Current Role: Software Development Manager
“What surprised me about Tesco was the level of experience and capability in their technology function. I joined five years ago on the graduate scheme. Before that, I did an internship while studying for my computer science degree. A lot of people I went to university with also joined large companies in similar graduate software engineer roles. It was instantly obvious to me that the things I was working on at Tesco were much more tangible.
I could go into a store or onto the website and see the impact I was making. That’s what motivated me to remain at Tesco. I'm quite driven and I try to make a difference. For me, it was about becoming a better engineer. Climbing the ladder, becoming more technical, growing my skills and behaviours.
“The things I was working on here were much more tangible.”
Over time, I started to take on more of a leadership role within small teams. Eventually, I was formally managing a team of my own. And today, I'm a Software Development Manager across three countries: India, Hungary and the UK. I look after 15 people with some very niche skillsets. My job is around supporting the whole team. Facilitating and creating the right environment for them to succeed – and empowering them to make decisions in different time zones.
There’s a great culture here. The people make it a great place to work. And the work itself is always interesting. We can innovate so much more as we remove old third-party tech. We’ve even been able to create a next-generation self-service till. It all started four years ago at a Tesco hackathon. We built an early prototype on an iPad and some of the directors said, “That's actually a really interesting concept, and you should run with it – you might motivate people to think about this more broadly."
“There’s a great culture here. The people make it a great place to work.”
The idea brought together some conversations that were already happening. And it was decided that this was something we should pursue. In the early days of the project, there was a real start-up mentality – we had a project space in the office where everybody who was working on it sat together. Product managers. User researchers. Software engineers. Data scientists. Technical programme managers. We all collaborated until we arrived at one till that really worked – and we trialled that till in a store at our offices in Welwyn Garden City. But that was the easy part. Scaling it up was another story.
We were dealing with multiple devices and lots of scenarios. We were trying to move at pace and deliver fast. We failed a lot, but that’s okay because it’s how we learn and develop. The Product team spent a lot of time applying user research principles to the design, which was really fascinating. This led to the UI being incredibly flexible, very easy to use and intuitive. It was obvious that would lead us to a better result.
“While most places roll out updates four times a year, we do it every two weeks.”
We did a lot of testing with a lot of different people. We really wanted the new tills to work well for everyone, including those with a diverse range of needs and disabilities. So we consulted with organisations like the Royal National Institute of Blind People to make sure we were creating a solution that was really accessible. It means that now, people who are visually impaired can use our new tills independently, which is something they couldn’t do before.
Today, there are 15,000 tills across the UK that have the innovative features we designed and built. Features like being emailed your receipt, and using a toggle to make the font size bigger. The platform infrastructure itself is really easy to use, too. Plus, the tills can talk Welsh. And the overall speed is much quicker, so everyone can be in and out of our stores more quickly.
“The scale of our work makes everything so interesting.”
There's so much in the technology sector that is very abstract. Whereas products, prices and baskets of goods are very real. We innovate a lot faster. While most places roll out updates four times a year, we do it every two weeks. And we work on things in-house, so there’s no need for third-party suppliers. The culture means you get to learn and grow, and you can be a trailblazer. And everyone has an opportunity to make their mark.
If you’re passionate about tech, and interested in the rate of change, Tesco is a great place to have a career. And the scale of our work makes everything so interesting.
Being part of our Technology team means you get the time and tools to try new things. Like the ideas that make life a little better for our customers. And the career progression that makes life a little better for you, too.
Explore our opportunities in your area and across the UK. Find your place to get on in a job you love, everyone is welcome.