Our People

Don't take our word for it - take theirs.

Hannah Coral

Hannah Coral

BSc Physics, University of Bristol

I started at Alfa in October 2014 having taken a year out after completing a degree in Physics. Though I was unsure of exactly which field I wanted to go into, Alfa appealed to me as it spans both the IT and Consulting industries and provided an opportunity to learn to be a software developer. I had touched on some programming as part of my degree, but wasn’t particularly confident and so I was grateful for the chance to learn whilst being able apply these new skills. I was also impressed by the job review profiles I had read, which praised the people and working environment at Alfa, and I can now honestly say that this is still a highlight of working here.

After the initial induction training, in which we were taught both the technical essentials and any Asset Finance basics needed for the role, I was assigned to a project on a client site. My team was responsible for supporting the Alfa Systems software platform, which had been fully implemented several years earlier. As a Junior Consultant, my primary responsibility was to code system enhancements and fixes, but I was exposed to the entire life cycle of each item I worked on, from the initial requirements and design right through to its deployment.

I was subsequently invited to join a new Alfa Change Management team created to assist one of our larger North American automotive finance clients. The project is based in Texas, which seemed like a world away from London, and at first I was apprehensive about the transition but Alfa does everything possible to ensure things run smoothly, and the team out here has really helped me to settle in - rodeos and all!

I work on the client site and receive daily exposure to the business users, focussing more on the functional consulting side of the role. Where some Alfa employees may lean towards specialising in the technical development of the Alfa product, I chose to focus more on helping the client’s business to support and manage functional change, enabling them to utilise, enhance and tailor Alfa Systems in the most effective way. This project has provided me with a great opportunity to develop the product alongside the users and engage in one of the largest platform migrations for an automotive finance company in America. It has been a privilege to play a part in such a huge project.

During my time at Alfa I have always received the necessary support, and been given ample responsibility at such an early stage in my career, and this has really helped to boost my development. Each project has challenged me and there is certainly a steep learning curve in the first year here, but everyone is more than willing to help and guide you.

Ying Ying Li

Ying Ying Li

PhD Particle Physics, University of Cambridge 

Before joining Alfa I worked as a research associate at the University of Cambridge, after graduating with a PhD in High Energy Particle Physics. Having spent nine years in academia, it was a daunting decision to leave and start on a new career path. But Alfa and its people made it all a seamless transition for me. Six years on and I am still faced with fresh new challenges daily.

One of the many things that first attracted me to Alfa is the variety of different areas in which Alfa consultants can feel a real sense of responsibility from day one. To date, I have contributed to various aspects of the ALFA product life cycle. In one role, I gathered business and process requirements from senior business leads and translated them into functional and technical software enhancement designs. In another role, I delved into the heart of the application to develop code and test enhancements. I have also been responsible for scheduling and delivering software upgrades to our clients. Currently I am based in Michigan, USA, leading the data migration team with one of our newest clients, a top US auto lender. I was part of the initial on-site team and was responsible for drawing up the data migration project plan. I now have the satisfaction of guiding and assisting the client in implementing the plan.

Although Alfa offers a comprehensive graduate training programme, it has been the roles on projects that have offered me the best learning experiences. I have found that my Alfa colleagues are also an invaluable source of knowledge and experience, and are always supportive and happy to help. I feel that Alfa combines the best of small company culture, with the opportunity to work with some of the largest global corporations.

Alfa 's policy of partnering closely with our clients on projects has also given me ample opportunities for travel, a passion of mine, experiencing new cultures and work ethics. This has so far included six months working in New Zealand, an international conference in Beijing, and long weekends away for the Alfa annual conference, catching up and sharing project experiences with colleagues in exotic locations such as Miami, Salt Lake City, Sardinia, Cyprus, Athens and Noosa on Australia's sunshine coast. The company culture at Alfa is second to none, both inside and outside of work, and this is especially important when you are posted on a client site project halfway around the world. 

Leon Atkins

Leon Atkins

PhD Computer Science, University of Bristol

I joined Alfa in 2013 after completing a PhD in Computer Science at the University of Bristol. Although I came from a technical background, Alfa recruits from a variety of disciplines and we were taught everything we needed to know in our initial training.

At Alfa I've had a variety of interesting roles. My first, immediately after my initial training, was in New Zealand. This meant being based on-site five days a week at the client's offices in Auckland, which was a great way to gain exposure to how an asset finance company works. While I was there I had the opportunity to work in a number of different roles, including helping with developments to ensure that the client's software was compliant with new legislation, and liaising with finance users to assist with a new reporting suite. Since returning to the UK, I've continued to work in various roles, and have been able to take on responsibility very quickly - at the moment I run a small client project. The role has presented plenty of challenges along the way, but I have the valued support of a great team of colleagues.

Something I really enjoy about Alfa is that, despite my technical background, I've been able to spend time in both functional and technical roles. This has allowed me to develop a broad range of skills aside from software development, such as project management and financial accounting. The core graduate training programme over the first two years gave me a great understanding of all the core functional and technical skills I needed for my job. Following on from this, I've been encouraged to continue attending training courses. Last year I went to a technical conference, and this year I've been on a project management course.

There is a great culture at Alfa. Every three months we have a company meeting, which is a great chance to catch up with colleagues and find out what's been going on elsewhere in the company, as well as taking part in some fun activities such as bowling or go-karting. One of our recent company meetings was held at the Velodrome in Stratford, where we all had an opportunity to race the Olympic cycling track. Outside of work, aside from the regular Friday evenings in the pub, there are a number of different sports and activities to get involved with. I've been a regular member of the weekly 5-a-side football team, and we also have occasional 11-a-side games, including the annual Alfa North vs South London match, which last year was held at a Premier League football ground. Sadly the prestigious venue did not manage to improve the quality of the football played!