Staff Insight at YellowDog
You may have seen our founder Gareth Williams in the news, but who else is making the magic happen at YellowDog? Get to know Alan Parry.
What is your job title here at YellowDog, and what does that mean?
I am Director of Engineering. My job is to turn business opportunities into working technology which will then bring in fresh opportunities.
When did you join YellowDog, and why?
I joined in October 2017. I had just finished my last job and I was looking for something that looked really challenging and interesting, with the chance to work with good people. The opportunity at YellowDog appeared, and it was an easy decision for me.
What does an ‘average’ day for you look like?
I have three kids, so an average day is usually starting the morning somewhere between 6 and 7am, wrestling clothes onto (and food into) various children! The rest of the day is easy after that!
We talk constantly with our team in Lithuania, usually in 20 minute sessions with the Development Manager there: any problems that we need to solve, tasks we’re working on, and clarifying any uncertainties between us. I try to ensure that the team is set up for the day. Then there are the less technical challenges: people management, clarifying solutions for projects, that sort of thing. There is not much of a daily rhythm, but I work to balance reactive and proactive tasks.
What is it about YellowDog that you think is unique?
For me, it is the size of the organisation. The majority of my experience is with large organisations where I was responsible for driving change. At YellowDog, change is constant! Positive change is daily and that pace of innovation is exhilarating. The opportunity to make fundamental decisions about the technology infrastructure which will be the backbone of the company for years to come is incredibly exciting. For me, that’s completely unique.
What excites you the most about YellowDog’s technology?
We’re creating a platform that is not only robust and secure, but that is massively scalable. Usually you only get one of those three ‘corners’ of the triangle: it’s robust but small and not secure, or it’s secure but can’t grow, or it’s growing but erratically and without security. We’re completely breaking the mould of what cloud is ‘meant’ to deliver, and that’s incredibly exciting.
What is the office atmosphere like, and how does it compare to previous places you have worked?
Here at YellowDog, we are very fast paced, very collaborative, very open, and very honest. There are great people and great minds contributing to at times a broad number of opportunities. I have to cut through that to what matters most, and then the team get behind it.
How do you split your time between the office / elsewhere?
Mostly I work in the YellowDog office, but I pick up a few hours in the evenings for a few times a week for the more technical aspects of what I do, so that I can dedicate office time to our people.
When you’re in the office, are there any places in Bristol that you particularly like / have a connection with?
I love Bristol and the centre especially, that balance of parks and historical sites, and modern living. It’s always full of people with a lovely atmosphere. We have all the benefits of big city things but you still bump into friends and people you know, the way that you would in a small town.
Did anything surprise you after joining YellowDog?
How much progress had already been made: especially how many loyal customers we have built relationships with. It was also impressive to see how much of a brand identity and internal community there was.
What would you say to someone who was considering YellowDog as a partner/employer?
YellowDog is packed with great people to work with who are very dedicated to what they do. Everyone here is working with passion and are dedicated to their customers. There are great opportunities for the company and yourself to grow.