People of Interact: Christine Houlding, Head of Software Delivery
Christine Houlding, Head of Software Delivery is next up in our ‘People of Interact’ series!
‘People of Interact’ aims to spotlight the incredible work our team does, celebrating their achievements and showcasing their talent. During January and February, I’ll be releasing weekly interviews with a special focus on our Engineering and Technical teams.
I’ll let Christine take it from here!
Christine, tell us about your background… ⚙️
I moved into software testing over 20 years ago whilst working for a life assurance company. However, I kept pointing out faults, flaws, and suggested improvements in our systems (fun, aren’t I), so they regularly seconded me to the development team to help test their changes. I took an opportunity to apply for a permanent Test Analyst role there and never looked back.
Since then, I’ve worked for a variety of public and private sector companies, working my way up through Test Lead and Test Management roles. I’ve had the opportunity to work on some really interesting and challenging projects over the years.
I joined Interact as Head of QA and was promoted to my current role in September 2021.
What does your day-to-day look like? 💻
Essentially, I’m the gatekeeper for the entire release and software delivery process. That involves a lot of things, but to summarise, I work closely with our Engineering and Product teams to ensure the right people are working on the right things, in the right way, and to the timescales we need.
I’m also still wearing my previous QA hat and look after the QA function and people, whilst we recruit a QA Manager, ensuring everything we release is of a high quality.
How would you describe yourself in 3 words? 🤔
Curious, Tenacious, Organized.
What/ who inspires you? 💫
My mum. She sadly passed away many years ago, but she was strong, hardworking, amazing at multi-tasking, yet was caring, considerate, incredibly patient and selfless. I try to be like her (but I need to work on the patience sometimes!)
What are the best things about your job? 🎉
In my role as Head of Software Delivery, every day is different and I get to do a lot of multi-tasking which I actually love! I also get to remain somewhat hands-on with regards to QA (always hunting for that undiscovered bug). But the best thing has to be the people, it’s not an exaggeration to say that there is nobody I don’t enjoy working with here.
Do you have a favorite project that you’ve worked on? 🌟
I have favourite Interact projects of course, but the one I’m most proud of working on was a new website for Childline. Testing out the new design and features and trying to put yourself in the shoes of the children who would be using them, it was impossible not to get emotionally attached to the project and a desire for it to be a success.
(If you know any under 18’s you think would benefit from some support, please share https://www.childline.org.uk/)
Why is Interact a good place to work? 📣
Interact recognises hard work and dedication and pushes people to be their best, rewarding their achievements, and often carving out new roles for them when there is a desire and need. Everyone loves to help each other, we are a community of knowledge sharers and problem solvers.
And finally, what do you enjoy doing when you are not working? 🏕
I enjoy weight training (deadlifts are my favourite), climbing big hills with my family, camping, eating cheese, and cooking.
At Interact, we’re constantly on the lookout for talented Engineers and Software Developers to join our technical teams.
You can view our live vacancies here.
Learn more about working at Interact here.