A knowledgeable, creative and resourceful technologist with 15 years of experience. I started programming professionally during undergraduate study at Cambridge. I’ve demonstrated strengths in development, software architecture design, and digital product management.
I am adaptable and learn quickly. I particularly relish being part of tight development teams, especially using Python and Django. In previous roles I have sold software to oil majors; signed coffee shops as alpha customers for startups; and been nominated for an award for innovative marketing technology.
Through my own company, I help clients manage cloud infrastructure, select technology stacks and establish rigorous software methodologies (TDD, code review & analysis).
I have greatest experience with: Python, Django (esp. REST framework), Docker, git, Amazon Web Services, ubuntu/Debian, nginx, uwsgi, Ansible + ssh, PostgreSQL + MySQL, Twitter bootstrap, Redis, angular.js, heroku, node.js. I have used electronics, Arduino, Raspberry Pi and React.js in hobby and side projects. In a typical day I use all of macOS, Linux and Windows.
Employment - current
Head of Online Strategy Owlstone Medical2011—now (part-time)
I am lead developer for our data platform, which underpins large medical trials plus R&D contracts with leading pharmaceutical firms. As well as advising on cloud migration for the company’s machine-learning workloads, I help our growing data & analysis teams to learn effective Python and software best practices. We use Agile methods with fortnight-long sprints (until recently I was also acting as stand-in product owner). Originally I was hired to establish the company's online presence. We established a successful lead generation team and have embraced marketing automation, helping Owlstone’s journey to profitability.
Owlstone Medical is developing non-intrusive diagnostics for disease, based on the company’s unique chemical detector. We perform clinical trials and commercial R&D contracts, including the world’s largest breath-based study for early cancer detection. I am lead developer for the data platform handling our patient data and controlling sample logistics.
I was originally recruited in a part-time role to lead Owlstone’s push to sell their chemical sensors and analysers online. Owlstone compete against, sell to and partner with $multi-billion firms, and we successfully generated sales through website traffic (content marketing, remarketing, paid ads and organic/SEO), online lead generation tools, and via focused campaigns on industry websites. My integration of Marketo (marketing automation) and oLark (online chat) led to a nomination for the final of Marketo’s Innovation Award in 2011, and I presented at several Marketo UK users’ group meetings.
I pioneered the adoption of open source operating systems (Debian) which enabled the network connectivity of newer, online instrumentation. Internally, I lead by example and encourage the uptake of new development practices and tools, such as Python and git, code review and TDD.
Key technologies: Python, Django, Django REST Framework, PostgreSQL, Ansible, nginx, angularjs, Docker, git, ubuntu/*nix, Amazon Web Services.
Acting like an outsourced CTO, I have migrated a nationwide system for digital signage to AWS; modernised the stack; developed novel online devices; and established rigorous development practice (all with collaborators). With thousands of constantly connected devices, the client’s system would’ve been called IoT if the term had been around 10 years ago. I consult for local tech firms, frequently helping them with APIs and UIs for devices gaining network connectivity for the first time.
I established my own company to work as a contractor. The majority of my work is development of large systems hosted on AWS which provide content distribution, centralised management, apps and third-party software integrations for two nationwide digital signage networks. Working with Telemarq Ltd, I helped one client migrate their entire system to the AWS cloud, where it now serves four times the original number of clients.
Alongside other work, we maintain and extend this large legacy codebase. It provides secure control, monitoring and software updates for thousands of constantly connected devices in doctors’ surgeries, retail premises and garage forecourts worldwide. I implemented a staging environment, rigorous configuration and deployment tools, and secure, cloud-based continuous control of thousands of "headless" connected media players. The platform is well placed for further planned growth, despite being owned by a company with no in-house developers. Recently we have been supporting and hosting for other contractors as the amount of work scales up.
The same client also commissioned us to securely mirror their internal accounts database into the cloud, building a standard REST interface on top of it to enable live integration with other web tools, including e-commerce.
As well as consulting with a number of local tech firms, I have commercialised a small number of hobby/side projects (multi-tenant pupil-tracking database, online lead generation tool, unique system monitoring framework).
Key technologies: Django, celery, Redis, git/bitbucket, Twitter bootstrap, Amazon Web Services (EC2, Elasticache, RDS, Elastic Transcoder, S3, CloudFront), Ubuntu, nginx.
Employment - previous
I joined this startup before a rapid expansion, but had to move on when the company went into administration. In two years I helped key recruits grow into a support team and kickstarted a new revenue stream as a key member of a new professional services unit.
I joined this Cambridge startup knowing the role would use all of my skills. Initially, Camvine needed a technical lead to look after their growing client list and I provided this in addition to vital pre- and post-sales work (product demos, exhibitions, on-site training and installation). We were able to recruit and over 18 months my support and testing team grew to three people.
I helped Camvine establish a new business unit and revenue stream, acting as a developer and consultant within a new team of four. We won contracts with larger firms and built successful, innovative solutions for clients in varied industries. Examples included patient call systems for medical practices, content management and delivery for a public-facing advertising network, and waiting room information screens with live data.
I started professional web development with Spiral Software during summer holidays as an undergraduate in 2000 and have held roles in technology research, software sales and marketing. I spent a year working, volunteering and travelling in 2008-09.
Managing multidisciplinary teams across London and Cambridge offices, I championed the adoption of new technologies (collaboration tools, analytics, social media metrics). I led a key project to establish SharePoint as an internal collaboration and document management tool, negotiating internally, appointing skilled contractors and persuading colleagues of the benefits. A brief employment as I was recruited to join Camvine.
Year-long work/travel period. I volunteered as a field assistant for 6 weeks in Tooloom National Park, Eastern Australia, studying bowerbird populations. As a freelance worker for EFTPlus in Dunedin, New Zealand, I helped a single-employee start-up launch new products for retailers. I produced a web site, publicity material, ran a phone campaign, held face-to-face meetings with retailers and initiated partnerships with Retailers Associations and trade bodies in New Zealand. The products were developing at the same time and I fed back experiences from early customers to improve the software’s capabilities. I did some remote consulting for Qi3 (see below).
I investigated new markets for innovative technologies worked to encourage innovation based on I.T. and physical sciences. I provided sales and marketing, technology development and brokering services to private sector clients (academics through small enterprises to large corporations). This involved carrying out visits, desk-based research and interviews to uncover and exploit new opportunities for innovative businesses.
A senior member of the software sales team which built and maintained corporate and technical relationships with three oil majors (BP, Chevron, Shell) and over 40 other oil refining and trading companies (Trafigura, Mercuria, Vitol and others) worldwide. I was involved in complete sales cycles from technical pre-sales, through commercial negotiations, implementation and training. I consulted for established clients on the handling and profitability of crude oil data, designing and presenting custom training courses.
I represented Spiral at petroleum industry conferences, generating sales leads. I closed over £1m of contracts with refiners in Europe, Colombia, India, Thailand and Russia.
I oversaw the distribution and release of products, meeting clients’ expectations while co-ordinating relevant internal teams. I built the first web-based licensing service for the software and successfully managed the launch to all clients.
I was principal developer for Spiral’s leading network tool – installed on worldwide servers in BP, Chevron and Shell and used globally as a business-critical source of crude oil information.
Responsible for designing robust code and web interface for a high security, computationally-intense application with hundreds of users, I selected a load-testing tool and put in place a successful testing program.
I stretched my interpersonal, organisational and problem-solving skills, communicating with clients to draw up technical requirements while co-ordinating coding, testing and documentation across several teams.
Education and qualifications
Research project on atmospheric modelling.
Research project: mathematical modelling of tropospheric ozone pollution. 50 year gaseous emission forecasts and Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s economic development scenarios added into an existing two dimensional time-step model of the Earth’s atmosphere.
Awarded College Prizes and Stobbs prize for Natural Sciences; elected a College scholar.
Awarded School Prizes in Physics & Chemistry. A-levels AAAA; 9 GCSEs inc. Russian. Additional Chemistry & French.
Outside work, being a Dad and tinkering with technology keeps me pretty busy. I squeeze in some cycling, a love of birds, an occasional photography habit and reading/getting excited about science thanks to a slightly non-textbook GTD system. My first website won awards in the late 90s and is still online.
I love the outdoors and nature. I’ve travelled in Vietnam and China; Yukon Territory, Canada; Alaska; Jordan; Eastern Australia (volunteer biological fieldwork); New Zealand; Fiji; Central America; Madagascar.
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© Richard Morrison