8 November, 2016

Meet Graduate Software Engineer, Tara

Meet Tara – after studying Multimedia Computing at uni, she wanted a role that involved both the design and build of technological products. She found it at M&S.

“It was right time, right place for me. The digital team at M&S was pretty new but growing rapidly and I could see the opportunities ahead. I also liked the thought of working for a household name and a fantastic brand that I could be genuinely proud to be part of. I joined the Graduate Scheme through the ‘IT’s not just for boys’ event, and it was great that M&S wrapped up its hiring process and made me an offer months before I graduated so I could concentrate on my finals. 

“Within M&S Digital, I work in shopping on marksandspencer.com as part of the Product Display team. We’re currently looking at creating reusable templates for product display pages that are responsive and modular. At uni, we looked at best coding practices rather than specific programming languages and I’m now using those practices to develop new features and get them released. It’s very much front-end work using Angular JS and Mustache but there are opportunities to work with APIs, test frameworks and back-end languages.

”My first year has been full on. Early on, I spent time pair programming with members of my team to get up to speed with the languages. We’ve trialled reverse mentoring through which a ‘newbie’ mentors an experienced member of the business and I had to give a presentation on what’s going on in digital development. All Engineering graduates attended ‘Beyond Conference’, which was a great chance to meet other new developers. And there was also a design week to come up with innovative ideas for the basket and checkout area of M&S.com. We worked in teams to come up with the ideas and then build prototypes in a hackathon day. After presenting the prototypes internally, we tested them on our customers to get their feedback. A really fun experience!

“I love the freedom that M&S has given me to try new things and the feedback we get is pretty instant. And how many companies give their engineers time in the week to learn new skills and get involved in projects beyond their day jobs? There’s a good team spirit, too. On a standard day, we’ll all get together at 10am and update each other on what we’re doing.”

If you're keen to explore our graduate digital roles, find out more and apply here.

Inside M&S