At emergency communication company AlertMedia, for example, teams are tasked with gathering real-time threat data from thousands of trusted sources around the globe to determine which end users are impacted by those threats. As users change their location, they get alerted if they’ve moved to an area with active warnings.
“We process over 100 million geospatial operations per hour to calculate threat impact for millions of people around the world,” VP of Engineering Andrea Adams said. It’s no easy task, but with a culture built on trust, Adams said they’re able to accomplish their goals and focus on solving problems for customers.
Professionals at contractor-matching platform Modernize faced their own trial this spring as coronavirus swept the country: contactless appointments. This project was thrust upon employees in the midst of a pandemic, but they stepped up to the plate, Director of Homeowner Communications Jamie Smith said, and many gained unexpected technical chops in the process.
Whether you’re interested in helping digitize in-person interactions for homeowners nationwide or making the country a little safer, these companies are opening their doors for talented new hires.
Modernize helps homeowners throughout the entire process of working with a contractor, including those that specialize in windows, AC, siding or solar panels. The platform matches users with their ideal professional based on their needs and helps book appointments. The company assists 2 million homeowners per year and has helped facilitate almost 9 million contractor appointments so far.
Director of Homeowner Communications Jamie Smith said that in light of social distancing, shifting how appointments are made was a challenge for her team. But employees banded together to create a no-contact win for homeowners and contractors, she said.
How would you describe Modernize’s culture in one word?
Diligence. The work at Modernize is challenging, but the team understands that and fulfills the criteria necessary to be called “diligent.” Our goal is to modernize a homeowner’s experience with contractors, which usually takes place in an environment that includes hands-on interaction. Shifting to no hands-on interaction between contractors and homeowners has been a tough challenge. But it’s been rewarding to see the team change some of our processes to help contractors quickly and efficiently adapt their business to support homeowners with things like virtual appointments. We worked hard under an intense timeline, but the diligence of our team paid off.
It’s been rewarding to see the team change some of our processes to help contractors quickly.”
What’s the coolest project you’ve worked on recently?
We recently started working with some web services that support inbound SMS messaging from our homeowners to help them immediately and automatically with their request. We’ve been able to interpret these responses from our homeowners and respond quickly to help them.
Professionally, this project has challenged me to become even more technically strong as I understand how these web services interact with each other and how we respond. I couldn’t have done that without the opportunity given to me by Modernize, but also by working with such a talented team. It’s satisfying to see marketing and technology work together, but it’s even better when you get to roll up your sleeves to help make it happen.
AlertMedia’s technology gives organizations the tools they need to alert their staff of situations like dangerous weather conditions, terror attacks and other emergencies. Companies like BP, The New Orleans Saints, Volkswagen and H.E.B. use the platform to facilitate rapid two-way communication with their teams.
VP of Engineering Andrea Adams said the company’s work to support emergency communications in over 90 countries requires an all-hands-on-deck team mentality. That mindset makes it easier for team members to jump at opportunities to assist one another when called upon.
How would you describe AlertMedia’s culture in one word?
Trust. It’s at the core of the way teams and individuals interact on a daily basis. We trust that our co-workers have our backs and that leadership will do the right thing. We know that we can ask a question and be confident that we’ll get help without judgment. We trust that there are no hidden agendas. As a result, we get to focus all our energy on solving problems for our customers.
Recently, a member of the engineering support team was unexpectedly out for an extended time. So we asked one of our development team members to assist for a few weeks to help. This task would take them away from their normal job and pull them out of their comfort zone. But they jumped in immediately and had no ego about their own work being put on hold for a few weeks. That response embodies the trust and relationship-based culture at AlertMedia.
We can ask a question and be confident that we’ll get help without judgment.”
What’s the coolest project you’ve worked on recently?
The ongoing development of our threat monitoring system is one of the most exciting projects our engineers are working on. We gather real-time threat data from thousands of trusted sources and analysts around the globe to determine which of our end users are impacted by those threats. As users change their location, they get alerted if they’ve moved to an area with active warnings. We process over 100 million geospatial operations per hour to calculate threat impact for millions of people around the world. Those numbers continue to grow as we add sources and users.
One technical challenge lies in pulling data from disparate sources and filtering it down to meaningful real-time alerts for users. From a professional development standpoint, this project allows me to continue to have a hand in the technical details and direction while managing a growing team.