Leaving IBM

Hi everyone,

As many of you know, I’m leaving IBM soon (next week to be precise), and will soon be entering the scary world of self-employment. For the past 10 months I’ve been working at IBM as a Graduate, firstly in WebSphere MQ Test and then in HCS within Emerging Technologies. From both of these roles I’ve learnt a great deal, and have worked with great people who definitely know their craft.

If you’re reading this, then you’ll probably know about FriendCaster, which is the Android app I started last year and was recently acquired by Handmark. Luckily Handmark still want me heavily involved in the development of the app, and I’m lucky in that I will be supported financially through the deals I signed with them to do so. I will be contracting full-time on development of ‘FriendCaster for Android’ from the 4th July 2011, working from my home in the UK.

It’s exciting as I’m getting to take my product from the start, right through to (hopeful) success. It started last July as ‘Blue Notify’ where it just did Facebook notifications and I grew it to become the leading 3rd-party Facebook client for Android. There’s still some way to go, in terms of what we want the app to be, but it’s certainly getting there. With the help of Handmark lots of people are only just finding out about the app, so long may this continue!

Going self-employed is also scary too, especially so early in my career. When you’re in a big organisation, opportunities tend to find you and networking with people is easy, here though I’ll have to go out and actively do these things. The effort and risk in this move is fairly high, but so is the reward and (hopeful) success in the long run.