Two years ago, I had a wonderful interview, dare I say my favourite one so far, with our UK COO, Duncan Johnson. He had great expectations for the growth of Spyrosoft Ltd. Little did I know he was right on point with the predictions. So here are, two years later, with two new locations opened in the UK.

So, this time it was my pleasure to have an interview with the Site Manager of our London office, Stuart Ralph. Now, I love communicating and Stuart just blew me away with his positive energy. He nurtures a passion for pan-Asian cuisine, football and golf. And his garden lawn is something to behold. So many questions came to mind, but I tried to keep it short. What a great leader for the London team! I am so excited to share more on his expertise and knowledge.

Stuart, how wonderful it is to finally share more about you on our Spyrosoft blog! Thank you for your time. We can safely say you have settled in. Does everyone finally know your first name is Stuart, surname Ralph or do they still mix them? How did the first months in Spyrosoft go for you?

Stuart: Hi Maria, and thank you for the lovely introduction. I’m absolutely delighted to be here, and yes, Stuart Ralph, it is, although I must admit, my name has been subject to some creative variations over the years, and I blame my parents! Only last week, I got called Ralph, but I don’t mind; it keeps things interesting, right?

My first few months here at Spyrosoft, have been nothing short of a rollercoaster ride – in the best possible way, of course! The team that I have put together here in London has been awesome and the whole Spyrosoft family have been incredibly welcoming.

I’ve had the pleasure of diving headfirst into exciting projects and collaborations. It’s been a whirlwind of learning and laughter, and I couldn’t be happier with how things are shaping up. The biggest thing for me has been the wonderful support that I initially received from the teams in Bournemouth and Wroclaw, and it’s already led to having face-to-face meetings with the team out in Poland. The biggest challenge for me was negotiating the roads as a pedestrian in Wroclaw. You have to stay on your toes if you want to avoid a fine. Not for the faint hearted!

During your career, you have been in many leader/manager/director roles. What key takeaways would you highlight from those roles that you know will help you here at Spyrosoft?

My journey to this point has been quite the adventure! From my humble beginnings of working for The Royal Automobile Club and meeting the Queen and the current King back in 1999, through being an Insurance Intermediary in London to navigating various leadership roles across different industries.

I really enjoyed working for a start-up that was using AI to assist financial due diligence for companies looking to secure large investments. A bit later, I was a Delivery Director of a large-scale tech company (it’s been an incredible ride, too). Along the way, I’ve been lucky to work with some fantastic leaders and picked up a treasure trove of lessons, most importantly the importance of effective communication, the power of adaptability and the magic of fostering a culture of camaraderie and continuous growth.

There have been some nuggets of wisdom that have become my guiding stars, and I’m thrilled to bring them to the table here at Spyrosoft. Some of my previous role models have given me lots of advice but one what sticks with me was, “The early bird catches the worm”, and this is me in a nutshell.

We have challenging times in the IT industry around the world, with some glimpses of hope in the future. What would you say is the current situation in the UK?

The UK IT scene – a delightful mix of challenges and opportunities! It’s like a box of chocolates; you never quite know what you’re going to get! But seriously, while we’re certainly navigating some rough waters, there are rays of sunshine peeking through the clouds. With our recent collaborations with esteemed clients in the media sector, we’re poised to unlock new realms of potential and redefine the future of the whole industry. So, while the road ahead may have some challenges, it’s also brimming with opportunities for growth, evolution and the occasional eureka moment.

One notable trend is the rapid adoption of digital technologies across various sectors. Remote work, e-commerce, digital healthcare and online education have experienced a surge in demand, driving innovation and investment in IT infrastructure and services. Despite economic uncertainties, the UK government has demonstrated a commitment to supporting the tech industry. This includes investing in digital infrastructure, funding research and development and enhancing digital literacy and technical skills in the workforce.

Sadly, there are challenges that persist, such as cybersecurity threats, digital inclusion issues and regulatory changes stemming from Brexit. Despite these obstacles, the UK IT industry is poised to overcome them through innovation, collaboration and strategic planning, emerging even stronger in the process.

What would you say is the best way to attract developers and engineers to join an IT company nowadays?

Aside from the usual suspects like competitive salaries and snazzy perks, I believe in showcasing the heart and soul of our company. That means shining a spotlight on our vibrant culture, our commitment to personal and professional growth. It’s about exposing our experiences, perspectives and personalities that make Spyrosoft a truly special place to work. After all, who wouldn’t want to join a team that feels more like a family than a workplace?

I see you as a motivator, a mentor, a ‘let’s get it done’ kind of leader. What is it that drives you in your everyday life so that you have this positivity and energy at the workplace too?

The secret to my boundless energy and unwavering positivity? That’s a good question…… It’s a cocktail of passion, perseverance and some dose of personality thrown in for good measure. Whether I’m sinking birdie putts on the golf course or perfecting the art of the perfect lawn stripe pattern, I find joy in the simple pleasures of life. I really enjoy watching my daughter horse ride, as this is something that I cannot do, and having a perfect family walk finished with a nice glass of wine.

But perhaps the greatest source of inspiration comes from the incredible team here at Spyrosoft. Their enthusiasm, commitment and willingness to embrace challenges consistently inspire me and drive my determination to achieve success.

May is a Mental Health Awareness Month. In the IT industry, employees deal with a lot of stress, anxiety and other similar states of mind due to the rapid demand for service delivery. What can companies do for their employees to make it easier for them and what do we do in Spyrosoft?

You’re right; in delivery, there is high pressure, lots of stress, and demands across all floors. With this in mind, I have created a safe space for the team to chat about all things not work-related. At Spyrosoft, we’re all about creating a safe space where everyone feels heard, valued and supported. Whether it’s encouraging regular breaks or simply lending a listening ear, we’re committed to championing mental well-being every step of the way. Companies across the industry try to be leaders, and some like to try to keep it simple, such as the KISS model. It’s my belief that you should not let a few people dictate the tone of Mental Health; it’s about listening, being a collaborative team and ensuring trust in your team.

For the last question, what is the goal for the London site in the coming period?

Well, the future is positively brimming with excitement and possibility! From expanding our client portfolio to embarking on bold new ventures, the sky’s the limit for Spyrosoft London (quite possibly). So, fasten your seatbelts because the journey ahead promises to be nothing short of extraordinary.

In the coming year ahead, we aim to strengthen our presence in London and in the entire UK market by forging strategic partnerships, enhancing our service offerings and delivering unparalleled value to our clients. Additionally, we are committed to fostering a dynamic and inclusive work culture that nurtures creativity, innovation and collaboration among our talented team members.

With determination, resilience and a shared vision, we are poised to chart a course toward sustained growth and success for the London Spyrosoft office!

Thank you, Stuart, for sharing the news from London. We are all super excited to see what is next. We will definitely do another interview to see how things are moving along!

For everyone who would like to check current openings in our office in London, here is the link.

About the author

Marija Jurina

Marija Jurina

Employer Branding Specialist