Karen Cockerill

Karen Cockerill

Web Developer – Tech Team

When did you join the James and James team, and what are you responsible for?

In October 2019 and I'm part of the team of developers who look after ControlPort.

What you're best known for

My cakes!

What were you doing prior to James and James? 

I was a Senior Developer for a company specialising in customer intelligence.

Did you go to uni? If yes, which one and what did you study?

I read Mathematics to Masters level, specialising in Algebra and Fluid Mechanics, at Nottingham University.

Where were you born and raised?

Born in Northampton but spent some of my formative years in East Africa - I miss the sunshine!

Do you have a background in fulfilment?

No. I've worked as a software engineer in diverse industries from accountancy services to fuel injector testing, and theatre ticket systems to market research.

What motivates you to wake up and go to work every day?

I love solving puzzles which is pretty much what software developers do all day. Plus I enjoy the team banter.

What does a typical day look like (if there is such a thing)?

Every day brings new challenges and knowledge.

What words best describe your team?

Passionate, supportive, lively, smart.

What's the biggest change and/or challenge you've experienced since working here?

Shortly after I joined James and James, the Tech team transitioned to working with Agile Methodologies. It wasn't a pain-free process, particularly in the midst of a global pandemic, but everyone embraced the change and worked together to move forward.

If you could choose anyone, who would you pick as your mentor?

Katherine Hepburn or Évariste Galois.

What advice would you give to our new starters?

Don't be fazed by the size of the codebase, ask lots of questions, and know that everyone is really happy to help.

What's something most people don't know about you?

I re-wired the whole house when we did a loft conversion. And everything still works!

Food is a big topic at James and James. What's your fave?

That very much depends on the mood of the day as I love all sorts of food and have dozens of cookery books. Lockdown saw me baking a lot of bread and you can't beat the simple pleasure of that first buttered, warm slice from a loaf fresh out of the oven.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?

The possibility of Christmas on the Kenyan coast with cousins is beckoning. White sand, warm sea, blue sky, fun company. What more could you want?

What's your favourite quote?

Don't put off until tomorrow what you can do today. You might find you enjoy it and you can do it again tomorrow.

What are you most proud of, outside of work?

Being part of a quiz team that beat the Eggheads was fairly satisfying.

Craziest thing you've ever done?

Making a life-size boar's head impaled on a spear, using cardboard and broom handles.

What do you get up to when you're not working?

Write quizzes, cook, sew, work on the continued transformation of my garden, sing with a choir and an opera company, make props for the opera company... Busy, busy busy. No rest for the wicked!

What products can we expect to find you shopping for online?

All sorts of odd bits and pieces for whatever creative project I'm working on next.

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