A Week in the Life: Joe Hainstock, Zing Developer
4th May 2023
In a series of blog posts, we’re peeking behind the curtain and following Zingers as they go about their day-to-day work. Here, we follow a week in the life of... Morgan, Zing Program Manager.
🕘 I typically work from home but today I’m in our Paddington office, which is easy enough to get to, coming in from just outside London.
As every day, Monday starts with daily stand-ups. These are quick meetings between clients and our development teams with clients to discuss progress, identify blockers and keep everyone on track.
🕙 Next up is work for the Red Cross as part of our ‘Build as a Service’ (BUILDaaS) model, which sees us (Zing) act as an extension of Red Cross’s internal team.
🕛 Lunch! Nothing too exciting, a chicken baguette from M&S, but time is spent chatting with our placements. As usual it turns into a work conversation, and we discuss what they want to do after their placements.
Pictured: At Zing's London Paddington HQ
🕐 The afternoon begins reviewing resourcing for the coming weeks with a particular focus on the tactical and support teams. We ended up with half the company on holiday at the same time not long ago. Never again! Makes us sound very small Although we’re a small team we’re growing fast so we need to make sure we can balance out everyone’s needs.
🕑 Onto reviewing the program of projects and opportunities for the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), a client we take a great deal of pride in having worked closely with for years. Read about the work here.
🕒 Pre-sales discovery (making sure we have a clear understanding of the goals) for NRC’s migration to Flex 2.0. Technical discussions with colleagues and commercial discussions with the sales team.
Twilio is now strongly encouraging customers to move to version 2.0 of its digital contact centre solution as soon as possible. All future product updates and new features will only be released on Flex 2.0, and as such we’re increasingly helping customers make the move.
🕓 Backlog preparation (converting requirements into a ‘backlog’ of items ready for the development team to refer to whilst building the features) for an upcoming sprint.
🕔 The working day comes to an end following a chat with the newly formed Zing Social Council about Q2 budgets and upcoming events. Social stuff had previously fallen under the Zing Staff Council but as we grow, we’ve started forming subsects for different areas. I now chair the Social Council.
🕕 Off to the gym; I’m a big gym fan and try fit workouts in as much as possible.
🕘 Regular daily stand-ups.
🕙 Received an update that a contact centre go-live has been pushed back a week. Reasons for pushing back launches vary, sometimes they occur if the customer feels they need a bit more time to conduct user acceptance testing. This one wasn’t too frustrating as our staff were all available on the new launch date.
🕚 Spend much of the morning investing an issue for a client; inbound messages not coming through. Resolving the issue requires working closely with the development team.
🕐 Acceptance testing meeting with Red Cross; confirming everything from phase 1 has been delivered and is working correctly.
🕒Phase 3 requirement discovery session with Red Cross. Exploring the requirement and bouncing ideas around. I love this part.
🕔 Admin for the upcoming Zing social board games night.
🕕 Off to watch the FA Youth Cup final - a rubbish result for my team, Arsenal.
🕘 You guessed it; regular daily stand-ups.
🕙 Project ops meeting; reviewing all active projects with the project leads. A good session. A few projects are stalling, which is often out of our hands. We take action points to chase these up. We’re working for about 10 different customers at the moment so there’s always some juggling required.
🕛 Revenue ops meeting; reviewing the project monthly revenue. We have ambitious growth targets and diligent tracking is a must.
🕑 Supporting the NRC and Red Cross teams on some build issues. This requires liaising with Twilio support to resolve the issue.
🕒 Session with Zing developer Stefan to review the proposed plan for a super interesting (but confidential) content sharing project.
🕓 Late afternoon is spent pulling together information for the latest entries to a new Shared Template Library that will help a client repurpose and reuse the customer experiences we’ve helped them build in Twilio, in localities across the world.
🕕Board game social night with fellow Zingers!
Pictured: Zing board game night
🕗 Arrive at our Paddington office (London) nice and early to catch up with Head of Dev Dan, and devs Joe and Lucy.
🕘 Daily stand-ups.
🕙 Program catch ups with Chris for NRC and Daan for Red Cross.
🕛 Catch up with Alaska Maritime Physicians (AMP). Review final project progress and next steps. All good. We had a bit of feedback for some tweaks they want to make to the speech recognition in the IVR.
🕒 Internal discovery session for the snooze chat functionality for a client. It's a cool feature that will allow agents to snooze a chat when the end user isn’t responding (giving the user a chance to respond before the chat is closed). There are many ways to approach this from an agent and tech perspective, so we were trying to come up with the best solution for this specific use case.
🕓 Good session with Stefan and Dan to go through the NRC/Red Cross content sharing project. We confirm Stefan’s plan to finish the proposal.
🕘 Regular stand-ups.
🕙 A session to continue the Red Cross catch up from yesterday.
🕚Scoping the snooze chat functionality, both internally and with the client.
🕑Helped resolve support issues.
🕓 Had a session with Zing CEO Julian to think about how we can become more efficient with giving projects on budget. We discuss some of the challenges of keeping to budgets on projects. We compare the set priced projects vs Agile projects. The outcome is to provide Zing project leads with greater visibility about project burn percentage as this should enable them to make more informed decisions when running a project.
Time for the weekend!