published on
May 3, 2023

A chat with Mark Johnes, Senior Product Designer

Ella Moody
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Life at Florence
A chat with Mark Johnes, Senior Product Designer

This week on Behind the Scenes we're talking to Mark, our Senior Product Designer.

Mark has been at Florence for four months, and so far he’s loving the autonomy he’s given in his role, as well as the team around him. Here’s what he had to say about his journey at Florence.

Who are you and what do you do at Florence? 

My name is Mark Johnes and I’m a senior product designer at Florence. I work across the different Florence apps helping with the design system, understanding the problems and trying to come up with new features.

What made you want to join Florence? 

I’ve always had an interest in healthcare, so I like the idea of doing something positive with tech and solving a real problem. 

I could see that Florence is doing that in terms of helping to solve the staffing crisis, and the strapline really caught my attention. 

I loved that we’re working to give everyone the care and dignity they deserve, so that was a big thing for me. 

What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given? 

I’ll give you two. 

As a designer - I met the VP of Monzo’s design team. I asked him, “What’s the most important thing you could learn as a designer?”. 

He said, “Just learn principles. Once you learn principles you can literally apply it to anything.” 

Over the years that has really helped me to spot problems and solve them. 

In life - maybe when you’re younger you’re told that you should have a life plan or a ten or five year plan.

One of the best pieces of advice I’ve been given is to be a bit like water and adapt to wherever you are given any situation because plans never happen the way you expect. 

The quote is something like, “You show God your plans and he laughs,” because you have no idea what’s going to happen!

So, always be flexible, that’s always helped me. 

Mark hard at work

What’s your favourite thing about working at Florence? 

I would say it’s the trust; you’re trusted to do your job well and you’re given a good amount of autonomy which means that you can be creative. It allows me to think of creative solutions. 

Also, the culture. I really enjoyed the three-day offsite we had in May '22. I think all the initiatives like that are really cool, and everyone’s really friendly! 

What’s the biggest challenge Florence is facing at the moment? 

For the product team, our biggest challenge at the minute is bringing together the three different offerings that we have into one solution.

For the company, it’s recruitment. It’s about getting the right people, we have a lot of roles available and we need to make sure they’re the right fit for the company. 

What’s a fun fact about you that might surprise us? 

I was an extra in a Netflix film called Last Christmas. I was just walking and shopping and pretending to buy stuff in west London. It was a good experience! 

What piece of advice would you give to someone thinking about joining Florence? 

We’re very fast moving so I would say get ready for a very exciting adventure! 

People are always happy to answer questions, so don’t be afraid to ask questions. 

Also, come up with new ideas and get involved with anything. I’ve found that it’s very easy to collaborate. 

Where do you see Florence in five years?

I see the product being international and people being able to use the app seamlessly. I think that we’ll definitely be the go-to tool if you want to get into social care work; especially with the education piece I definitely think that the more Florence Academy continues to grow, the more people will be coming in our direction. 

If you’d like to join Mark at Florence check out our job vacancies here.

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