Joseph Cunningham, Graduate Software Engineer

How have you found your time with Civica so far?

When myself and my fellow graduates started our positions we kept waiting for the ‘but’… everyone we met talked about how much they enjoyed what they did, how long they’d been working here and how Civica had helped them through difficult times. We were waiting for something hidden to jump out because from what we’d heard of the world of work, there’s always a catch somewhere. Three months in and I still haven’t found that ‘but’!

My team has been as helpful as can be, my graduate buddy David Kasali has been a constant point of support and the graduate group I’ve found myself alongside are so willing to help and promote each other. We’ve all stayed in touch despite working in different fields.

Were you nervous before joining? Did the induction relieve any worries you had?

I’ve had jobs brushing up building sites that have felt more overwhelming than getting stuck into a massive project here. Not only do I know that I have something to add, I know if I have a problem, I have around at least five people who I could confidently contact that would do their best to help me.

I played many sports when I was young and there’s something which rings true in every high-stakes situation: It’s good to be nervous: it proves you want it.

My first task during induction was to travel to Bristol from Belfast with two graduates I’d never met before. This fateful meeting happened in an airport café. Anyone who’s since met Ben Quigg, Conor Gormley and I, would say we’ve known each other for years!

You’re based in Belfast, while your team is mainly Bristol. How are you being supported with blended working?

My team in Bristol has been the aspect which has surprised me the most. I expected to feel a bit distant from those I was supposed to be working with but that’s far from the truth. I’m on a call at least every other day with my technical lead, my graduate buddy and so many more. We talk, laugh, and problem solve together and despite the physical distance, I’ve never had such a vast network of people I could contact to work through any problems.

I wasn’t sure about blended working at the start. I wasn’t used to someone giving me, as a graduate, any sort of trust. So it took me a while to get into.

Blended working doesn’t just allow you to work from home and avoid traffic, it gives you freedom to control your life outside of work, however you see fit.

Why would you encourage more managers at Civica to recruit a graduate/apprentice into their team?

I think it’s easy to get comfortable with the way things are. Why fix what’s not broken? I believe hiring someone fresh from University, online University or technical college will allow you to work with someone who will look at challenges and opportunities in a different way. That’s the great thing about Graduates – we’re a blank canvas. We can be moulded and assigned to wherever we are needed in the workplace and, due to our recent history of intense learning, should be able to become well versed relatively quickly.