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DevOpsGroup Blog A Year in DOG

A Year in DOG

As the year ends and another approaches, it’s always a great time to reflect on the things that have happened over the past twelve months.

2018 has been an extraordinary year. We’ve raised investment to accelerate our growth, expanded our team, won heaps of awards, attended events across the world, and had lots of fun along the way.

In this immersive blog, we’ll take you through the year at DOG.


We kicked off 2018 by surpassing 45 permanent staff members, the first of many feats in a year of rapid growth. And in a continued effort to close the growing tech skills gap, we officially launched the DOG Academy.


After being nominated by the public and the First Minister of Wales, we reached the finals of the St David’s Awards in the Innovation, Science and Technology category. This was a massive achievement because these awards recognise the people and organisations making a difference in Wales.

Our CEO, James Smith, said: “Over the last 5 years, we’ve created over 60 jobs in the Welsh capital and are working closely with many great companies across the UK. Through our Academy and our relationships with universities and colleges, we are helping to ensure that the next generation of great Welsh talent has a role to play in the technology industry both here in Wales and globally.”


Following five years of hard work and dedication from our growing team, we celebrated our fifth birthday with a ‘This is your Life’ themed party at DOG HQ.

As snow hit the UK, March also provided us with plenty of cute dogs in snow pictures from our team!


Steve Thair, our co-founder and chief product officer, gave an insightful talk on cloud migration frameworks at IPEXPO Manchester.
Our Head of Academy James Harvey and Associate Engineer Nathan Davies spoke to students at the Cardiff University Software Academy about careers in tech and the opportunities within our Academy.


May saw more awards for team DOG! At a ceremony held at City Hall in Cardiff, we were named Wales’ best tech workplace by The Electronic and Software Technologies Network for Wales, ESTNet. The event was attended by Secretary of State for Wales Alun Cairns and 400 guests from the thriving Welsh technology sector.

“Receiving this award recognises the hard work we have all put in place to create an environment which is not only fun and engaging but also a place that maximises potential and performance,” said James Smith.
We were thrilled to see Steve join a panel at Digital Festival in Cardiff to discuss the skills that developers need now and in the future.


June marked an exciting chapter in our company’s history, after we secured £3 million from Business Growth Fund (BGF), changed our name from DevOpsGuys to DevOpsGroup, appointed four new members to our board, and acquired Agile Snap.

We were also proud sponsors of the FairPlay Employer category at the Chawarae Teg Awards, recognising women in tech. And MIT academic Michael Schrage visited our office and held a talk on why customers are key to value creation.


As part of our ambitious growth plans, we launched a shiny new website for the DOG Academy. Meanwhile, Adam Hale (our chairman) was one of five entrepreneurs to be added to Tech Nation’s board to accelerate the growth of Britain’s digital sector.

More awards! In recognition of some of the great things we’ve been doing to improve gender diversity, we achieved the Exemplar Employer Award from Chwarae Teg.


Reflecting months of growth, we secured national coverage in The Sunday Times and were named a potential tech unicorn (£1 billion valuation) alongside the fantastic AMPLYFI, Doopoll, and Wealthify. And Steve wrote an amazing blog post on the importance of culture.


Two years after being crowned Digital Startup of the Year at the Wales Startup Awards, we returned as sponsors. We wanted to give something back and acknowledge the great businesses making an impact in the booming Welsh tech sector.

We teamed up with the Chartered Institute of Marketing to host an event on agile working and the importance of culture.


Discussing the Welsh tech scene, our Content Editor Nic Fearn took part in a panel at the final leg of Tech Nation on Tour, chaired by our Chairman Adam Hale.

In yet another awards victory, we were named thirteenth-fastest growing Welsh business by the Wales Fast Growth 50 and attended a gala at Cardiff’s iconic Motorpoint Arena.

We went to London to sponsor and speak at PowerShell Day 2018, which brought together technologists from across the country.

Our Co-Founder and CPO Steve Thair, CEO James Smith, DevOps Product Manager Ed Pearson, and Principal DevOps Consultant Raj Fowler flew to America to attend DevOps Enterprise Summit Las Vegas 2018. They reflected on their learnings in a webinar.


We travelled to London to run and host the fourth WinOps Conference at vibrant tech hub Code Node. Taking place across two days, it featured talks from the likes of Ian Margetts (ASOS), Steven Murawski (Microsoft), and Ryan Pothecary (Amazon Web Services).

Expanding our presence in the capital, we made Rise London the newest addition to our UK locations. Located in the heart of Shoreditch, our new office will function as a base for staff, client engagement, recruitment, and community events.

Working closely with BCS, the Chartered Institute for IT, we became the first provider to deliver training in its foundation DevOps certificate.


Promising future technologists a year they’ll never forget, we launched our 2019 trainee schemes and held an Open Night at DOG HQ.

James Harvey, Head of Academy, said: “By leveraging real-life practitioner experience and working closely with local universities, we’re on a mission to break new ground and grow the next generation of IT professionals in the UK.

Our DevOps engineer Greg Sharpe, a computer science graduate from Aberystwyth University and former intern at DevOpsGroup, reflected on his experience at DOG in a blog post.

We’re ending the year having more than doubled the team. Want to be a part of #LifeAtDOG in 2019? Then check out our careers page.

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