Meet Nicola: one of OpenAgent's front-end developers!
Meet Nicola, "I'm a front-end developer here at OpenAgent. The easiest way to describe front-end development is the process of transforming data and designs into an interactive user interface (UI)."
My focus since starting here has been around customer-facing products, such as SmartSearch. More recently, though, I've started to also dive into the world of internal and agent products too.
What drew you to your role? Why did you want to pursue this career?
At the age of 16, I actually wanted to go into the theatre and tailored all my further education towards that; but I was one subject short, so I decided to also take on Applied ICT. Within those 2 years, my love for coding was born. I went on to study a computing degree and landed my first job out of uni at a digital agency as a Front-end Developer.
"At the age of 16, I actually wanted to go into theatre and tailored all my further education towards that; but I was one subject short, so I decided to also take on Applied ICT. Within those 2 years, my love for coding was born."
What is your biggest achievement to date at OpenAgent?
There have be many memorable moments and achievements in my past 2 years at OpenAgent, but something that still really stands out is during my first month here.
We had just started a partnership and got a new co-branded product out in 2 weeks. At first look, I honestly thought "It's just one page - it should be pretty simple." But little did I know.
This product was based on our original property pages but had a whole new design and lots of extra data added onto the page. Also, because the new design wasn't static, the content and data would swap out based on the URL. So essentially, we were producing a unique "property page" for almost every address in Australia; in 10 days.
This meant that the back-end developers had to create new APIs, while us front-end developers had to develop a fully responsive user interface and link up the APIs with falls backs for every case where data could be missing; not forgetting, of course, being cross-browser perfect.
"This experience was the moment I knew OA was the place for me."
Let's put it this way: I learnt A LOT! This experience was the moment I knew OA was the place for me. Everyone on the project worked as a team, we had a great laugh and, surprisingly, I didn't really feel under-pressure. We set small goals so each step was an achievement, we de-scoped if necessary and we celebrated as a team once it was live. This is the finished product.
What are you looking forward to working on in the future with OpenAgent?
I'm looking forward to seeing OA develop - especially from a tech perspective. We have lots that we want to do and improve on, and being part of the decisions in how we do that makes me excited.
What do you do in your spare time/on the weekend?
I'm a keen traveller, so any chance I get, I am off on an adventure! Whether it's hiking the Tongariro Crossing in New Zealand or doing a road trip in Tassie over a long weekend, I'm in.
Within the last year I've also really gotten into fitness! I train at least 3 times a week and I've recently signed up for my first Tough Mudder.
Tell us something interesting about yourself!
I'm English - is that interesting? I've lived in 4 different countries over the last 6 years.
"I've lived in 4 different countries over the last 6 years"
What made you want to join OpenAgent?
In all honesty, I just had a good feeling about the place! I had a few other interviews around the same time as my application for OA, but I decided on this place because it just felt like the most natural choice.