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Client Server Technology Recruitment
Client Server Technology Recruitment

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Meet the tech team who finds scrum too slow

If you pressed them for job titles, Joe Horsnell and Harry Lascelles would call themselves tech leads. But they tell Client Server’s Michael Oliver why hierarchy isn’t as important as passion and curiosity.

Michael Oliver: Not everybody would have heard of Bamboo Loans – tell me about yourselves?

Harry Lascelles: We are a fintech company specialising in consumer finance.

Joe Horsnell: Bamboo was initially a guarantor loans company and that's still part of our business, but by volume, we focus more on unsecured lending now.

MO: You have something of a flat team structure – how would you describe your jobs?

HL: Titles aren't something that we lean on much here. Depending on the temperature, I've called myself principal software developer, lead engineer, tech lead, all these kinds of things. I use tech lead most often.

JH: We're an interesting team because Harry and I both came from working at UBS, where it's very corporate and regimented, but we're very flat structured here. We're all part of the team, but it's not like people report to Harry and me.

MO: How did you get into software development? Were you the kind of kids who messed around with Q-Basic and the like?

HL: My dad first showed me programming when I was about four years old, so going way back. IT has just always been in my blood. He was a journalist for the FT, so he also taught me about financial products and services. Finding something where I could bring them together was a real bonus.

JH: I just was interested in computers from a very young age. My dad got a VIC-20 in the early '80s. My first job was at Logica, for a few years, then my first move was to UBS, where I met Harry. I was at UBS for over a decade, doing the things that you need to do to progress your career, so doing less and less the things that I liked doing, like building software and using computers, and more and more management, building and running teams. Then this opportunity came up to go and work at a start-up, so from UBS with tens of thousands of employees, and departments within departments, to a four-person start-up. A bit of a change.

MO: How did you find that transition?

JH: Personally, I'd just become very tired of the big corporate environment. It just felt like we weren’t achieving anything.

HL: For example, if you wanted to create a database, you had to fill out forms in triplicate. In any big organisation, spinning up test infrastructure, or even production structure, can take quite a while. Moving to a start-up, a small company, has been such an eye opener. To any of your readers, I would strongly recommend it. I didn't consider it when I was taking on my first job, but it's something I should have done.

MO: What made that possible?

HL: From day one, we had a CTO in Rob Harrop - one of the authors of the Java Spring Framework – who had made great initial IT choices. Straight out of the gate, we were on the cloud and AWS. I can’t imagine doing a start-up 20 years ago without cloud, it has been a complete game changer.

Find out how fast Bamboo Loans plans to deploy their releases by reading the full interview on our blog

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