After five years of coding professionally for a consulting companies, I didn’t initially think I would even want to work for a startup. Then I saw an ad on Facebook for Smartly.io Fast Track, solved the challenge and got invited to lunch. After a couple of lunches with different people at Smartly.io, I was pretty convinced that this company would be a great place to work. Now it’s been five weeks since I joined Smartly.io and I wanted to write about the main differences I’ve found in working for a startup compared to a consulting company.
Me and my colleagues in Smartly.io's Business Development team have the easiest and hardest job in the world. On the one hand, all we have to do is start conversations and know our stuff when they get rolling. In turn, convincing our counterparts at leading advertisers and media agencies around the world to start those conversations with us is far from straightforward, as it lies in our remit to provide the motivation for them to do so, not theirs.
One of Smartly’s most valuable unique selling points is our quick and responsive support. As the company's customer base grows, we need to find ways to be able to maintain the high quality and fast response rates that our clients need - even improve them. Skype chats are no longer an option at our scale.
Our PhD, Chief Data Scientist Markus Ojala loves building team spirit, inspiring people and playing jazz piano. Before Smartly.io he worked as a Senior Data Scientist at Comptel and as a data mining researcher at Aalto University. In addition, Markus has experience from working at one of the cutting edge data analytics startups called Xtract which was acquired by Comptel in 2012.
I met Arto Tolonen for the first time when he was building his own startup called Audiodraft. He co-founded it and worked as a Chief Technology Officer for over four years. In addition, Arto has coached plenty of startups in Finland and worked at Reaktor as a Senior Consultant. He returned to the startup circles last month and now works as a Product Lead here at Smartly.io. I decided to challenge him with some questions.
In 2012, Lauri Oikari won Hello World Open, the first Finnish Coding Championship. He joined Smartly.io as a Software Developer about a year later. Lauri has experience in algorithm design and native mobile app development. Now, he expands his knowledge by building a scalable SaaS product with the latest web technologies.