"So, What Do You Do?" - Top Engineering Talent Share Their Job Responsibilities
Career Path is a regular series on VentureFizz where we connect with individuals from our BIZZpages, which are the fastest-growing tech companies in the Boston tech scene. We learn a lot about each person's background and what a day in the life is like for them.
There are lots of interesting jobs within the engineering function at a company... from writing code as a Software Engineer to managing a team of engineers, or Quality Assurance... DevOps, etc.
We decided to take a look at the day-to-day responsibilities from recent Career Path profiles to answer that always popular question... "So, What Do You Do?"
"I'm a backend software developer, which means I help maintain the millions of lines of code that govern the business logic behind Veson's software. Sometimes that means fixing bugs and sometimes it means building new features. There is another team that focuses on UI controls and visual features, but the work that I do is in the logic behind that, which is mostly in C++, C#, and SQL."
"Handle a lot of the project management for my team and help prioritize tasks since we get a ton of unplanned work and requests, go to high-level architecture meetings with other teams to scope out what the DevOps and security portion would look like, vet third-party products to determine if it’s better to build or buy the software; manage the on-call schedule and participate in on the call for both the infrastructure and the application side of things, schedule all of the onboarding meetings for the new hires, work on determining what career ladders and career growth looks like for my team and for all of the engineering team looks like as a whole, hands-on the keyboard to help determine the cause of outages or deploy pipeline issues, work on rolling out small projects and working towards DevOps goals, interviewing candidates who want to join our Engineering team, and for fun, I organize or help organize Game Nights, Beer Friday, sponsoring a community garden, Engineer Breakfasts, and Engineering Offsites (like going to King’s bowling)."
"Our team combines aspects of Site Reliability Engineering, Service Design Consultancy, and Operations. We ensure that our infrastructure continues to enable our growth and business objectives; create, curate, and champion patterns and best practices for cloud-native designs; partner with our engineering teams to produce solutions that are scalable, observable, and sustainable; provide development tools, systems, and methodologies that allow our engineering teams to manage their own services in production; manage our infrastructure, responding to operational issues that impact our workloads; manage our relationships and costs with cloud providers and vendors.
My role at EverQuote is to build, grow, and sustain a team that achieves these goals in an open, transparent, and inclusive way."
"I put the building blocks for what we need to build in the proper execution order, keeping in mind technical dependencies and time to execute. I ensure 'planned work' is broken down to levels that engineers can actually execute. I keep engineers in check to deliver projects by our committed dates. I work with the engineers reporting to me to grow their technical and business skills and advance their careers."
"My team and I are responsible for the main application sold by Cogito -- Dialog. We are responsible for taking the ideas and specifications given to use by the Product department and turning them into the beautiful, cutting edge applications that we sell to enterprise customers to make people’s lives better."
"My current position is half development and half management. I am fortunate to lead and architect/design multiple projects in parallel and contribute to the developing of those projects. In addition, I am involved with mentoring others on those projects and provide direction to help get their tasks completed."
"I’m the engineering lead for one theme at edX. We have aligned our staff around particular groups of business problems that we call a “theme”. To solve these business problems we built cross-functional teams composed of staff from marketing, data science, product management, user experience, education services, the executive team, and engineering.
My primary responsibility is to ensure engineering is able to do our part to enable the team to solve the business problems. I am responsible for making sure we have the right staff, that we have the right tools, that engineers are aligned and that we can rapidly deliver prototypes and production-ready features. I focus a lot on process and people, but ultimately I do whatever it takes to solve the problems. One day five of us stopped what we were doing and did manual data entry for an hour since it was faster than writing a script and it needed to be done immediately!
To me, it’s about creating an environment where this cross-functional group of humans can build incredible products. How do we create a team that feels inspired and excited to solve the problem, is proud of their work, is more effective together than apart, has a big impact, and feels valued as individuals and as a group? It’s a really hard problem. Much harder than any engineering challenge I’ve faced!"
"Renoviso is a startup environment, so we all take on a lot of different responsibilities. Along with architecting our software, I also do my fair share of code reviews, mentor some of the younger engineers, and work closely with other departments to help define new product features and enhancements."
"I have two different lines of responsibilities. First is to make sure my team is fully equipped and able to test, develop, and manage the quality of our product within their individual scrum teams. Second is to manage the overall structure and needs of the QA department (and often beyond) that spans a dozen scrum teams. Each team is unique, has its own needs, problems, and fires to put out."
"At SessionM, we are very fast-paced, so we’re typically working on more than one project at any point in time. As Director of Engineering, I am responsible for ensuring the quality of our platform across the board, as well as for delivering integrated solutions with third-party platforms like Adobe Marketing Cloud and Salesforce. From a quality perspective, we currently have a team of 12 engineers that are actively using automation and manual testing to ensure quality. To be able to turn things around faster we try to constantly innovate, and my role is to keep the team sharp, motivated and help them deliver by giving them the freedom to execute on initiatives where they can excel and be the best at what they do. From an integration perspective, my job is to work closely with our product teams, solutions architects, engineering teams and partners to deliver an integrated experience between SessionM and third-party platforms."
"The team has grown, and I now lead the Research team within Wayfair Next. I am responsible for evaluating promising technology for use at Wayfair, supporting my team so that they can make creative connections to solve challenging problems, and identifying research projects with ambitious goals and potential for many smaller secondary wins."