Team spotlight: Vendia Engineering (Pt. 1)
At Vendia, our international, remote-first team of kind humans helps our customers automate and accelerate their data workflows across business networks. And while our product is pretty dang cool, the teams that help us share it with the world are even cooler.
In Part 1 of our Vendia Engineering team spotlight, get to know some of our incredible colleagues, and hear what it’s like to be a part of Vendia. Then, check out our careers page, and see if you’d like to join us!
- Role: Senior Software Engineer
- Homebase: Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia
- Enjoys: Reading (mostly Fantasy), walking and swimming at the beach with the family, 3D printing
- Go-to karaoke song: Tenacious D, “Tribute”
- Find Brett on Twitter | LinkedIn | GitHub
What drew you to your work in engineering, and what keeps bringing you back? As a kid, computers (and technology, in general) seemed like magic, and I wanted to learn how it all worked. The magic starts to fade with understanding, but in engineering, there’s always something new to learn.
What do you love about working in Vendia Engineering? I love that Vendia is truly remote-first. My family was able to move back to Australia, and I’m able to continue working with world-class engineers and people from other disciplines.
- Role: Full Stack Engineer
- Homebase: San Francisco, CA, USA
- Hobbies: Coding 😎
- Go-to karaoke song: Johnny Cash, “Folsom Prison Blues”
- Find David on Twitter | LinkedIn | GitHub
What drew you to your work in engineering, and what keeps bringing you back? I began programming because I needed a website but didn't have any money to pay someone to build it for me. So, I just started googling things, tinkering around, and slowly but surely learned "how things work." Learning to code, like any other skill, is just a simple process of accumulation. It’s a journey of trial and error.
Fast forward 10 years, and here I am at Vendia building a bunch of different things from our website, to our user service, to the CLI.
I write code because it helps me solve problems in a much more efficient way, which, in turn, gives me back lots of time to solve other problems. It's a giant force multiplier.
I believe that every human is a polymath and has the innate capability to leverage this skill to "code", if they so choose.
Don't be afraid of other hats. Try them all on. Here’s the full story of how I learned to code.
What do you love about working on the Vendia Engineering team? I love working with the Vendia engineering team because we have a bunch of folks who have worked on some GIANT infrastructure services that have massively scaled like API Gateway, AWS Athena, DDB, and AWS Lambda. This kind of knowledge is hard to come by at a small startup, and it feels like we have rocket boosters for what we are trying to build.
Additionally, the way folks work is interesting to see. We frequently have design docs and reviews on the systems we are building, and I'm always learning something new.
On top of all this, I'm a huge proponent of serverless architectures and our stack is entirely serverless 😃. It's incredible the outcomes you can achieve with managed cloud services these days. It's an extra added bonus that a large portion of the team worked on the serverless services that we use to deliver Vendia to our users.
What does a productive, rewarding weekday look like for you? A productive day to me looks like this:
- Create a written plan of action for tomorrow
- Go to sleep at decent hour
- Wake up (maybe snooze button once or twice)
- Have coffee outside in the morning sun
- Then get into a flow state knocking down items from the plan of action
- If I need a break, going on a walk outside is my go-to
Flow state or deep work is an incredible thing. The world melts away and you completely immerse yourself in the task at hand.
If I've achieved a flow state and learned something new that day, I consider it a success.
- Role: Senior Fullstack Engineer
- Homebase: San Diego, CA, USA
- Hobbies: Books, art/design, houseplants, video games
- Go-to karaoke song: Bill Withers, "Lean on Me"
- Now streaming: Ambient electronica
- Find Matt on Twitter | LinkedIn | GitHub
What does a productive, rewarding weekday look like for you? Working as an individual contributor on a remote-first engineering team means I spend the bulk of my time at home, alone, which I LOVE. I love my wife and mostly enjoy the chaos of raising young kids as well, but I treasure the quiet, focused time that comprises most of my work days at Vendia. Most days involve one or two meetings with coworkers to sync up and collaborate on larger initiatives, but we keep meetings to a minimum and lean into async communication (Slack, Notion docs, Github Issues) when possible.
Additional perks of working remotely include homemade snacks, matcha lattes, quick 5-minute stretches/workouts, and random breaks with my wife (who also works remotely) whenever I want!
What drew you to your work in engineering, and what keeps you coming back? Before segueing into engineering-focused roles, I worked in the games industry in, primarily, art and design roles that included light scripting work from time to time. At the time, I didn’t think I was capable of “real” programming, nor did I think I would enjoy it. After a big company layoff, I took some time to dabble with building my own mobile game and begrudgingly endeavored to learn C# so I could handle the coding duties, as well as what I assumed would be the fun stuff — the design, animation, and music. It wasn’t long, however, before I found myself enjoying the creative problem-solving involved in authoring code and craving the addictive feedback loop of struggling with a bit of code, conquering it, and finally seeing the results on-screen.
I’m solving a new set of problems in my current role at Vendia, but I still crave that feedback loop. It never gets old!
- Role: Senior Full-stack Engineer
- Homebase: Omaha, NE, USA
- Hobbies: Golf, sand volleyball, reading
- Go-to karaoke song: Anything by Queen
- Now pod-ing: “People I (Mostly) Admire” with Steven Levitt
- Find Jake on Twitter | LinkedIn | GitHub
What drew you to your work in engineering, and what keeps bringing you back? Engineering is all about solving interesting problems with incomplete data and competing priorities. I love solving the nitty-gritty details of a tough engineering problem, but I enjoy the “people” aspect that comes with every new feature or bug even more. That means answering questions like:
- What is the user experience for customers?
- How can we improve that experience?
- How much time/budget can we devote to solving this problem?
- How can we design a solution that is easy for other engineers to understand and support?
What do you love about working in Vendia Engineering? Our engineering team is full of intelligent, hard-working, and kind individuals. I love collaborating with the team to dream up, design, and implement new features for our customers. As a full-stack engineer, I (luckily) have the opportunity to work, not only with the engineering team but with the Vendia team as a whole. I’m able to listen to feedback from our Solution Architects working with customers, define requirements with the Product team, envision a great customer experience with our Design team, and implement and iterate on a solution with fellow engineers.
- Role: Full Stack Software Engineer
- Homebase: Atuntaqui, Ecuador
- Hobbies: Cooking, flight simulation, Formula 1, gaming
- Now streaming: MEUTE, “What Else Is There”
- Find Daniel on Twitter | LinkedIn | GitHub
What drew you to your work in engineering, and what keeps bringing you back? I was drawn to engineering through a love for technical problem-solving. Once I was in the industry, I found that this love could be a force for good in helping others in different industries all around the world while applying technology effectively to make their lives easier. What keeps bringing me back is finding new ways to solve problems elegantly and quickly and learning from others in the process.
What do you love about working in Vendia Engineering? Vendia’s engineering team is uniquely experienced and very kind. Every day I come to work I feel that I am becoming a better engineer through the consistent care and mentoring that I receive from those around me. Like me, they are all passionate about solving problems and love coming to their jobs and sharing their passions with others.
- Role: Software Engineering Intern
- Homebase: Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
- Hobbies: Food and travel, rock climbing
- Find Victor on LinkedIn | GitHub
What drew you to engineering as a discipline? I love the ability to create incredible software no matter where I am. Being able to work on many cool products by just clicking buttons on a keyboard still astounds me to this day.
What do you love about working on the Vendia Engineering team? I love being able to solve challenging problems with a group of bright and talented individuals. The engineering problems faced by Vendia are unlike anything I’ve seen before, and being able to tackle them feels incredibly rewarding and fun.
- Role: Senior Software Engineer
- Homebase: Seattle, WA, USA
NOTE: Dan’s an invaluable member of our Vendia engineering team. He’s also someone who’s happy to fly under the radar. You’re welcome to follow his work over at GitHub.
- Role: Director of Engineering
- Homebase: Seattle, WA, USA
- Hobbies: Anything you can do in the mountains or on the water, especially with kids
- Now pod-ing: Smash Boom Best (w/ said kids); 99 PI and Cautionary Tales
- Find Kevin on LinkedIn | Github
What’s the best advice you’ve received in your career? One of the things that I’ve learned through mentors is that it’s really hard to predict the future, but it’s essential to make plans. For Vendia, especially as such a young company, we can make predictions. We absolutely place bets. But, the key to our success is going to be listening to our customers and ensuring we create, iterate, and pivot when needed.
What do you love about working on the Vendia Engineering team? My role is pretty fantastic: Of course, engineering directly impacts every aspect of our company, but I'm also super close to our customers. I’m at the intersection of what we at Vendia want the future to be and what our customers tell us the future should be. And I get to work with really smart people who can help me realize BOTH of those outcomes.
If you’re looking for a place where you can build with joy and solve challenging, but rewarding problems with other kind humans, we’d love to hear from you. Explore our careers page, share any postings with your network, and by all means, stay connected when you follow us on LinkedIn.