Have you ever wondered how the Home Office harnesses cutting-edge technologies to serve the citizens of the UK and deliver transformational projects? Wonder no more as we sat down with Osama, Associate Technology Delivery Manager, to discuss how he got into tech and what it is like to work in the Home Office’s Digital, Data and Technology (DDaT) team.
Having always had an interest in technology, it was natural for Osama to study Computer Science at university, but what really helped him keep his tech skills sharp was experimenting with systems such as Linux, Mac and Windows as well as different programming languages. Prior to joining the Home Office, Osama worked in project management in the education sector. He soon realised he could combine his passion for tech along with his new project management skills, and hasn’t looked back.
What attracted you to work at the Home Office?
I was particularly interested in working in a public service role. I was impressed by the way the Home Office’s DDaT team is always looking to improve and deliver digital products that will serve the public in a better way, which was exactly the type of work I was looking for. The opportunity looked amazing and the way they support career progression and professional growth really cemented my decision to join the team. I’ve now been here for over 9 months, and I couldn’t be more excited to see what the future holds.
What does your current role entail at the Home Office?
I’m a Delivery Manager handling multiple projects, which really suits my skillset. I am responsible for leading, project planning and ensuring that every project is delivered on time, within budget and meets the criteria of the organisation. To achieve this with every project I start with an initiation stage. This is essentially planning where we define the project objective, and the outcome of the project and assemble the project team. After mapping out all the moving parts, I then have enough information to plan the budget.
Once the complexity of the objective has been understood, I will develop a project plan, highlighting the timescales of the delivery and making sure we have allocated enough resources. Then comes the execution phase where I closely monitor the progress of the project and communicate regularly with the team to resolve any issues or risks that come upon delivery. I also have regular meetings with business stakeholders to ensure that they are kept up to date with the progress of the project and are aware of any changes made. When we have hit a certain stage of the delivery time frame I will then set up retrospective meetings to analyse what has been achieved so far and to action any further changes that are needed.
What's been your highlight so far?
It would definitely be the process of transitioning into a project management role within technology and the challenges that it brings. It's definitely a change of pace for me, which I enjoy. I also embrace the challenge of picking up and learning new technologies and tools like Jira and Confluence, it's been a learning journey.
Another highlight would be the agile project management aspect, which is a big thing within my office. The main concept is to ensure we deliver projects in accordance with the agile management principles and make sure that all teams involved are aligned. This is a new way of working for myself so learning these agile principles has made me a better Delivery Manager.
How does the Home Office support professional progression/upskilling?
Within the Home Office, and within the DDaT teams there's a big emphasis on development opportunities, which I think is great. There are mentoring programmes that help you develop the skills that are needed to go to the next level in your career. There are also opportunities to move sideways and learn about other teams within the business. For example, if you are working as a Delivery Manager but want to become a Business Analyst, you are able to shadow teams to learn more and eventually transition into a new role. This flexibility to move into different teams is a great way to grow as a tech professional.
How does the Home Office support you holistically? What are the benefits and perks of working at the Home Office?
There's a good package of holistic benefits. We can be given vouchers in recognition for outstanding work, and access online courses for upskilling in a specific area. My favourite would have to be the opportunity to volunteer for a cause of your choice. You can volunteer for up to 5 days, which I think is incredible. We also have opportunities for flexible working, which works perfectly for me and really adds to my work-life balance.
Find out more and apply