Following my graduation from Nottingham University in the summer of 2015, having completed both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in physics, I decided to seek out a graduate programme – looking for the ideal company that would meet my expectations and give me the challenge I need to kick start my life after education.

After wading through a plethora of graduate jobs and bouncing from website to website, I found Keytree. I was impressed by the client portfolio so after some research, I sent off my application and before I knew it – I attended a couple of interviews, completed a psychometric test and was offered a position.

Throughout the interview process, it became evident Keytree would offer a role that best suited my needs and aspirations, and since my first day, they have treated me as an individual rather than just another graduate.

Thomas Howard

Thomas Howard


I started on the Keytree graduate programme in January 2017, and due to my background in physics and my limited development experience, I joined the innovation team. Being involved in the development of cutting edge technology has allowed me to utilise my MATLAB skills, gained when studying my degree which compliments the use of Swift – the language I’ve been learning at Keytree. I’ve also become proficient in the all important software development practices including peer review of code, agile methodology and the use of tracking software such as Jira.

One of the main reasons I decided to join Keytree was the willingness they showed to adapt the role they had available to my interests – and during my short time with Keytree, I’ve experienced a warm, friendly and supportive learning environment, but one that is not lacking in challenges and responsibility. Throughout this period, I have increased my software development skills from virtually nothing to a point where I’m now making valuable contributions to several projects.

One of the most crucial ingredients in my education is the people I’m surrounded by – I feel I can learn something new from anyone. Being amongst an experienced group of individuals who possess an extensive knowledge base on an enormous variety of subjects is a real pleasure.

Learning from these people, in the supportive environment Keytree provides gives me the confidence that l can achieve my full potential. Furthermore, the constant influx of contractors, new ideas and working practices presented to me on a daily basis allows me to develop at a rate I feel wouldn’t happen at other organisations.

Although education is the primary feature and at the heart of most graduate schemes, I have found that several of my close friends, who enrolled on similar but larger graduate schemes have very little responsibility. In my opinion, this is a rather slow introduction into the world of work, as a lot of their focus is on passing exams – and not getting to grips with workplace learning.

“Being surrounded by so many great people makes it easy to set attainable goals and envisage how my career might progress with Keytree”

Pushing the envelope

As a consultancy firm, Keytree works across an assortment of projects at any given time, and this translates to me too. Currently, I’m working on three different projects, two positioned around iOS software development, for Transport for London and a luxury retailer, and the third features hardware development for a wearable device. I must say, working with wearable tech has brought me into contact with new exciting technology, bridging the gap between science and consumer devices.

It’s become apparent to me that development work at Keytree aims to push the boundaries of what technology can offer – providing cutting edge software for clients. This approach means I’m learning the latest development procedures alongside fundamental practices, which are crucial for everyone to know. As you can imagine, working on such diverse projects is exciting, challenging and never ceases to offer up learning opportunities. It’s exhilarating to think that all the different facets of technology that Keytree works with are also open for me to explore.

What I enjoy most about Keytree is being treated as an equal, and from day one, I was given responsibility – using Swift while working on one of Keytree’s flagship apps. Three months later I was flying solo visiting clients. It doesn’t mean that you’re left alone to learn your trade with no guidance, staff go out of their way to help and take an interest in your personal development.

Keytree Support Team

The atmosphere at Keytree echoes the one-on-one learning environment; it’s friendly and relaxed. There’s ample opportunity to socialise too, with regular socials, first of the month drinks and presentation evenings. Also, Keytree has a very flat management structure that is exemplified by the hot-desking system. On several occasions, I’ve found myself sharing a desk with a director!

Being surrounded by so many great people makes it easy to set attainable goals and envisage how my career might progress with Keytree. With the start that I’ve had, I am confident that Keytree will enable me, and actively encourage me, to continue to develop my knowledge at the same pace it has for the first six months. Through a combination of navigating a steep learning curve, an assortment of challenges and real responsibility, you never feel as though you’re a graduate – you are very much part of the team.

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