By the time Eyad started thinking about a new job, he had been working as a head of engineering at RevAsia for about 1 and a half years.
“When I became the head of engineering, I got a chance to build a team, hire and train engineers. I learned basics of management as well. It was interesting at first, but soon I became sort of the highest authority in my area, which meant I didn’t have anyone to learn from”.
“At first I didn’t know what I wanted from a new job. There were a few offers for me to consider, but nothing felt quite right. It took me 2-3 months to make a list of non-negotiables for my future job:
- I was not going to be a full-time developer
- I didn’t want to work just on one product
- I wanted to work with someone more experienced than me
The Turn Of Events
“I finished the list right about the time I served my notice period in RevAsia. At the same time, Ash (Ashley Crick, CTO of Iflix) invited me for a beer. Before heading out I looked him up on Linkedin – the guy was like a rockstar in IT world. Ashley worked as a CTO for big companies; IBM, launched his own startups, and on top of that, he was a musician and a champion in skydiving. Just the kind of person I wanted to work with!”
“However, when we met, he pitched me the engineering team at Iflix. I remembered my list of non-negotiables. I was sure I didn’t want to be just a full-time developer, so I had to decline.”
“I told him I got easily bored. I know it’s a bad thing. Certainly, it is not the thing you could tell anyone who is interviewing you. But at that moment we both knew, I wasn’t interested in the position he was offering, so I could tell him that. That’s where things took an interesting turn.”
“Funny enough”, Ash said, “Just today we have decided that we are going to build this new team, a team that will think of all new features, work on proving concepts and validate innovative ideas. It seems an engineer who gets easily bored will get on well with this team”.
“Imagine”, continued Ash, “Now Iflix has X hours of content. As we scale to 30 more countries we want to multiply this number by 50. How can we do it without hiring 50 times more people? That’s a challenge for the innovation team. Here is another one: how can we generate subtitles for 10,000 hours of content without hiring more copywriters?”
“The innovation team was meant to consider scalable problems like these ones as well as to work with big data, dive into business analytics and business intelligence challenges to make sure data could exactly reveal what the business needed to know about its customers.”
“The team had to process the data and come up with patterns or ask right questions to make sense of it. Of course, there were also innovations. For example, the team would scrutinize new technologies like a voice recognition and think how to improve the product with its help. Everything sounded like a perfect job for me, so I signed the contract on the same day without negotiating the offer.”
Check out Iflix’s Company Culture!
What About The Culture?
It’s often said that people look at culture first when looking for a job. Eyad gave us a great explanation of what culture meant to him as an engineer.
“Iflix is known as a great place to be at, they have a beautiful office and fun corporate culture. But so does RevAsia. I did not care much. I already lived that experience and didn’t feel like it was contributing a lot to my career,” said Eyad.
“What I did care about was their engineering culture.”
Check out Iflix’s Company Culture!
“Before meeting Ash, I met the engineering team and got to know what was important for them. I knew this team cared about data and thinks of building to scale – that was the type of problems that were relevant to me, so I knew I would fit well into the engineering culture of Iflix. It was the company’s engineering culture that was important to me but not the office one, as the latter is usually understood.”
Ash saw what I wanted in a job and he his offer drew me in when I knew that it was an opportunity to grow. It was how the thought processes of the team that I would be working with that made me make the jump. And also the promise of an opportunity to not be boxed in to a sole product, but be in a position to explore and improve multiple projects.
“Now that was what I wanted. I wanted growth, and I found it here at Iflix.”