OVO Tech Blog
OVO Tech Blog

Our journey navigating the technosphere



A day in the life of... Kate Ross-Smith

Name: Kate Ross-Smith
Role at OVO: Software Developer in the Energy Contracts Team

My day usually starts at 6.30am. After taking my dogs for their morning walk, I cycle 15km to the office to kickstart a day of programming in Clojure. I’m based in Bristol Templeback, a trendy new OVO office that has large breakout areas and loads of writable walls, which are really good at encouraging teams to collaborate.

Then, when I arrive at work, I meet the team for breakfast. I do this most days because it’s a great way of finding out what everyone’s working on – although the conversation isn’t all about work! By 8.30am, I’m usually at my desk, ready to crack on with the day job.

I’m part of the Energy Contracts Team working on the Orion energy platform. Our team is responsible for managing the internals of energy contracts for our new realtime billing platform. My story at the moment is around creating a day’s standing charges, storing that information (so we can see what we’ve charged in the past) and putting that on Kafka for other teams to pick up.

At lunchtime, I take a trip over to our Rivergate office for lunch in our awesome subsidised cafe run by Friska, before dodging the raindrops to head back to my desk. My afternoons don’t just continue with more of the same from the morning - they can be really varied and often very social. For example, we have a variety of cross-team tech communities that often meet in the afternoons, and we also meet as a product group once a month to showcase what we’ve achieved.

Knowing that OVO have a super flat tech structure was a big draw for me, but since I’ve worked here I’d say that an unexpected bonus is getting to trial new energy industry tech at home before it’s released. Things like the second generation smart meters, new IHDs, home batteries, and even parts of the new energy platform. It means that in tech we’re really in touch with what we’re supplying to our customers – and of course we get to iron out any glitches before we release them.

I leave work at about 4.30pm, go home and completely unplug from work. Maybe I’ll come back in to town to boulder with the OVO climbing club, take the dogs to training, head to my local triathlon club, or just stay at home playing computer games before clambering into bed at about 11.30pm, so I’m ready and refreshed for another day of coding tomorrow.

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