As you can see, I posed for this, even got my good blazer on. (Not wearing any pants)
Born a male I have some how made it to 30 odd years of age. Raised in sunny South Africa I am now taking advantage of my birthright and living in Britain. I have had an extensive 12 year web career and have worked in both small and large agencies all over the globe. Three years back I freelanced in South East Asia. I love what I do and can say that my best and most irritating character trait is my compulsive need to problem solve. If you don’t think that is such a bad thing, ask my missus about it.
Earned a degree in design and communication, but after some time I found coding to be my calling and discovered it takes more creativity than pushing pixels. so a few years back I taught myself how. I can now take a website brief from handshake to completion… and even further. (SEO optimisation)
As a trained designer I understand the importance of something looking good and laid out properly. I have been privy to enough campaigns to know that a failed design means a failed project. One of my key strengths is understanding what can be turned around quickly for development, what design choices are suited to the brief and which are simply unnecessary for the task at hand.
This is where my passion is focused. I can talk geek for hours and am on a mission to get great at it. Just like design, a website that clunks and breaks down can lose a business potential clients and cause endless headaches. This is why I like to be a sure-footed developer, less flash and more tried technique. I am more preferential to the open source languages and not keen on the fly-by-night frameworks.
Right now in my career I am hungry for knowledge and looking for new challenges. There are clear cases that require tried and tested methods to accomplish the task at hand and I have methods that allow me to turn out quality work quickly, but I am self-motivated and like to challenge myself with more innovative ways to complete the more creative briefs.
The first step I take with any brief is to listen to what the client wants to achieve, understand what the brief needs to succeed, and prepare everything prior to writing a single line of code.
I prefer to work using the agile methodology. Simply put, I want to work with my clients and not for them. I find that by breaking large products down into goals and checkpoints I am able to work with them from start to finish. Having them involved in the process and decisions means the project is just as much theirs as it is mine.
Having the client realise their vision through static designs is one thing. But it has to work. I ensure my builds are coded to last and won’t cause endless headaches as the ghosts in the machine take over.
As part of the agile methodology, I make sure that as the development of a website progresses, so does the usability. I pride myself on making sure the client can edit the content management system without a degree in computer science and take all the necessary steps to ensure it meets the latest web standards. Hell hath no fury like a client when their site goes down.
Once a site is ready and looking, oh’so sharp, we are only 80% of the way there. I ensure all my builds are set up and functioning properly in their new environments and that Google falls in love with them.
Once a project has been launched I do not fade into the ether. I am always on call should a bug rear its ugly head and I do not charge to fix what has been paid for. I am also well versed in SEO optimisation and love nothing more than to work on my projects after they are live to ensure people see them. I aim to take care of my clients because I prefer a smaller repeat client base to the constant client skirt chasing approach.