Ash Guy

BIT, BCI (Communication Design) @ QUT 2004-2008

Melbourne / East Coast, Australia | Reach out on ash at ashguy.com | Visit my Linkedin

In search of interesting projects that leverage technology to tackle real world problems in novel ways.

I thrive at the intersection of Business, Technology & Human Experience.


I've spent the best part of the last 21 years crafting interesting and engaging technologies and the businesses and teams that create them across a vast array of industries and business disciplines. I've built development teams that worked together to solve real world problems in businesses from the smallest of the small to some of the largest enterprises in the world.

Roles I'm looking for include: CTO, VP Engineering, Technical Principal / Principal Engineer, Technical / Engineering Advisor.

DHL, Kansas City Southern, Pacific National, TasRail, Swissport / Aerocare, Origin Energy, WIN & Seven Networks, AUSTREX, Credit Union Australia, Esports, Media, Entertainment, Government, Agriculture, Education, Real Estate, Charity, Retail.

I’ve had the pleasure of working with Ash on many projects over the last few years, from small greenfields startups to large corporate clients. Though experience and intuition, Ash deeply understands what’s involved in creating a great product – and can balance it all for the best outcomes. He’ll quickly understand user / client / business needs, empower and motivate the teams he works with, all while delivering elegant solutions (through both design and code). I’ve thoroughly enjoyed working with Ash, and hope I get the opportunity to do so again in the future!
Hanna Burrows,
Senior Product Manager, Common Code

Skills ~ Business / Strategy

Business Strategy and Process are areas I find extremely rewarding and I have been fortunate in that they have often been key parts of my role. In my career I have: Built businesses, Hired and fired teams, Established rhythms and documented processes, Managed clients, Scoped & delivered projects, Presented on panels and at conferences, Sold and marketed products and effectively been involved in every level of the business stack. I've also worked in and around with a variety of business styles including Startups, Small Business and Large Enterprise.

When working in these areas my logical / algorithmic skillset gives me a unique edge allowing me to remain calm and clear headed while grasping the complex relationships within a system or situation. This approach consistently achieves beneficial outcomes for all stakeholders, even in stressful or heated environments.

I have also done a reasonable amount of public speaking and education work and am interested in continuing to explore opportunities to get in front of people and share my expertise with the wider community.

Vision & Business Strategy, Marketing & Sales, Presentation & Public Speaking, Team Building, Project Scoping, Requirements Gathering & Analysis, Agile, Customer Feedback, Project Management, Establishment of Team and Business Process, Hiring Well, R&D Grants. JIRA & Atlassian Product Suite, Zendesk, Xero, Quickbooks, FrontApp, Matching Software to Business Needs.

Skills ~ Technical & Software Dev

Technology has always been at the centre of my roles and due to the variety of projects I've been a part of I have ended up working with an incredibly diverse range of tech stacks. So much so that it's hard to provide an exhaustive list of every single permutation of language, library and platform I have delivered projects in or on.

With such vast variations, I've found laundry lists of languages, libraries and platforms to be almost irrelevant. Instead I think a robust knowledge of common practices, patterns and algorithms and a capacity to quickly learn new tech far more important when starting a role. As well as this I always look for people who have a proven experience delivering projects from start to finish. I have built systems for driving complex mathematical and compute intensive engines, platforms to support the live streaming of data to tens of thousands of simultaneous connections, and workflow tools that support all kinds of roles and niches including US/Mexico rail border operations and international air freight booking to name a few. I've also been responsible for thousands of websites and hundreds of web applications over the years and couldn't be more confident with developing and delivering successful software projects.

My key technical interest at the moment is playing with the Rust Language in various contexts (CLI, Server, Browser, Device) and testing it with various programming patterns to understand what it is capable of.

Cloud (Google, AWS), Lambdas (Google, AWS, Now), Server (Linux / Bin / Bash), System (Rust, Java, Python), Web (Javascript, PHP), Client (HTML, CSS, SASS), Frameworks (React, Angular), Mobile (iOS Objective C, Reat Native, Ionic), Database (Postgres, Mysql, Firebase, Mongo, Redis, Kafka), DNS, Integrations (OAuth, REST, GraphQL, Stripe, Mailers, Hundreds More...), Blockchain (Ethereum), Devices (Raspberry PI), SEO.

Skills ~ Customer Experience

In addition to my Technical and Strategic skills, I have an extensive creative background and rich skillset that I leverage on a day to day basis. My primary creative activity is in the User Experience space, creating technology that is immersive, fun and easy to use. I'm particularly interested taking psychological principles like immersion and gamification (typically from the games industry) and applying them in novel ways to tools and tech that would otherwise be "boring" parts of a users workflow. This creates an opportunity to not only increase the speed or quality of outcomes, but also positively affect the users mental modal of the problem as well as the day to day life of the users themselves, providing broad benefits that extend far beyond the tools themselves.

Beyond UX I also have significant experience in brand building (colours, logos and typography etc), the generation of sales and marketing collateral and general print design. This leaves me with an exceptional grasp of the creative processes and the capacity to work on creative tasks or with creative roles in a team.

Sketch, Adobe (Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Premier), Framer, Photography, Graphite, Paint (Oil, Acrylic & Watercolor) & Paper, Wood, Clay. User Experience, Immersion & Engaging Design, Interaction Design, Design Systems, Branding, Print, Web & Graphic Design.


My key drive is to leverage technology to solve interesting problems in ways that are engaging and effortless for whoever comes into contact with it. This often means harnessing the most bleeding edge tech available in complex, novel and elegant ways and building skilled multidisciplinary teams with robust and adaptable skillsets who can think and operate creatively.

Creative Problem Solving, Disruptive or World Changing Concepts, Optimisation, a Systems Approach to Understanding the world, Positive Impact, Progress, Rapid Iteration & Impact, Optimistic Outlooks, Sharing Knowledge, Entertainment / Gaming / Pop Culture (Read: Geeky stuff).

Work & Projects ~ Common Code

Technical Principal / CTOaaS

Common Code is a digital agency specialising in tech-for-good and positive impact projects, startups and emerging technologies. In mid-2019 the team reached out to me to work with them in creating a new technical leadership role (principal).

Since working with Common Code I have been involved in managing and supporting small teams across a myriad of projects in retail, iot and tech-for-good spaces as well as evolving the business strategy itself. I've also had the opportunity to bring a lot of my own technological experience / choices into the business and assist in expanding the general skill base of the broader team.

The majority of my time is spent in strategic, architectural and mentoring type activities rather than being "on the tools", though I do occasionally step in to do this type of work where necessary. I have also had the opportunity to spend a portion of my time workin on a range of education initiatives in the pacific around using technology to create economic and social benefits for developing comunities.

See more at https://commoncode.io.

Strategy, Technical Architecture, Team Building, Process, Education, Python, IoT, Javascript / Typescript, AWS, Ecommerce, GraphQL, Corporate Systems & Integrations.

Work & Projects ~ Elements

Technical Founder

Elements is a long running work-in-progress side-project of mine aimed squarely at helping more early stage businesses succeed by dramatically increasing the availability of great quality business advice at a very low price point (inspired by my own frustrations post running my own businesses).

It does this by providing Accountants and Bookkeepers with an easy to understand workflow that focuses on improving key areas early stage businesses make mistakes while drastically reducing the overheads for the advisor allowing them to provide more businesses with better advice at the before it's too late.

From a technical standpoint the app is built to be as simple, reliable and hands off as possible (being a side project it needs to be stable enough that it doesn't take any time out of my day to day). To this end it's written as an all-inclusive (Site and App) traditional Web App in Rust (Rocket & Diesel), with vanilla ES6 interactive components-- meaning its outlandishly fast to load and run.

See more at https://elements.app.

Heroku, Rust, Diesel, Rocket, Cloudflare, Postgres, SQL, Stripe, Xero, Quickbooks, MYOB Accountright. Design, Development, Operations, Brand, Writing & Content, Business Process, Marketing & Advertising, SEO.

Work & Projects ~ Skrilla (Now Picklebet)

VP Engineering / Head of User Tech

Skrilla is a Live Esports Daily Fantasy and Wagering platform headquartered out of Brisbane, Australia. It was started in 2017 with an eye to taking advantage of the explosive growth in the Esports space (which was later proved out to be an even bigger opportunity that we thought).

The Skrilla app itself is a live streaming entertainment platform that must be able to support hundreds of thousands of simultaneous users with a combination of viewing, stats, betting and fantasy contests, and utilises the Ethereum blockchain in the background to provide a common chip on the platform that can be use to enter contests and place bets internationally.

I joined the team as they were pivoting from a previous product and was responsible from square one for Building the Team, Development Process and Rhythms, all of the Client / Frontend Application Development as well as partaking in overall Business Process, Brand & Marketing, Partnerships and broader Systems Architecture decision making.

See more at https://picklebet.com.

AWS, Java, Postgres, Javascript (React, Raw ES6, Gatsby), SCSS, Firebase, Kafka, Docker, Bitbucket (& Pipelines for CI), Bin, Firebase, Sparkpost, Ethereum. Agile, Business Strategy, Systems Architecture, Development Process, Team Building, Brand & Marketing, Partnerships, VC.

Work & Projects ~ Biarri Finance, Biarri Rail & Biarri Optimisation

Project Lead / Senior Developer

Biarri is an Australian consulting and software business that uses complex mathematics to solve massive scale optimisation problems for enterprises around the world.

Over my years at Biarri I was involved in the specification and delivery of a multitude of projects for major clients in Rail, Oil & Gas, Health, Aviation, Government and more. My key role in the business was to take take the the complex engines that the expert mathematical team was building, and craft them into platforms that the often non-technical users could easily understand, adopt and enjoy using on a day to day basis (often replacing or fitting into large ingrained workflows that had been established over years of manual process). I was also a major player in installing the Business and Development processes required to grow an organisation that creates these kinds of technologies in a repeatable and predictable manner.

During this time I was fortunate enough to work directly with a range of customers in North America and Europe as well as around Australia which helped refine my appreciation of the user, and further drove my interest in building engaging experiences that could not only help these people do their jobs faster, but make them more enjoyable along the way.

See more at https://biarri.com.

See more at https://biarrirail.com.

AWS, Python, Postgres, Javascript (Angular, Raw ES6), SCSS, Docker, Bitbucket, Jenkins, Bin. Agile, Team Management, Requirements Analysis, Systems Architecture, Client Management, Big Data, Analytics & Visualisation, Development Process, Team Building, UX Patterns, Startups, Enterprise, Government, Health, Aviation, Oil & Gas, Supply Chain, Agribusiness.

Work & Projects ~ Griffity University / QCA

Course Designer / Sessional Instructor

In 2012 Griffith was looking to revitalise its Interactive Media course and asked me if I wanted to participate in building out a curriculum that would leave their students work-ready and able to cope with the complex changing digital environment that we find ourselves in today.

Given my experience building a team of designers and developer I had a lot of thought about what I wanted to see in my own team, and spent a lot of time building these focuses into the course structure so as to produce graduates who I myself would be happy hiring.

The resulting course continues to be run today (evolved year over year from when I first designed it) and has turned out hundreds of confident and employable interactive media students over the years.

HTML, CSS, Javascript, Design, Git. Education, Public Speaking, Hiring Right.

Work & Projects ~ Decomplexity

CEO / Platform Architect

Out of University I founded a business dedicated to exploiting the network I had made through several years of consulting in order to build applications that very specifically focused on a high level of usability & immersion in spaces where there were massive skill gaps in taking up new technology.

We had two major products at Decom-- Quetools (our integrated marketing suite made up of a custom Content Management System, Custom Email Marketing Tool, Customer Database, Event Calendar Etc), and CattleMarket (Our award winning cattle classifieds system on top of which we upsold integrations into Quetools) as well as a full service Web-outsourcing business that we provided for Quetools Agencies (for a time providing the design and development services for every single notable media agency across Central Queensland).

On top of this we also took on smaller projects including building a recycling auditing database / tooling for CQ local councils, statewide surveys for major media regional media companies, and a myriad of different tools for the Agriculture and Cattle space.

PHP, Python, MySQL, Linux, Bin, Server Management, AWS, Rackspace. Small Business, Business Lifecycle, Business Strategy, Agribusiness, Media, Team Building, Hiring Right, Partnerships & Agencies, Government Contracts, Marketing & Sales, SEO.


I'm currently in search of projects and teams in exciting areas where my broad skillset could help get a product or project to market faster, more reliably, and with greater impact. To that end I'm happy to consider both short contracts as well as full time positions for the right project. Of particular interest are projects headquartered in Melbourne, Australia but I'm also happy to travel if need be. Referees and testimonials are available for much of the work listed on this page.

At the same I remain keen to share my knowledge through increased public speaking and wider community education activities so any opportunity to do this is fantastic as well.

If you're part of, or know of a project that might suit I'd be excited to hear about it. Reach out using the form below and we'll book a time to have a chat.

Shoot me a message at ash at ashguy.com to start a conversation.