Learn about the Blackmill Leadership Hub

What we do

We work with startups and established technology organisations to deliver cultural outcomes that drive business results.

We do that by teaching, growing teams, and leading by example in product development.



We offer culture workshops on leading engineering teams, engineering better hiring practices, and Inclusive and resilient leadership for diverse teams. We also offer technical workshops on topics such as advanced Git, advanced Ruby and Rails, Refactoring, and Test Driven Development with RSpec. To learn more, visit our workshops section.

Elle and Lachlan have a knack for creating a safe learning environment and helping participants of all levels get involved. I left their workshop inspired, with a few new tools under my belt and the confidence to put them in practice.

They know the web community inside-out so speakers they bring in are top notch. Would highly recommend them to any development team looking to level up.

Steve Gilles , Founder at Lookahead

Growing Teams

Coaching engineering leads

We coach tech leads in effective management practices, and we improve overall engineering processes. We partner with you to develop and maintain a lasting culture of learning that can attract great candidates, engage and motivate your team, deliver better results in less time, and increase the team's retention rate. To learn more, visit tech leadership coaching page.

Associate developer onboarding program

Many companies employ a sink or swim approach to educating less experienced employees, relying on on-the-job learning. This leaves critical gaps in knowledge. Business As Usual (BAU) assignments are vital for your product(s) but do not reliably offer opportunities to pick up new skills, or to keep up with the changing nature of our industry. Alternatively, we can help you onboard new developers, while providing them with the support they need. It diversifies your team and improves retention. The structure shapes your development team environment to be more supportive for new developers, mitigates the costs of integrating them, and lets everyone do better work, write better code, and create better products. To learn more, visit Associate Developer onboarding program.

Elle joined Qantas Hotels to help us establish what is becoming a very successful Engineering Academy. The process of assessing needs then designing and delivering the programme was incredibly thorough; from the interview process to the thoughtful curriculum which is tailored for Qantas Hotels and is full of sound engineering principles and practices.

As well as excellent attention to detail, quality of work and communication, the most surprising thing about working with Elle and Blackmill are the benefits you get in addition to the stated project or programme. In our case this was a modelled interview process designed to be inclusive and objective but also efficient.

I highly recommend working with Elle and Blackmill and would be happy to expand on this recommendation in person.

Stu Liston , Head of Engineering at Qantas Hotels

Implement objectives and key results

We guide organisation-wide implementation of OKRs. In consultation with executives and every layer of the organisation, Blackmill can assist your implementation and roll-out of OKRs by guiding structure and reporting, and by coaching staff on how to write good OKRs for their team and themselves.

Lachlan's contribution to the Engineering and Design team at Data61 has been extremely well received. He came on as a maternity leave backfill for our FED team leader, working on project delivery as well as coaching the team resulting in two successful promotions.

On the back of this, as well as his broad and highly professional (and great positive attitude) we engaged him further to provide production operations coaching to various early stage technology project teams needing advice on technology stack, team culture and production goals as well as Data61 Executive Team coaching for the organisational implementation of Objectives and Key Results.

I look forward to working with him again.

Hilary Cinis , Director, Engineering and Design at Data61

Leading by example

Product development

We work directly with your engineering and product teams to deliver to your roadmap. We serve as role models and mentors while delivering features and improving code maintainability.

Lachlan and the Blackmill team have been an important resource for us, helping us launch a number of key projects, such as our plugin directory and careers site. They’ve let our product team stay focused on their existing projects, fit in with our existing dev tools and processes, and their management experience means they’ve been proactive, self-managing and extremely communicative. Would recommend them to any team in a heartbeat.

Tim Lucas , Founder & CPO at Buildkite

Codebase reviews

As Rails applications grow over time to provide more features, they often also grow in complexity. Even with the best intentions for high standards and code quality applications evolve and may face challenges around timely delivery, reduced velocity, development processes, and performance. Most applications accumulate technical debt over time

We analyse and review your codebase to help you understand its current state, scope of technical debt, and any potential process bottlenecks. We look for code architecture design flaws, test coverage, code churn and complexity, potential vulnerabilities, god objects that should be broken down into smaller objects, and other Rails anti-patterns.

Learn more about our codebase reviews

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Talk to us, we're listening

Would you like to improve team effectiveness and productivity? Got a project you think we can help with? Interested in leadership coaching or engineering training? Basically, want to work with us? Get in touch: gday@blackmill.co and we will be in touch in a jiffy.

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We are grateful we share this land today. We hold sorrow for the costs of that sharing, and we hope for a reconciliation to bring us to a state of equity, justice, and partnership together.