If you’re an engineer looking for a career at an organization steeped in business intelligence, awash in analytics, or minted with the mission to help other companies leverage their data, I’ve got good news: Our industry is growing, the work is exciting, and there are so many cutting-edge companies to choose from.
There’s no bad news, only a challenge: Where should you work? Review the LinkedIn intros for a dozen data organizations and you’ll start to see the same keywords. Check out Glassdoor, and you’ll find many companies with positive reviews.
So why Alation, then? As a three-year Alationaut, I may be a bit biased, but I’ve also been here long enough — well past the “job honeymoon” phase — to tell you why Alation is a great place to work, particularly for our engineering teams.
1. Customers Love Us
Before I became Alation’s CTO, I’d held leadership roles at other venture-backed high-growth startups. That means I understood what it means for a tech company in its infancy to transcend the typical Silicon Valley hype — that it’s less about what your platform promises than whether customers respond to, get excited about, and (obviously) purchase your platform because it solves a problem or satisfies a need.
When I was at other organizations, I’d met customers who were also Alation customers, and they raved about the product. And I don’t mean just the IT folks; it was also the end users. And the leading industry analysts — Gartner and Forrester — had (and still have!) great things to say.
2. It’s the Product — And a Whole Lot More
When I had an opportunity to work for Alation, what impressed me was not just that the company was growing very fast — a great fit because I love helping companies scale — but when I met the founders, I was impressed by the product, the company vision, and most importantly, the culture.
This is really the kindest place I’ve ever worked. How many engineers can say that?
3. Engineering and Innovation at Alation
At Alation, every role is important. But let’s be honest (and maybe I’m being biased again): Engineers are the lifeblood of Alation. After all, we build the product that our customers love.
When I say lifeblood, I mean we infuse Alation with strength, vitality, and growth. We’re engineers, so we’re innovators at heart, right? During the three years I’ve been here, we’ve evolved from a single-product on-prem company to a multi-product cloud company with customers in countless industries on nearly every continent.
Because of our success, we’ve been adding engineers like crazy. The engineering team has more than quadrupled since I’ve joined, and just like our customers, we have engineers on pretty much every continent.
This evolution has also impacted our culture, transforming it from a hacker engineering culture emphasizing speed to one balancing speed and stability. Architecturally, we’ve evolved from a monolithic architecture to a more microservices-based architecture. Similarly, our organization has evolved from a monolith to a more distributed one where a pod — consisting of engineers, product managers, and product designers — owns a product area end to end.
The pandemic has definitely changed how we work, fundamentally. We were a very office-centric culture before the pandemic, but we now have a very-remote friendly culture and we consider ourselves more timezone-based than location-based. This is a boon for our engineers located anywhere in the world — but we still have our offices and engineers can come in whenever they want, whether it’s a design session with teammates or a grooming session with product managers/designers.