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Catching up with our new software developer Conor

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We check in with new software developer Conor to discover how he has found his first few months working with our digital learning simulations.

It’s been three months since new Software Developer Conor Bradley joined our Technology team. We caught up with Conor to find out about his experience of joining a new company whilst working remotely and transitioning into the world of digital learning simulations.

“My first few months at Ososim have been packed with learning. There has been a lot to take on board, but I have really enjoyed it. Working with new technologies like PHP and Javascript has already enabled me to expand my skill set. The exposure to customers has been a real highlight. I have worked directly with participants, learning to produce simulation sessions myself and seeing our simulations in action. 

As a software developer, you can sometimes feel quite detached from the end user. But producing sessions has immersed me very quickly in the business, our simulations and our clients. This makes me feel more connected to the business, but it is also vital for creativity. Having seen how the software works, I can suggest opportunities for new visualisations of the data and ways to evolve our simulations even further. 

I have been amazed by how genuinely engaging the simulations are, much more than you would expect training software to be.

It’s a really active way of learning that takes what might be a dry subject presented on a lecture slide and turns it into a gaming learning experience. Participants quickly get involved in the dynamic workings of the simulation. I have particularly enjoyed working with the Hydro Laos simulation, mainly because of the teamwork that it encourages. 

Particularly in the breakout rooms, participants have to work together to make decisions and drive their projects forwards. The characters in the simulation give the participants feedback in real-time on how they are feeling about the project. This means participants learn live from their responses to the actions participants take. It creates an opportunity for experimentation – to try things and see what works to bring the simulation characters on board with the project. Just like in real life, the participants must juggle different agendas to try and find the best route forwards to meet company objectives.

It has been interesting to see participants go into the simulation thinking it is a ‘win or lose’ simulation, that there is one ‘best’ path through the simulation that they should aim to follow. But thanks to the software design, there is much more freedom than that. There are so many different ways to progress through the simulation, and each team will come out with a different outcome based on their decision-making. The simulations are innovative in the way they are so dynamic. This makes them much more similar to the real world, where there is not just one right answer.

Being about to produce our Visible Value finance training simulation on my own now feels like a real milestone. As a new member of the team, you want to think that you are making an impact. It’s motivating to be trusted to facilitate these sessions with our clients. I am looking forward to producing more sessions going forwards, working with more clients, and more of our custom simulations.

Trying to settle into a new company remotely has been different. Communication is so important and our daily team meetings have helped me to get up to speed with what’s going on and feel visible, even when we’re physically apart.

On the one hand, being a graduate, working remotely has been helpful as it has given me the chance to find my own way into the systems and technologies at my own pace at first, without feeling pressured to match my more experienced work colleagues yet. I have felt the benefit of time to work things out for myself and to learn, particularly when reading complex software documentation. 

If you’re in the office together, it’s easy to ask for help. Though I know I could pick up the phone, remote working has made me likely to try and work things out for myself and document them for future reference. Particularly when working with different technology, it’s tempting just to ask someone how to do a particular task. But taking the time to digest the documentation without distraction and master the tool properly will enable me to be more dynamic as I use it going forwards. 

Time spent in the office definitely provides more opportunities for collaboration, problem-solving, and more informal conversation, sharing new ideas. 

Having spent time working remotely in Belfast and some in-person time at the Cambridge Head Office, I am looking forward to moving full-time to Cambridge from next month. Though I still don’t expect to be in the office every day, as we will be working in a hybrid way. This feels like the best of both worlds – a few days in the office to plan with colleagues and share ideas, then a few days at home to really zone in and get things done.

As a beginner, you want regular feedback and to feel you are meeting expectations. Jonathan Knight, our CEO, has been great at keeping in touch and providing regular feedback, which means I haven’t felt invisible, despite working remotely for much of my first few months. 

Getting some of our systems set up whilst working remotely was a challenge that would have been much easier if I had been in the office. But as a result, we now have a clear procedure for remote onboarding. I have also learned a lot from the process. 

It’s great when things go smoothly, but challenges also provide an opportunity to grow and develop.”  

At Ososim, we are delighted with how Conor is settling in. He has already become a real asset to our Technology team, and we are looking forward to his contributions to our work and helping him progress over the coming months. With a whole host of deliveries coming up and development work on new databases and new custom simulations, there is plenty to keep him busy.

 

Ososim is a global learning technology company that helps organisations bridge the gap between theory and practice. We work in more than 85 countries, with major global companies such as Deloitte, Cisco and Korn Ferry, as well as government institutions, leading business schools such as London Business School and IMD, and non-profit organisations such as the World Economic Forum. To find out more about our innovative, engaging learning experiences, please contact +44 (0)1223 421 034 or visit www.ososim.com.

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