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Meet the team

These are some of our brilliant team members.

Ayala Gordon, Associate Director, Digital User Experience

As a Russell Group university, we’ve been looking for ways to make a difference to people’s lives since we were founded, so the vision of my team makes perfect sense to me: we are people focused and we design services for and around people’s needs – whoever they are.  

It means that as a team we are open, agile and have a relentless focus on our end-users - existing and new ones. We encourage as much cognitive diversity in our collaborations, and there is always more than one way to solve a problem, which is why we work in a multidisciplinary way.   

We’d like to deliver true transformation which involves not just putting services online, but totally rethinking how those services are offered. It's always a cross-functional activity, involving teams from across the university as well as outside.   

Our mindset is about being adaptive, curious and always thinking about the person who is not represented ‘in the room’, the end-user.
Ayala Gordon
Associate Director Digital User Experience

Claire Furnish, Content Designer

We’ve developed a range of products covering education and research user groups. It’s satisfying to see how our work is helping people and streamlining their journeys. A personal highlight is being able to work closely with other disciplines. Working in a multidisciplinary team is a great learning experience.

I love being part of a like-minded, supportive group, helping our users find the information they need.
Claire Furnish
Content Designer

Piret Libene, User Experience Designer

UX design focuses on how users interact and engage with a product or service. The design of the users' experience is shared amongst all the disciplines in the Digital User Experience Team. Working collaboratively, we are able to ensure that our services meet users' needs and are accessible for everyone.

Our team's shared curiosity keeps us all open to new ideas and motivates us to keep learning about the world around us.
Piret Libene
User Experience Designer

Sara Branco Cunha, User Researcher

User research focuses on understanding users' needs, behaviours and motivations by investigating how users perform tasks and observe how they interact with a product. This can be achieved through the use of different methodologies such as conducting interviews and surveys.

The thing I most enjoy about being a User Researcher in the Digital User Experience team is the outstanding level of collaboration within our team, where everyone works harmoniously towards the same goal.

I feel listened to, inspired and supported to do my best.
Sara Branco Cunha
User Researcher

Mackenzie Cockram, Senior Performance Analyst

I am really lucky to be working in a talented and diverse multidisciplinary team in my performance role, where I get to support the team with data analysis and insights throughout the product lifecycle from discovery phase though to live product iteration all with a focus on meeting user needs.

The group that we’ve built at Southampton is hands down the most fun and talented team I have worked in and it’s a genuine pleasure to be a part of the DUX team.

Everyone has something unique and interesting to bring to the table and from my perspective as someone who enjoys having engaging conversations with colleagues, they help us to ask the “how” or “why” questions that can sometimes be missed.

Hands down the most fun and talented team I have worked in.
Mackenzie Cockram
Performance Analyst

Kath Sellwood, SEO Manager

I work within SEO with the Digital User Experience Team. It’s our role to focus on how search engines view us, rank our digital content and the value of the traffic that comes through. Search engine optimisation is extremely important to the University as around 70% of its traffic comes in via search engines.

By ensuring our content is relevant, up to date and well structured, we keep our digital environment competitive and ranking well!

Working here allows me to test and grow my knowledge. This environment enables and encourages development.
Kath Sellwood
SEO Manager

Chris Lockhart, Head of Product

Our team gets to work on a wide range of product areas and with several different audiences. We get the opportunity to innovate as well as ability to maintain and improve our University’s large existing digital presence.

What strikes me as remarkable about our team is how many people stay. This is true even through our intensive 3-year digital transformation programme, which we completed this year. I put this down to team culture, varied and interesting scope of projects, and University employee benefits including the number of annual leave days.

As a long standing member of the Digital User Experience Team, it’s exciting to see our team grow and the opportunities this brings. I look forward to meeting you if you choose to apply.

The main thing that makes my role so appealing is the inspiring teammates that I’m lucky enough to work with.
Chris Lockhart
Head of Product

Doug Poole, Head of Delivery

Delivery can be intense – there are deadlines to meet and new products to launch, but the payoffs are also very satisfying.

Building a good team dynamic, developing trust, and then observing team members working with each other, helping each other and achieving great things is undoubtedly the most rewarding part of managing delivery in the team.

It's a buzz to see the team make something that users really respond to positively.
Doug Poole
Head of Delivery
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