There is a scene in the Pixar classic “Ratatouille” when the chef explains to the new garbage boy that the kitchen staff is made of much more than cooks—they are artists, at heart, and pirates. “More than cooks are we,” she explains, rather people with diverse and interesting backgrounds who bring a wealth of knowledge to the table to supplement their skill sets.
This is what you’ll find at Clustrix, where some of the smartest, interesting and most driven people come together to produce amazing results.
Take our Customer Operations Engineer Henry Hwang, for instance, a San Francisco native who has been living in London for the past 20 years. Henry’s background is actually in art; he earned a bachelor’s degree in Ancient Near Eastern Archaeology and Art History (Egyptology) from UC Berkeley in 1989.
After graduating, Henry’s career took a different course as he went to work in the database, broadcasting and financial services industries before landing at Clustrix at the recommendation of a former colleague. Henry was brought on board to help spearhead an initiative to provide pre- and post-sale support for Clustrix’s international customers.
When we sat down with Henry to discuss his role, he spoke of not only the super-smart staff he has encountered, but also the highly scalable database product that the engineering team created—something that no other large database company has been able to replicate to this day.
“Researching the company, I was very impressed with the product and with the people who were working on it,” he explained. “I came from the IT infrastructure side and it used to take up to a week to get a cluster built and configured. With ClustrixDB, it takes minutes and you have a database service ready to handle traffic!”
What does he love most about working for Clustrix? He was quick to mention the autonomous work environment and the ability to prioritize his work.
“I appreciate the trust that the company has in me to work from home, too,” Henry explained. “I don’t have to commute to central London, which is great. And I’ve been fortunate to have understanding and supportive managers and colleagues who give me the space to have a great work/life balance. I keep busy with volleyball, guitar and tai chi.”
While it’s difficult to describe a typical day in the life of any Clustrix employee, as jobs and roles are constantly changing, Henry’s time is usually spent reviewing overnight incidents and prioritizing what needs to be worked on, and supporting escalations. He also works with customers, helping potential clients understand how to test and use the Clustrix database more effectively, and assisting existing customers with migrations, upgrades, and individual product plans.
As you can see, Henry’s role—like that of most Clustrix employees—is customer-facing and requires strong people skills as well as technical knowledge.
“I’m involved in the on-call rotation, so if there is an emergency, I’ll be directly involved with helping the customer,” he explained.
So, what’s your story? Do you have a background in medieval literature, and a passion for technology? Did you spend a month aboard an Indonesian fishing vessel before discovering a love of computer science? We want to hear from you!