See your career at Specsavers: Meet James, Director of Digital Technology

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My journey into the world of technology started in an IT support role in the days when the internet was charged by the minute. I always put myself forward for things that no one else wanted to do, like creating and delivering a training course on something I’d never heard of, and ended up as a product manager for a niche digital data product where I worked with an pretty esoteric mix of clients – mining companies, aircraft manufacturers, florists, the US Air Force. My interest in online community took me into content and engagement software where I learnt how to sell technology, and we built out a digital agency with a focus on customer experience, working with some amazing charities and professional bodies. Next was a boutique brand and marketing agency where I learnt about creativity, how amazing great copy is, and how to produce a polished proposal and pitch. Then I moved to Dyson where everything I’d known before was amplified by the scale of demand, investment and pace. I was involved in building the technology that enabled a £1 billion e-commerce business, before joining Specsavers pre-pandemic.

I joined Specsavers in 2019 to be part of the customer experience platform programme (CXP) – the huge transformation that was underway. I managed to do some store visits and a couple of trips to Guernsey before the pandemic arrived, CXP was put on hold and people came together virtually to help the business get through this difficult time. In hindsight, people look back quite fondly on the way we came together virtually and managed to deliver some great things in a really short time. Now as a team digital we’re huge part of the future of the business, building the technology that will underpin the next decade of growth and ambition.

There are so many people at Specsavers who are prepared to help you learn such a complex business and listen to your ideas and ambitions. Culturally, this is such a supportive and people-focused business, but it’s still massively driven and ambitious. That’s a tricky balance to get right.

Knowing that the technology we look after brings literally millions of customers into stores where our colleagues can help them with their eye and ear health.

During my time at Specsavers, I have learnt that glasses are so much more complicated than they appear. A tour of the manufacturing and supply chain sites is jaw-dropping and really brings to life the volumes of complex products we’re dealing with. Above all I have found a place to work that genuinely stands for its values and culture.

One word I would use to describe the Specsavers culture is unique.

Finally, if I’m not working, I’m probably driving cars, reading about cars, watching weird car YouTube channels or chatting on car forums. I also love to cook.

Watch film