Rob is our Lead DevOps Engineer, working from our Singapore office. He’s been with JAM since it’s early days and is at his best when working on complex DevOps projects.
I had a call with Rob to talk about how his role has developed since starting with JAM, what he enjoys about DevOps, as well as working with the JAM team.
What does an average day look like for you?
Since starting working at the JAM Singapore office back in 2017, my day-to-day role has continuously grown. We start as the UK team are fast asleep, so will usually pick up where they left off with issues and tickets, and work closely with the Australian team on their projects as well. I’ll check our tickets, as well as resourcing and project boards to prioritise work for the day. We have a daily Singapore team catch up at 10am to go through clients, projects and tasks, and then I’ll get on with my day.
When I began, my role was primarily to solve the issues that came in during the UK daytime, however, now our support team has doubled, my role has evolved to include more consultancy work for new clients who need bespoke hosting solutions created for them or DevOps services. I get satisfaction from finding solutions to problems, for example, designing effective ways of scaling Kubernetes, or running mySQL backups when clients are sharing DBs.
We have been working with agencies implementing DevOps and Cloud solutions around commercial CMS products for a long time. Of late I have been working with an agency on designing an architecture for one of their clients using Sitecore version 9. This means I have to work on designing a new architecture and new DevOps processes to allow a large team of developers to work on the solution at the same time. As a lead DevOps engineer I need to be constantly getting exposure to latest technology, tools and training to ensure I can build on my existing skills and find new solutions to things such as automating deployment and Infrastructure as code.
As another example, I have recently been working on another project whereby the agency initially came to us asking for an architecture that would run Service Fabric. We needed to consult with them and advise them on the pros and cons and explore if this is the right option for the particular use case. These kind of projects bring such huge value for clients as its gives us the ability to change things that are not fit for purpose and explore options that suit the client better.
What has been your favourite project you’ve worked on?
The work we did with Vodafone Romania as I got to use the full remit of my DevOps skills, and this was a huge achievement for my team and fantastic results for the client. However, it was equally as challenging – it was a very high-security project, and a lot of moving parts meant we continually needed to adapt our solutions to fit in with what the client needed.
Cult Wines was also an interesting client brief, as it required lots of problem-solving when working out how to support the client’s move into Asia. Our solution involved developing a platform to separate customer data across two markets, both China and Europe.
Favourite things about working for Just After Midnight
Every day is different at JAM – the work sets the pace, meaning sometimes it’s very busy with current projects, and other days we can spend more time researching solutions for upcoming work. This is nice as it means we get to breathe once in a while!
The work I get to do is varied, and I’m constantly being challenged to research and learn new skills, and adapt to new technologies – it’s the great thing about working in such a fast-paced industry.
The Singapore team is very close-knit, and not competitive. I have great relationships with all the CEOs – Freddie over here in Singapore, as well as Sam and Kris in London and Sydney who I speak to most days. All three of the CEO’s will consult with the team before agreeing to client work, and whilst they will push us to expand our horizons, they also respect what the limits of the team are so that we’re never out of our depth or pushed for time.
Thanks for chatting Rob!