Christopher Riley, Developer in York, United Kingdom
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Christopher Riley

Verified Expert  in Engineering

Laminas Developer

York, United Kingdom
Toptal Member Since
June 9, 2020

Christopher has been a contractor for six years and has worked with medium and large-scale companies and government projects. His main focus is PHP and software architecture, but this often spills over into creating improvements throughout the delivery pipeline. Chris also speaks fairly regularly at PHP conferences on security and architecture topics as well as delivering training courses both at these events and to private clients.



Preferred Environment

GitLab, GitHub, IRC, Slack, JetBrains, PhpStorm, Docker, Linux

The most amazing...

...project I've turned around had a bad review from an outside QA consultant. After leading a 10-week refactoring project, it passed with an exceptional rating.

Work Experience

Lead Software Engineer (Contract)

2019 - 2020
  • Delivered a digital transformation project for a UK high street name.
  • Designed and delivered a new Symfony-based API layer to power an AngularJS front end moving away from a legacy Drupal 7 system.
  • Led the team to deliver a valuable improvement for the business with a challenging deadline in the face of the Coronavirus pandemic.
Technologies: Symfony, Drupal, PHP

Senior Software Engineer (Contract)

2016 - 2019
Office of the Public Guardian
  • Delivered the MVP for an extension to their existing case management system.
  • Provided incremental improvements to the software architecture.
  • Completed two data migration projects bringing data in from legacy systems.
Technologies: Doctrine 2, Zend Framework, PHP

Senior Software Engineer (Contract)

2016 - 2016
  • Documented development environment set up and streamlined its set up.
  • Worked on decoupling business logic from the Laravel framework code.
  • Tracked down a tricky race condition between two microservices and designed the solution.
Technologies: Microservices, Laravel, PHP

Technical Architect

2015 - 2016
Wren Kitchens
  • Oversaw architecture requirements for several streams of new work.
  • Planned a successful update to the latest PHP version and core software dependencies.
  • Solved database configuration issue that improved query performance by 75% across several areas of the admin tool.
  • Mentored and trained their in-house team in good object-oriented design practices.
Technologies: Symfony, PHP

Software Engineer/Technical Architect

2014 - 2015
  • Built an API and front-end layer for a brand new vehicle operator licensing system.
  • Delivered a significant refactoring project to improve code quality and move business logic into a proper domain model.
  • Established a code review process to ensure that all code met a minimum standard and complied with good practices established in the project.
Technologies: Doctrine, Zend Framework, PHP


Stamphpede is a soon-to-be-released OSS tool written in PHP for creating load testing scenarios. It has been designed with developer experience in mind and a focus on giving developers a simple but powerful API to define their tests using a combination of code and annotations. It uses the Async IO library, React, and PHP in order to be able to make the large number of requests required by a load test.


PHP, SQL, JavaScript


Zend Framework, Symfony, PHPUnit, Laravel


Git, PhpStorm, JetBrains, Slack, GitHub, GitLab


Software Architecture, Laminas, APIs, IRC


REST APIs, Doctrine 2, Doctrine


Docker, Google Cloud Platform (GCP), Kubernetes, Linux, Drupal, Amazon Web Services (AWS)

Industry Expertise



MySQL, PostgreSQL



2005 - 2010

Master of Engineering Degree in Computer Science

University of York - York, UK