Curriculum Vitae (CV)


Matthew Poulter

Matthew Poulter

Engineering Manager at VCSW

13 years web development

7 years marketing & design

4 years management

Personal information

Full name
Matthew David Poulter
Date of birth
28 Feb 1996 (age 27)
South African
Current location
Valkenburg, Netherlands
EU work permit
Highly skilled migrant visa
English, Afrikaans, Dutch (basic)


  • VCSW

    Engineering Manager


    May 2023 – present

    I was recently appointed Engineering Manager at VCSW, a role that has granted me a more extensive set of responsibilities and a pivotal position within the organization. Taking over the management of the development teams from the departing Director of Operations, I have been entrusted with the task of guiding and empowering our talented developers towards achieving our collective goals. This transition will allow me to further enhance my leadership skills and foster a culture of collaboration and innovation within the teams.

    In addition to leading the development teams, I have also become a member of the company's Management Team, enabling me to contribute strategic input and insights. This newfound involvement in the decision-making process will allow me to align our technological initiatives with the broader organizational strategy, ensuring that our efforts contribute directly to the company's overall success.

  • Simple Squid

    Freelance Web Developer and Editor

    Simple Squid

    Jan 2010 – present

    As the founder of Simple Squid in 2010, I established the business to support my freelance web development work. Over the years, I have had the pleasure of developing websites and web applications for a diverse range of clients, from individuals to small and medium businesses.

    In addition to web development, I have extended my freelancing services to include graphic design, video editing, and other creative endeavours. As a result, I bring a multidisciplinary approach to my work, enabling me to provide comprehensive solutions that meet my clients' needs.

    I have also been an active member of the open-source community, contributing to various PHP packages and even maintaining a few myself. My involvement in this community has enabled me to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and best practices in web development, which I bring to every project I undertake.

    Overall, I am proud of the success I have achieved through Simple Squid and am passionate about continuing to provide quality web development and design services.

  • VCSW

    Lead Developer


    Jan 2023 – Apr 2023

    As Lead Developer at VCSW, I excelled in managing and developing our software products while ensuring the optimal performance of our two development teams. A key aspect of my role was orchestrating work preparation and preliminary research, enabling the teams to operate at their best. By providing strong leadership and guidance, I fostered a collaborative and productive work environment that empowered team members to deliver their highest-quality work.

    I actively contributed to roadmap discussions, leveraging my expertise to shape strategic decisions and drive the future direction of our products. Alongside my technical responsibilities, I took pride in coaching and mentoring fellow developers, conducting regular one-on-one sessions to support their technical growth. Moreover, I placed great importance on maintaining accurate and up-to-date documentation for both internal and external stakeholders.

    After only four months as Lead Developer, I was promoted to Engineering Manager in recognition of my capabilities and contributions. This new role saw me take over the management of the development teams from the departing Director of Operations, and it reflected the organization's trust and confidence in my leadership.

    During my time as Lead Developer, I demonstrated my dedication to driving excellence, fostering collaboration, and delivering impactful results. By combining my technical expertise, leadership skills, and a strong focus on mentorship and documentation, I contributed to the overall success of VCSW and the growth of our development teams.

  • VCSW

    Senior Developer


    Sep 2021 – Dec 2022

    My journey at VCSW began when I joined as a Senior Developer in September 2021, initially working remotely from South Africa. VCSW is a financial services company specialising in social security based in the Netherlands. In December 2021, I made the exciting decision to relocate to the Netherlands, allowing me to transition to a hybrid work model.

    During my time at as Senior Developer, I worked on both the Datahub and VCSW Digitaal teams. I played a key role in spearheading the development of the Datahub, an innovative API designed to standardize payroll administration data, enabling automation of a variety of tasks for our partners. Additionally, I made valuable contributions to the enhancement of our flagship SaaS application as part of the VCSW Digitaal team.

    My responsibilities extended to server management, successfully upgrading and migrating outdated servers to ensure optimal performance and reliability for our systems. Furthermore, I actively participated in technical interviews, leveraging my expertise to identify top talent for our teams. I also had the privilege of delivering internal talks on new technologies and packages, sharing my knowledge and insights with my colleagues.

    In recognition of my achievements and leadership abilities, I was promoted to Lead Developer at the start of 2023. Overall, my time as a Senior Developer was characterized by my ability to work closely with stakeholders, deliver high-impact features, provide constructive feedback, and actively contribute to the growth and success of the organization.

  • Kiddiwinks

    Development and Marketing Manager


    Jan 2018 – Aug 2021

    As a member of the founding family of Kiddiwinks, I have been intimately involved in the growth and success of the business from an early age. After serving as a part-time consultant, I transitioned into a full-time management role, where I was critical in enhancing the customer experience and driving business growth.

    As part of my responsibilities, I managed the design and development of the Kiddiwinks digital infrastructure, including the website used by both customers and staff. I successfully upgraded and migrated several legacy systems while introducing a customer loyalty program that has since seen significant success.

    In addition, I was responsible for heading up the marketing efforts, both digital and physical, which included creating campaign plans, developing the weekly newsletters, and crafting social media content. I was also involved in shop floor planning, general staff management, and financial record-keeping, and would occasionally step in as a sales assistant when required.

    Thanks to combined efforts, Kiddiwinks has enjoyed robust growth, achieving a 25% increase in consumer sales from 2019 to 2020, despite challenging economic conditions. As a result of my contributions and improvements to the digital infrastructure, I was able to leave Kiddiwinks in a strong and self-sustaining position, poised for continued success in the future.

  • Forres Preparatory School

    Robotics Teacher

    Forres Preparatory School

    Feb 2016 – Mar 2020

    My extended involvement with the FIRST LEGO League robotics competition led to my appointment as the LEGO robotics teacher and coach at Forres Preparatory School, a role I was very passionate about. I designed and delivered engaging lessons on two or three afternoons every week, aimed at children aged 9 to 13 years. My teaching was focused on the basics of coding and engineering by building and programming LEGO robots.

    My efforts culminated in the successful preparation of three Forres teams for the regional FIRST LEGO League competition each year, which involved designing and building LEGO robots to solve real-world problems. I was proud to guide one of the school teams to participate in the national competition in Johannesburg twice.

    My time at Forres was fulfilling and exciting and enabled me to impart valuable knowledge to the kids while igniting their passion for STEM subjects.

  • Kiddiwinks

    Development and Marketing Consultant


    Jan 2015 – Dec 2017

    My official involvement with Kiddiwinks started in 2015 as I began consulting part-time with the day-to-day operations of the business. My responsibilities included assisting with the development of existing systems and helping to create marketing plans, newsletters, and social media content.

    In addition, I played a key role in inventory management, taught robotics classes, organized LEGO children's parties, and helped plan and launch a new Kiddiwinks shop in 2017. Through my efforts, I helped to enhance the overall customer experience and increase brand awareness.

  • Rondebosch Boys’ High School

    Research Assistant

    Rondebosch Boys’ High School

    Jan 2015 – Jun 2015

    At Rondebosch, I played an instrumental role in improving the school's use of technology to support teaching and learning. One of my major achievements was setting up the school's first virtual learning environment, which allowed students to access educational resources online. Additionally, I initiated a teacher peer-review system, where lessons were recorded and reviewed by other teachers to identify areas for improvement.

    Thanks to these initiatives, teachers were able to provide more personalised support to students, and students had greater access to educational resources. Overall, I am proud of the positive impact my work had on the school community.

Key skills

Teamwork and team leadership

My effective teamwork and leadership abilities are demonstrated by my ability to work collaboratively with diverse teams, successfully communicate with stakeholders at all levels, and manage projects effectively. My commitment to open communication enables me to cultivate positive and productive relationships with team members, customers, employees, and managers alike.

I attribute these abilities most to the following skills:
  • Good communication (verbal and non-verbal)
  • Vision, ideation, and creativity
  • Helpfulness and commitment
  • Willingness to learn
  • Empathy and respect
  • Adaptability and flexibility

Full stack web development

My primary development stack is comprised of Laravel, Vue.js, Inertia.js, and Tailwind CSS (or VILT for short). I enjoy using this stack for its efficiency and ease of use in developing complex web applications. Additionally, I am always seeking to expand my knowledge and stay up-to-date with the latest technologies in the field.

I am proficient and experienced with the following programming languages and frameworks (amongst others):
  • PHP
  • Laravel
  • HTML and CSS
  • Tailwind CSS
  • MySQL and PostgreSQL
  • Nginx and Apache
  • JavaScript
  • Vue.js
  • React
  • Inertia.js
  • Livewire and Alpine.js
  • Statamic and Filament
Additionally, I make regular use of these development tools and services:
  • Git and GitHub (version control)
  • Laravel Forge and Vapor (deployment)
  • AWS and Digital Ocean (hosting)
  • Docker (development)
  • JetBrains PhpStorm (IDE)
  • Pest and Cypress (testing)
  • Tinkerwell and Ray (debugging)
  • Figma (design)

Marketing, design, and content creation

With several years of experience in planning and executing marketing campaigns, crafting newsletters and social media copy, and creating graphics for both digital and print media, I am skilled in marketing, design, and content creation. Additionally, I am an experienced videographer and editor.

Some of the programs and tools I am proficient and comfortable with include:
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Mailchimp
  • Facebook Business and Ads Managers
  • Google Business Profile
  • YouTube Studio
  • Adobe Premiere Pro and After Effects
  • DaVinci Resolve
  • Adobe Audition
  • Ableton Live
  • OBS Studio


  • University of Cape Town

    Bachelor of Science Honours specialising in Computer Science

    University of Cape Town

    2019 – 2020

    I completed my Bachelor of Science Honours degree specialising in Computer Science in mid-2020, although my graduation was postponed to July 2021.

    I found this to be the hardest year of my studies due to several personal reasons as well as my becoming more actively involved at Kiddiwinks. In fact, I failed one of my final courses in 2019 and had to learn the hard lessons of resilience and perseverance as I took another course the following year to complete my degree.

    My course results were:

    Course Mark
    Honours Research Project 75
    Research & Innovation 79
    Functional Programming 80
    Compilers 1 76
    Compilers 2 87
    Big Data 80
    Network Security 79
    High-Performance Computing 70
    Mathematics: Cryptography F
    Human Computer Interaction 83
  • Allan Gray Orbis Foundation

    Fellowship Programme

    Allan Gray Orbis Foundation

    2017 – 2019

    I was selected to join the Allan Gray Orbis Foundation's Fellowship Programme in 2017. In addition to funding three years of my university fees, this was an exciting and eye-opening experience for me as I was mentored and guided towards life as a high-impact, responsible entrepreneur.

    I attended many entrepreneurship workshops, master classes, mentorship sessions, and festivals organised by the Foundation. I have since graduated from the Fellowship Programme and am now an Allan Gray Fellow.

  • University of Cape Town

    Bachelor of Commerce specialising in Information Systems & Computer Science

    University of Cape Town

    2016 – 2018

    I graduated with my Bachelor of Commerce degree specialising in Information Systems & Computer Science in April 2019. I enjoyed my time studying, and, as a result, found myself picking up several extra courses along the way.

    Skills wise, I learned how to work under pressure, I gained a strong understanding of business, and I improved my verbal and written communication skills.

    I was grateful to be placed on the Dean’s Merit List as well as being awarded a Commerce Faculty Scholarship.

    My course results were:

    First year:

    Course Mark
    Financial Accounting 86
    Financial Reporting I 83
    Evidence-based Management 70
    Computer Science 1015 95
    Computer Science 1016 88
    Microeconomics 81
    Macroeconomics 57
    Mathematics 1010 98
    Mathematics 1012 95
    Introductory Statistics 94

    Second year:

    Course Mark
    Management Accounting I 66
    Business Law I 55
    Computer Science 2001 80
    Computer Science 2002 66
    Systems Analysis 61
    Systems Design & Development 69
    Mathematics 2000 52
    Business Ethics 57

    Third year:

    Course Mark
    Professional Communication 78
    Computer Science 3002 67
    Computer Science 3003 67
    I.T. Project Management 68
    BPM & Enterprise Systems 57
    Electronic Commerce 67
  • Rondebosch Boys’ High School

    National Senior Certificate

    Rondebosch Boys’ High School

    2010 – 2014

    During my time at Rondebosch, I was amongst the top academics as well as being heavily involved in music and community service.

    I held many positions of leadership, including being a school prefect, a member of the Representative Council of Learners, and the leader of several of the school’s music ensembles and bands.

    Skills that I acquired at school were time management, creative leadership, and compassion.

    I was grateful to attain the following achievements and awards whilst at school:

    • 3rd in the Western Cape for Information Technology in Matric (2014)

    • The Mike Reeler “Altius et Latius” Award for allroundership (2014)

    • Distinction Awards for Academics, Music, and Service (2013, 2014)

    • The GH Broster Trophy for outstanding service (2013)

    • Subject prizes in Mathematics, AP Mathematics, and Information Technology (2013, 2014)

    • Selected for the Standard Bank National Schools’ Big Band (2011, 2013, 2014)

    • Finalist (top 17) in the South African Programming Olympiad (2014)

    • Gold certificate (top 10) in the UCT Mathematics Competition (2012, 2013)

    • 2nd Place in the FIRST LEGO League South African National Championships (2010, 2012)

    My final National Senior Certificate results were:

    Course Mark
    English Home Language 88
    Afrikaans First Additional Language 76
    Mathematics 98
    Advanced Programme Mathematics 91
    Physical Sciences 90
    Information Technology 96
    Music 83
    Life Orientation 91


  • 280k+ open-source package downloads

    My open-source packages have been downloaded more than 250k times, demonstrating the popularity and usefulness of my contributions to the developer community.

  • 25% annual consumer sales growth

    Through my marketing and customer service initiatives, we achieved a 25% increase in consumer sales at Kiddiwinks in 2020, driving significant revenue growth for the company.

  • Virtual recordings aired on national radio

    Several virtual choir recordings that I edited were aired on Fine Music Radio, South Africa in 2020.

  • Exponential Black Friday growth at Kiddiwinks

    As project manager for Kiddiwinks' biggest sales day of the year, I oversaw an exponential growth in Black Friday sales from 2017 to 2021, driving significant revenue and profitability for the company.

  • Introduction of a customer loyalty programme

    Through my successful implementation of an omni-channel customer loyalty programme at Kiddiwinks, I helped significantly increase customer engagement and retention.

  • Migrated legacy point-of-sale system

    During my time at Kiddiwinks, I facilitated the migration of 4 shops to Vend POS systems, allowing for real-time stock management across the company.

  • Coached and chaperoned teams to FLL Nationals

    I coached and chaperoned teams of kids aged 9-16 to the FIRST LEGO League Nationals every year from 2015 to 2020, fostering a love of STEM education and robotics.

View all

Interesting (and fun) facts about me

  • I am a parkrun enthusiast (and tourist), and I’m part of the Tapjin parkrun core volunteering team.

  • I’m an avid fan of Doctor Who, the Lord of the Rings, and the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

  • I love to listen to podcasts on my commutes.

  • I play the trombone and used to sing in two Cape Town choirs.


Please feel free to request contact details for any of my references.

  • Owner of Kiddiwinks

    Bryony Poulter

    Owner of Kiddiwinks

  • Founder of Vidhya Productions

    Lilavan Gangen

    Founder of Vidhya Productions

  • Teacher at Rondebosch Boys' High School

    Tracy Starke

    Teacher at Rondebosch Boys' High School

  • Choirmaster of True Voices, Cape Town

    Patrick Cordery

    Choirmaster of True Voices, Cape Town

Contact me

I'm always excited to hear about new projects and ideas, so feel free to get in touch!

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