VS Code, Resharper, PhpStorm, TeamCity, PL/SQL Developer, MySQL Workbench, Office 365 suite, Slack, Trello, GitHub, WordPress, Mural, Confluence, Jira, Airtable, Code Climate, DataDog, working copy
  • OS: Mac, iOS, iPadOS, Windows

Side Projects

Created, published, and managed a football statistics website (WordPress, PHP, MySQL) and Twitter account, overseeing organic growth to peak 175,000 followers and global reach. Latest personal project was to redesign of a running club website using Jekyll, a static site generator on Ruby hosted on GitHub pages.

Using Github Actions and GitHub Issues to create a Security News feed for the discerning security professional or engineering leader.

Employment History

Howden Insurance

Howden, formally A Plan, is one of the biggest insurance firms in the world, and the 5th largest employee-owned business in the UK.


Blackfinch Group

Blackfinch Group are investment specialists offering a range of products including tax efficient investments for individuals and businesses as well as offering investment in solar/wind energy and UK start-up companies.

HEAD OF ENGINEERING (July 2023 - May 2024)

Implemented an agile approach to software delivery across three teams building a sustainable pace for product delivery aligned to emerging business needs, set up various team ceremonies, one-to-ones, and. Used a data-led approach recording DORA metrics and through objective setting and coaching saw the average cycle time reduce from 51 days to 5 days. Implemented new ways of working such as refinement and building out acceptance criteria, and unit testing.

Presented Engineering baseline and principles to the group. Increased morale, motivation, and a value-driven team-first approach to work - resulting in more pair programming and TDD adoption. Carried out quarterly and probationary reviews. Hired first QAs into the business. Introduced a progression framework for career development.

Worked closely with architect and IT/Ops to implement RBACs and environment management through IaC. Developed a technical roadmap, architectural review and architectural design records, acknowledging and surfacing technical debt to stakeholders.


Seccl’s technology helps advisers, investment managers, and fintechs of all sizes to operate their own investment platform. Seccl is an API-first technology company operating in the wealth management and financial services sector as part of the Octopus Group.

ENGINEERING MANAGER (June 2021 - June 2023)

Started leading multiple squads in the Investments and Advice tribe with a focus on delivery, empowering, and growing our engineers. Implemented a role/skill matrix and used this during annual reviews - the first time anything like this was used in the company, acted as head of engineering during a senior/c-suite leadership change and aided recruitment of new CTO and HoE.

Currently leading the DevOps capability, a team responsible for cloud infrastructure and developer enablement and support. Developed a roadmap to remove legacy cloud, poorly managed systems to managed services. Helped team deliver an automated client onboarding process reducing cycle time from approximately 6 hours to 3 minutes. Oversaw a DB upgrade well within deadlines and with no downtime or customer detriment. Gave Technical debt and security greater gravitas within the organisation and helped construct a roadmap for remediation. Increased Team happiness metrics by 4 points (out of 10), 2.7 in wellness and 2.4 in overall engagement, 7.1 in relationship with peers from 6 months to the prior 6 months.

Key achievements and projects
  • built a recruitment process and question set for various roles and formalised a fair and systematic approach to recruitment hiring 12 engineers in the first 6 months
  • involved in non-engineering hiring sessions to support other hiring managers. Interviewed and hired peers and involved in CTO and HoE hires.
  • led on transition to GitHub Enterprise and Advanced Security.
  • Led the trial and implementation of DataDog, adding monitoring and observability capability for the first time.
  • replaced custom-built legacy CI/CD process on Jenkins to GitHub actions moving from monolithic deployments to individual components
  • oversaw remediation of infrastructure through a well-architected review with an AWS partner.
  • oversaw replacement of Kubernetes to ECR on Fargate - creating on-demand infrastructure triggered by pull requests reducing AWS costs by 10 per cent.

Higher Education Statistics Agency

Collects, processes, and publishes data about all aspects of the higher education landscape in the UK as the trusted source of HE data and analysis as the Designated Data body. In addition to roles acted as a Product Owner, (certified) Scrum Master, Staff Forum representative, and fire marshal from time to time.

HEAD OF SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT (October 2019 - June 2021)

co-led a team of 30 lead developers, developers and testers, expanding to 46 including test manager, lead developers, lead testers, scrum master, developers and testers. heading up the Data Futures project from a technical perspective in conjunction with a delivery partner organisation.

Key responsibilities
  • Line management, pastoral care, objective setting and appraisals, resourcing and recruitment
  • Member of information security and data protection management group
  • Member of Portfolio and Performance Board
  • Strategy, planning, resourcing and organisation
  • Technical oversight and decision making
  • Close collaboration for architects, product owners, directors, and CEO on project direction
  • Working with third party partner organisations and key stakeholders during requirements, planning, and funding phases.
Key achievements and projects
  • Implementation of a secure development policy, test strategy, technology strategy and tech radar
  • Ensured recertification of ISO27001 security standard
  • Expansion of team by 25% to accommodate work on new transformation program and increasing portfolio
  • Transition from TFS to Git, .NET Framework to core.
  • set up and led Leadership training lunch and learn session with 8 colleagues based on career goals
  • successful business change process to promote testers into Lead tester roles.
  • successful business change to address pay parity and reduction in gender pay gap
LEAD SOFTWARE DEVELOPER (October 2018 – October 2019)

Planning, designing and developing server and client applications. Having a key role in ensuring the best technologies and techniques are used in their development. Development of technical capability and involvement in performance assessment and development of junior colleagues. Working day-to- day within a scrum team.

Key responsibilities
  • Line management, pastoral care, objective setting and appraisals, resourcing
  • Development work within scrum team
  • Setting and delivering on quarterly objectives at group level in line with business’s annual operating plan
  • Product owner for security business system
  • Strategic and high-level planning
  • Fostered good working relationships with government/statutory colleagues
  • Ensuring quality throughout software development lifecycle
Key achievements and projects
  • Setting up regular video training lunch sessions
  • Update and implementation of skills framework
  • Oversaw release of business system move from MongoDB to SQL server and hosted in Azure
  • Supported direct reports through mental health and gender identity acceptance
  • Building and identification of technical debt register and encouraging team to tackle one item per sprint
  • Knowledge sharing sessions and training to colleagues on Agile/Scrum, mental health and design patterns
SOFTWARE DEVELOPER (July 2015 - October 2018)

Development and maintenance of data collection system (c#, MVC, Oracle, azure blob storage) - identify, design, estimate, prioritise and deliver work items in Azure DevOps

Key responsibilities
  • Development and maintenance of data collection system (c#, MVC, Oracle, azure blob storage)
  • Identify, design, estimate, prioritise and deliver work items in Azure DevOps
  • Acting scrum master for the team
Key achievements and projects
  • Led team on new delivery software used by all scrum teams / projects. Under build control and release. XML configuration. Software reads, creates, checks, uploads data in file/oracle to customers, running on a schedule.
  • Volunteered for special team to redesign unistats project - from legacy oracle SQL scripts to xml/c# project with unit tests
  • Selected for project team to oversee redesign of corporate website (outsourced). User workshops and requirements gathering. Subject matter expert.
  • Redesigned lookup service micro site
WEB DEVELOPER (May 2011 – July 2015)
  • Design, maintenance and support for all internal applications (web-based issue tracking, asset tracking, contacts database)
  • Maintenance of main corporate website (PHP, MYSQL/ORACLE) with e-commerce
  • Managed 6 micro websites (WordPress/MYSQL)
  • Support Service desk and infrastructure team as needed
  • Worked on HEDIIP micro site (WordPress/MYSQL)
  • Created and redesigned main website migrating from Joomla 1.0 to 2.5
  • Created web based mobile application displaying provider data, also embedded on main website
DATA ANALYST (March 2006 – May 2011)
  • Designed, created and specified documentation for a new data collection record
  • Generated PL/SQL script to automate manual checking
  • Generated, maintained and published data for high profile performance indicators
  • Trained new members of staff, including new line manager

Education Summary

Solent University

  • Business Information Systems & Business Information Technology (Computing) HND, HNC - 2001-2005

Database management systems, systems analysis and design, computer management, software constructs and tools, data analysis and database design, multimedia and internet development, information analysis, quality management principles, communication technology.

North Leamington School & Binswood 6th Form

  • 2 A Levels in Psychology and General Studies, BTEC in Business Studies.
  • 10 GCSEs including English (double), Science (double), Maths, French, Spanish, and Geography