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Rachel's story

In the three years I’ve been here I’ve developed for web, mobile, Google Glass, Apple Watch, and more – there’s no better place in Scotland to be a developer.

Mobile Developer
Graduated in 2012 from the University of Dundee

Rachel's Story

Graduating in 2012 from the University of Dundee, Rachel joined us as a Developer.

When you graduated what were you looking for in your first role?

From the get go I really wanted to work in an environment where you were part of decision making and had an input into what was going on. I also wanted to work somewhere where I could flex my skills on a range of projects – coming out of university I had front end, back end, and mobile development skills and I wasn’t sure where I wanted to specialise. Working in a practice means that I was able to try out a lot of things before focussing my time on mobile development.

What were your first impressions of Screenmedia?

I thought the studio was pretty cool, it had a nice relaxed vibe. You could tell people were working hard but they all seemed to be enjoying what they there doing, which I think is really important when you’re going into a role.

What do you do at Screenmedia?

Right now I’m a mobile developer working with Xamarin. I do some web stuff now and then, but for the last two years my focus has been primarily developing cross-platform apps.

What’s a typical day at Screenmedia like for you?

A typical day starts with stand ups, where we chat about what’s going on in the studio and any project’s we’re working on that are studio wide. After that I have specific project stand ups – a lot of the projects I work on are Agile so these stand ups are a lot more formal. We give our status update, take on new user stories, and so on.

After stand ups are finished I do Code Review, where the team reviews everyone’s commits of code from the previous day. It’s a really good way to maintain best practice and make sure everyone’s on the same page. The whole team does this review – there’s no hierarchy – so I could be reviewing Gordon’s code (who is our Head of Mobile) while he reviews mine.

After all that is out of the way, I start my actual work for the day!

What advice would you give to graduates applying for a career at Screenmedia?

Ask questions and be ready to learn. The amount of knowledge you’ll gain here in your first 6-12 months will be invaluable if you want to pursue a career in an agency. You’ll work with different people and personalities, see different project structures and methodologies – if you stay here you’ll get on well with that foundation of knowledge, and if you go onto other things you’ll be well equipped to deal with whatever agency life throws at you.

Do you have any pet projects on the go? What are they?

I do, but they’re top secret! I’ve got a few things for Apple Watch in the pipeline…

What kinds of training have you experienced at Screenmedia?

A lot of the training I’ve had is on the job, but right now I’m doing Xamarin University with the support of the mobile team. At the end of that I’ll be a certified Xamarin developer.

What’s your favourite thing about working here?

The people I work with and the range of projects we get exposure to.

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned here?

Not to be afraid to speak up and share your thoughts and knowledge. As a new member of the team you assume people who are more experienced know everything (certainly more than you), but in order to go forward everyone has to speak up. We’re all reading different things, experiencing new stuff – bringing new ideas to the table is the only way the practice will continue to grow.

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