‘A lot of what we get out of Kraken comes from that trust that we put in people’, Gilly explains. ‘The company culture has always been incredibly supportive of learning by failing. They put a lot of confidence and trust in us to run with our ideas.’
Gilly’s experience has allowed her to spearhead a tech internship for young women to help make the industry more diverse and accessible for all.
The aptly named Ada Lovelace Internship was launched in 2020, and was such a huge success that it will continue annually.
‘Tech is such a male-dominated field and as a woman I’ve seen and experienced a lot of prejudice and stereotypes’, said Ada Lovelace intern and computer science student Noshin. ‘This chance to work in tech with other women confirmed I do definitely want to work in this industry.’
Out of office
Not all energy jobs are office-based, either. Octopus installs smart hardware – from electric vehicle chargers to smart meters – through Octopus Energy Services.
Zoe was hired as a smart meter engineer and brought exceptional people skills through her background as a social worker. She now trains Octopus engineers with the energy company’s specific brand of customer-centric service – spreading the word about innovative green smart tariffs, sharing energy-saving advice and even supporting the local community during lockdown by delivering food and medication to sheltering people.
Octopus Energy does things differently, so when Zoisa got in touch with Greg to discuss his rapidly growing business, he offered her a position to set up Octopus Energy for Business on the spot.
Before joining Octopus, Zoisa had worked to create meaningful connections between massive wind and solar farms and the businesses they powered. Under Zoisa’s leadership, Octopus Energy for Business provides tariffs that offer SMEs 100% locally generated power, and tariffs specifically for vertical farms and powering public electric vehicle chargers. ‘If we want to truly globalise green energy, it can’t just involve the Top 250 companies’, Zoisa said.
The Manchester tech hub
Octopus has launched a smart tech hub in Manchester, creating countless new opportunities for innovation. It has acquired a super-smart local startup called Upside Energy to help the hub grow, and will also integrate Upside’s tech into Kraken.
Upside Energy’s intelligent software helps make energy devices like batteries, electric vehicles and heat pumps smarter, matching their consumption with greener and cheaper electricity.
Upside’s senior market analyst Charlotte has always been passionate about fighting the climate crisis and wanted to work for a company that truly made a difference. Charlotte models the revenue and carbon-saving potential of products like smart home batteries across different markets, which is just one of many fascinating jobs available to help the UK move towards a smarter, greener grid.
Switching to electric vehicles
The global electric vehicle (EV) boom is happening, and Octopus Electric Vehicles (OEV) makes it easier for people and businesses to switch to electric transport. You get a holistic experience; everything from a car lease to a great tariff is covered.
Director of operations Gurjeet left a career in principal investing to join Octopus’ crucial work accelerating the UK’s transition to net zero through EVs.
He acknowledges the OEV team’s remarkable success, growing from a tiny team setting up test-driving stands to a fully fledged, stand-alone operation.
‘More than anything’, Gurjeet says, ‘I’m so proud of the group of people we have assembled, who do phenomenal work and are all so passionate about our mission’.
The ‘new normal’ for work
Last year brought an unprecedented set of challenges, but when the world went into lockdown in March, Octopus Energy was uniquely placed to adjust to society’s new remote work lives.
For a long time Octopus has had a remote team suitable for flexible careers and a variety of lifestyles, access needs and locations. This digital operations team is flexible and customer-facing, working out-of-hours across digital platforms.
It employs a fast-growing group of skilled individuals working all around the UK and even a few internationally, from Canada to South Africa.
The team includes team leader Kerry, a mother of four boys who used to be a teacher and was looking for a flexible, fulfilling career to balance with family life.
In 2018, Kerry joined Octopus outside ‘normal’ working hours and progressed to creating and leading a 20-strong team that looks after customers on social media and fosters Octopus’ hyper-engaged digital community.
Samsam joined Octopus’ customer operations team in Leicester, but switched to working remotely as part of the DigiOps team so she could accommodate her Masters studies. She now works on Octopus’ Black Lives Matter Fund and writes for the Octopus blog; she also collaborated with My Green Pod to create this article!
Join the mission
What unites this big team of brilliant people, working across a wide variety of locations and departments, is a shared sense of purpose and responsibility. Thanks to their collective work, Octopus Energy is growing fast and working relentlessly to drive the global transition to a system powered by 100% green energy.
Just as the internet transformed our lives, so will the people-led, tech-powered green energy revolution – and history will mark this moment in time.
To make the vision a reality, Octopus Energy needs even more people who share the mission for a sustainable planet – this could be your chance to join the fight!
Click here to find jobs in this fast-growing business. Don’t see a role that suits? Email [email protected] and explain how you could help drive the mission.