Tech Trailblazers

Tech Trailblazer: Peter Morrison

  • Name: Peter Morrison

    Job Title: Graduate Software Engineer at Civica

    What does your typical day look like?
    At the start of each day, we have a project stand up call, to catch the team up on what we've been working on, raising any problems that are blocking progress, and organise tasks to move onto next.

    After that, I get on with the tasks that are assigned to me, raising any pull requests for the others in the team to review my code, and reviewing other team members' work.

    Several times a week, the team hold coffee mornings. This is a time for us to socialise and catch up with each other without talking about work, which is especially important as the team is spread across different countries.

    What are you currently working on?
    Currently, I am working as a part of Civica's Mobile Working Platform team, which always has a variety of projects in development. I am working on CovidCert, Northern Ireland's implementation of a digital COVID certificate passport wallet.

    What inspired you to join this company in particular?
    The culture of the company always seemed incredibly welcoming and an enjoyable experience to work at, with skilled teams working on projects that made a difference. Civica works on many systems that are greatly beneficial for the community in Northern Ireland and around the world. Being able to be a part of that was a very attractive prospect.

    Did you always want to work in the tech industry?
    I have been set on working in the tech industry since my first year of secondary school. No other career path really interested me as much as tech since then. I did computer science for my A-Levels, and it was my favourite subject, which set me up nicely to progress that to study Computer Science at university, which is where I was fortunate to become involved with Civica.

    What's your favourite part about your work?
    I greatly enjoy the technology that my team works with, being able to create cross-platform mobile applications. It is an incredibly satisfying development cycle of being able to test out what I have been working on with actual mobile hardware.

    The team works on multiple projects from a variety of customers with different business needs, meaning that no two projects are ever the same. This provides a great number of learning opportunities and interesting approaches to solve each of these requirements. All the members of my team are incredibly skilled and approachable, which means each day I am always learning something new from them.

    What would you say to other people considering a job in the tech industry?
    There is a lot more variety in the tech industry than I think most people, and certainly myself previously, outside of it realise. I think a lot of people believe that there is one role in the industry of the standard developer, however I was very surprised to learn of the vast options and career paths within the industry, either going the route of quality assurance testing, system design, or leaning into the business aspects of the industry as a business analyst. This means that even if the general role of software developer doesn't interest you, the technology field is varied enough that you might find a different position that is much more suitable.

    How do you see technology impacting our lives?
    I believe that our digital lives are going to become much more integrated with real life in the future, and become much more integral in our day-to-day activities. We are already seeing this with many of the systems adopted in the response to COVID, such as ordering services at restaurants on our phones, digital track and trace systems, as well as digital vaccination passports on mobile devices to enable travel and entry into venues.

    Who inspired you to work in this field?
    My teachers during school were very encouraging and had a passion for the field, which helped me towards deciding that this was the career that was right for me.

    What would you consider to be the most important tech innovation or development in recent years?
    I think platforms such as Microsoft Azure or Amazon Web Service are some of the most important developments of the last few years. They are giving the opportunity for smaller start up projects and companies to become much more competitive, as they can focus their time and resources into creating better products, instead of having to split their limited resources between development and deployment architecture. This allows for greater choice for the public in systems they can use.

    What tech gadget could you not live without?
    Definitely my mobile phone. It is not only useful for convenience of communication, finance and entertainment, but is also integral for my work, as I use it to test out any work I do as a part of my team at Civica.


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