We caught up with Max Montgelas, VP of Engineering at Renoviso. Over the last year and a half he has lead the engineering team for the most disruptive company in home renovation. Renoviso is completely transforming how consumers complete home renovation projects. They solved a glaring problem most homeowners know too well: completing a home improvement project can be a painful and confusing process.
Read on to learn more about the interesting projects their team is up to and how they're giving the home reno world a face-lift.
Renoviso is hiring! Check out its BIZZpage
Jill Gregoriou: Hiring the right talent is important to a thriving culture. You’re bringing nearly 15 years of software engineering to Renoviso. How do you view Renoviso’s culture and what qualities do you look for in potential candidates to join your team?
Max Montegelas: Renoviso is a company that’s loaded with talented and passionate people in all areas of our business. Our team is our biggest asset and I think this resonates throughout the hardworking, collaborative culture that we’ve built. For an early-stage startup like us, this next set of hires is our opportunity to crystallize this culture, and for that reason I look for candidates who express these same qualities.
JG: What are the team’s core values?
MM: We’re trying to change the (traditionally painful) experience of improving your home. Our core value is to provide the customer with an easy and pleasant experience that leverages technology throughout the process, and we want that to become the new normal in the industry. This means that all aspects of the business (engineering, product/design, marketing, and operations) have to excel. For the engineering team, this means writing clean, functional code that’s bug free!
JG: Renoviso’s engineers are building technology for the most disruptive company in home renovation. What are some of the cool projects they are working on?
MM: People often underestimate what’s under the hood here at Renoviso, and we have so many interesting engineering challenges ahead of us.
We’re currently in the final stages of rebuilding our stack using bleeding edge technologies to enable us to scale into new product categories and geographies. We’re also working on tablet apps for our installers to streamline our in-home measurements and installations that will also better facilitate the exchange of information between our installers and operations team. We also see an enormous opportunity to create an exceptional shopping experience by leveraging CAD, visualization and augmented reality technology. As an example, we recently spoke with a company that makes infrared sensors (and accompanying SDKs) for iPads that we can use to generate 3D models of clients’ homes on the fly.
JG: How does the engineering team stay involved in the Boston tech community?
MM: Whenever possible we try to attend meet-ups in the area that are relevant to us. We’re currently a bit small to have the bandwidth to open source any of our projects or host meet-ups but certainly would expect to do more of that as we grow.
JG: What types of interests does your team have outside of work?
MM: I think it’s really important for everyone, especially engineers, to keep their minds sharp outside of work. The interests of the team here really run the gamut. Just to name a few: DIY home improvement projects, home brewing beer, metal working, beekeeping, cooking, hiking, travel, and of course the occasional software project.
JG: Want to dish the inside scoop on some of the perks Renoviso offers?
For an early stage startup, Renoviso has some pretty sweet perks! We’ve got standing desks with multiple external displays for our laptops, a newly renovated office space right in Faneuil Hall, and proximity to dozens of amazing lunch spots. And, of course, the team enjoys hanging out together outside of the office doing various things: trivia nights, attending sporting events, bowling, etc. Not to mention, name another startup where you could see firsthand how various home renovation products like windows and hardwood flooring are made? ☺
JG: Complete this sentence for our audience: I love working at Renoviso because…
Easy question: I love working at Renoviso because of the team. We really have some rockstars and have a lot of fun here.
On my team, we’ve got Graham Bartlett, a rising software superstar who’s churning out code like a machine, and Stuart Kolodner, who’s an incredibly talented and experienced software developer. On the business side, Paul Buonopane (our head of marketing) has grown our inbound traffic astronomically and Kerry Crowley (our customer operations manager) is turning all of that traffic into extremely happy customers --- just read some of our Yelp and Angie’s List reviews. And, I’m really excited about our new team members. It’s great to come to work every day with these folks!