Sophie, our impressively organised Project Manager with a reputation for instant email replies and quick request turnarounds. Has come to drive many of the good things that happen at Sonin. From staying up past 1:00 AM to test and perfect surprise Halloween quizzes, to instigating Dev of the Week to make sure our Developers’ efforts do not pass without notice. Earlier this week we sat down with Sophie to see how she’s finding life at Sonin and what it’s really like being a Project Manager at Sonin.
How long have you worked at Sonin for and how have you changed since you started?
This month will make it literally a year since I joined.
Have you worked in any other roles?
Before I joined Sonin I worked as a Project Manager at a different company, and before that I worked as a full-time researcher for four years during my Ph.D. Which then in my final year turned part-time while I was studying full time, so in all the roles I’ve had, I’ve needed to be very organised.
How does your role at Sonin differ from your other roles?
I found working as a Researcher to be a very independent role, that could at times become a bit lonely. Being responsible for delivering a huge project on my own meant I had to play the role of both the Researcher and Project Manager. My role at Sonin, on the other hand, couldn’t function without me working with other departments and that’s perhaps why I love it. Being able to work with teams from different cultures and diversities that all have different expertise is probably one of my favourite things about being here and it’s where I get my energy from.
What’s it like working at Sonin?
It’s quite a fast-paced environment, where we’re either working across different departments in preparation for new projects or we’ll be reaching out to clients to discuss live projects. While at the same time we’re always conducting Retrospectives to reflect on what we’ve just done to see if there’s anything we could have done better, how our expectations before the project compared with the outcome. So, there’s never nothing to do, it’s never boring and things are always happening.
What is your favourite thing about working at Sonin?
It has to be the people, which might be a bit cheesy I don’t mean it to be but it really is, well the people and what we do. I get really excited by the projects we produce but the reason I said people is because behind our products are the people who produced them. Right now, Sonin is on a really exciting journey with our focus on products, design, and development and seeing the expertise that’s coming out of the team is really exciting and it’s what makes it great coming into work each day.
What’s a typical day like?
It’s quite hard to say because through the day I’ll be working on a number of projects at once, and my focus for the day is always changing as live issues develop and become priorities. But typically, my main duties generally revolve around helping the developers understand the requirements that have come in from clients. While at the same time being the first point of call for our clients, which means throughout the day I’ll be providing our clients with constant communication on the work we’re doing, the status of the project and responding to their requests.
How have you changed since you started at Sonin?
Before I came to Sonin I was a bit unsure if being a Project Manager was right for me. I’ve always known it was a position that played to many of my strengths but I wasn’t 100% percent convinced it was necessarily right for me. That was at least until I came here and realised this is where I fit in and where I want to be. Which has not only helped build up my confidence but it has also been brilliant for my career as the things I am doing now I didn’t think I would be doing this quickly and at this stage of my career.
What role do Project Managers play in our development process?
I’d like to say quite a lot, right from the start we discover and define the requirement for the Developers and with the help of our Design Team start scoping out those requirements to help organise the workload. Throughout the development process, I respond to any inquiries or questions our clients might have and I’m always in contact with them about what stage the app is in. As our development progresses, I begin Unit Testing in line with the new features that are being introduced into the app and Regression Testing to make sure the product is in line with our client’s expectations.
Towards the end of the project I discuss with our clients the go-live plan, the countries we’re launching in and what needs to be done to get the app set up on the App Store. Which usually involves working through the release with our Developers and setting up the relevant test emails to the stakeholders involved. So, all in all, I’m involved quite a bit in our development process.
Are there any projects you’re really proud of?
Alpine was the first big project I worked on when I joined Sonin and it was also the project where I was given the freedom to expand our communication with clients from monthly reports to weekly task breakdowns. As the project progressed, I built up enough trust in me to also expand our internal analysis into more frequent and less formal Retrospectives. I’m really proud of the Alpine project because it wasn’t easy to introduce and continue many of the processes we formalised with Alpine, especially when we were managing multiple projects at the same time. But also, because it was later fed back to me that the client had been really happy with how the project had been managed and that’s helped us continue to work with Alpine to this day.
Would you recommend other people become a Developer at Sonin?
One of the great things about being a Project Manager is that you get to work with really amazing people on a diverse set of interesting and exciting projects in the tech industry. And the best thing about being a Project Manager at Sonin is that there’s always an opportunity to grow and try new things as you develop and build the best products. So yes, I would definitely recommend it.
If you don’t see your role in the list but still want to join the Sonin Team, then we would love to hear from you. Please email email@example.com with your CV to discuss your requirements. We look forward to hearing from you.