Cormac Scanlan

Chief Technology Officer

Adaptation is the key to operational success: learn what you can from the experiences of others, but don't be afraid to discard conventional wisdom when it doesn't work well for you.

Who is Cormac Scanlan?

A true technophile at heart, Scanlan hails from a background in graphic and web design, with a big focus on user experience (UX) and search engine optimization (SEO). Outside of the day job, Scanlan an is an avid guitarist, bookworm, single malt scotch whisky drinker, and retro videogame enthusiast. A keen photographer, he also has a passion for urban decay photography, and is a geek for pretty much anything related to space or science.

Cormac Scanlan as CTO

As CTO of Fleximize, Scanlan is responsible for managing all aspects of technology, which most notably includes the design and development of both the front-end website and the supporting back-end systems.

Since joining Fleximize in March 2015, Scanlan has launched a number of major web projects, including a wide range of functional, aesthetic and UX improvements across all key business systems. Working closely with head of marketing Caz Blaxcell, the customer-facing website was completely redesigned, rebuilt, and relaunched in late 2015. This process included modernizing the business's launch platform to make the code and information architecture (IA) search-friendly, user-focused and scalable. The redesign also saw the business build upon the launch site's Flexiwiki pages, creating the current news, press and Knowledge Hub sections, and making great content the backbone of the website.

Since the relaunch of the front-end website, Scanlan has led a number of other web projects. These have included building out the technology underpinning the Flexipay card, streamlining and improving the lending process through iterative UX improvements and deeper third-party integrations, and building new data entry systems for both customers and staff.

Cormac Scanlan's quick-fire round

  1. What's your favourite food?
    Pizza
  2. One film you can watch again and again?
    Koyaanisqatsi
  3. Best band in the world?
    Tough one... Tool, Anathema or Pink Floyd.
  4. Can you share a culinary tip?
    Don't eat yellow snow.
  5. Favourite TV show?
    Twin Peaks or Deadwood
  6. Best app for business owners?
    Trello

What did Cormac Scanlan do before he joined Fleximize?

After graduating as one of the UK's very first digital media degree students, Scanlan joined early-stage travel startup gapyear.com straight out of university. Launched in 1998 the site was one of the world's first niche social networks, pre-dating the majority of the social media unicorns, such as Facebook, by five to ten years.

Scanlan spent five years working as head of design at gapyear.com, seeing the site through two major redesigns. The second, which was focused on UX, scalability and social functionality, won Website of the Year at the British Youth Travel Awards in 2007 and was runner-up in same category in the two subsequent years.

As head of design, he was prominently involved in the creation of the (now dissolved) Fair Trade Volunteering initiative, the launch of The Great Volunteer Project joint venture (now The Great Projects), and worked closely with staff at Advanced Payment Solutions (APS), Broadcastle Bank and Cashplus to bring the UK's first backpacker-focused prepaid MasterCard card to market.

In 2010, after Scanlan led the business's IT through due diligence, gapyear.com was purchased by Flight Centre. He was then promoted through a number of broader roles, including acting as a liaison between gapyear.com and Flight Centre shortly after the acquisition, and overseeing web development on a number of other Flight Centre websites, including Round the World Experts and Flight Centre UK itself.

While working for gapyear.com and Flight Centre, Scanlan also freelanced as a designer, SEO consultant and commercial photographer with numerous other businesses, including a long contract with audio test manufacturer Lindos Electronics, where he redesigned and restructured the website, doubled up as product photographer, and designed product fascias for the launch of the MiniSonic MS20.

In January 2013, Scanlan was appointed chief operations officer (COO) at gapyear.com, overseeing all website and business operations, including during a period of time in which the business had no appointed general manager.

During his time as COO, Scanlan oversaw the complete redesign and rebranding of gapyear.com and the creation of the business's first travel consultant arm, which now employs more than 30 staff. He also worked closely with managing editor Will Jones to produce the site's first piece of long-form creative content, A Brief Visual History of Travel, which received widespread critical acclaim.

In his final two years working at gapyear.com and Flight Centre, Scanlan led a UX and search-focused project that tripled gapyear.com's organic traffic and improved the volume of product enquiry by two orders of magnitude. He said farewell to gapyear.com in February 2015, before assuming his position as CTO of Fleximize.


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