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Employee Profile: Meet Natasha Cole, iOS Software Developer at Travelport Digital

What is it like to work at Travelport Digital?

From an iOS developer's perspective it is very interesting.

We have a great iOS community here at Travelport Digital where we hold weekly sessions and our iOS architect is always on hand to help us produce code of the best quality. I work on an airline project with one other iOS developer, two android developers as well as two server developers. This leads to great opportunities to work cross platform for all developers. We also get the chance to take part in internal sessions like nerd herds as well as attending conferences all over the world to further our learning.

WWDC (1).jpgWhat do you do in Travelport Digital?
I build apps for iPhones as an iOS Software Developer. Here at Travelport Digital I create features for the app I work on. We are given a story; this is a plan for a feature our customer would like to add to the app. It will cover the different scenarios of the feature and how it will look. It will also be pointed and groomed by the development team. It is these stories that my daily work revolves around. Building these features involves coding and teamwork with the different platforms e.g iOS, Server and Android in order to make sure we all match up before we hand over to QA. This is just a section of my daily work, we also take part in various meetings and company wide initiatives as well as spikes, bugs and tasks.

What advice would you have for anyone that is interested in working on your team?
I would say to take any opportunity you have to learn and grow. I always prefer to take a story or task that I am not 100% sure I know how to implement, as you will learn more and more this way rather than sticking to what you know. Dare to be daring and learn all you can from the talented people around you. Also have personal goals to know what you want out of the job in order to be happy and satisfied.

What is the favourite part of your job?
There are many elements of my job that I enjoy, one of these is developing interesting and challenging stories. It is that feeling of satisfaction that you get on completion which drives me to do what I do! My team also is a significant factor in this, as they are all very talented, creative and kind people.

What is the best project you have worked on?
The current project I am working on for a major airline has to be the best as they are very innovative in the world of mobile travel technology and award winning. They are first to market for all things iOS which is wonderful for iOS developers such as ourselves.

easyJet Team (1).png

What skills do you use on a daily basis?
My job is not “The Matrix” like many of my friends and family believe. We do a lot more than just programing. A lot of preparation and grooming is done before we develop. This means we use skills like communication, problem solving, teamwork and much much more. For iOS development we use programming languages like Objective C, Ruby and Java alongside tools such as Xcode, Charles, SourceTree, Postman and much much more.

What are you most proud of achieving in Travelport Digital?
Through my years at Travelport Digital I am most proud of integration with FlightRadar24, completing SSL certificate pinning with Trustkit as a company standard and various presentations to the iOS community like Xcakes.

How has your role changed as the sector has grown?
It has advanced through the years, as I have grown stronger and broadened my skill set exponentially within Travelport Digital and am now the longest standing team member of the project I work on. As iOS is such a fast paced environment, new technology comes to the fore constantly, which is great as you are always learning.

Do you have any productivity tips?
Environment is everything to me when working, I find myself ten times more productive in a well lit and bright environment. Be able to walk away from a problem, once you step away for 5 minutes you can get that eureka moment that could save you hours! Also try to automate as many things as you can, where possible and always find time to help others.

Describe your typical day in Travelport Digital
Our days are planned well in advance through release planning. Here we work with the customer to decide what fully groomed and pointed stories we want and have capacity for and separate the work into Sprints. At the start of each Sprint we have planning where we delegate and discuss the stories. Every morning we have a daily stand up that lasts for 15 minutes where we talk about what we did the previous day, what we are going to do for the day ahead and flag any blockers.

Once story development is complete we submit a pull request for review; here we look for suggestions, improvements and approval. Once this is done we would normally merge the code and make a build to be the QA team. If there are any bugs they will be raised here and assigned back to the develops. Once all stories in a release are complete we have a regression sprint where we test the entire Application based on our Regression pack. In between this work we have various meetings like backlog grooming, story pointing and we also have team building exercises. One of our team’s favourites is the Warewolf game.

What do you like to do outside of work?
I love art and painting as well as hanging out with family, friends, and my cat. I attend various Women in Tech Meetups and help out where I can by sharing programming knowledge and representing young women in technology. As much as possible, I aspire to be a role model for young female developers.

What was life like pre Travelport Digital?
I studied Business Computing in DIT, as part of my degree I completed a 6-month placement in Travelport Digital from March 2014 that I applied for online. After my 6 months I went back to DIT and completed my final year. Travelport Digital offered me a role when my course was complete. I finished my finals in June 2015, took the summer off to work in San Diego and returned to Travelport Digital the following August 2015 as an iOS developer, which is where I still am today!

What is the favourite place you have been
I can’t say just one so it has to be Malawi in Africa and Gili Trawangan in Indonesia.

Describe Travelport Digital in 3 words
1. Clever
2. Creative
3. Compassionate

 

Aisling White - Content & Communications Manager

Aisling has over 14 years’ experience in marketing, brand and PR. Prior to joining Travelport Digital, Aisling worked at Hostelworld.com and Sage Software. At Travelport Digital Aisling works on communications, content marketing and social media activity to drive lead generation and customer engagement.

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