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People Stories: A Strong Sense of Community, Respect, and Transparency Works to Build Trust in the Workplace

Kripa Sreenivasan

As part of our People at Yugabyte series, we sat down with Kripa Sreenivasan, a lead software development engineer on our Engineering/Quality Assurance team. Kripa has been with Yugabyte since September 2021, and she took a few minutes out of her busy schedule to chat with us. Continue reading to learn more about Kripa’s experience at Yugabyte.

Tell us about your experience at Yugabyte

With Yugabyte, I am making my debut at a start-up, having spent the previous 10 years in larger organizations. When I started, I felt that working at Yugabyte was challenging and would offer impactful problem-solving opportunities. Now that I am 14 months in, Yugabyte (and YugabyteDB) has proven to be just that—exciting and technically enriching with exposure to interesting features such as point-in-time-recovery, packed column storage, and backup and restore.

As the SDET team, we tackle new incoming features and keep regressions under check with automation suites for functional, stress, random workload generation, chaos testing—to name a few.I could write more about this, but I fear I might write an entire new blog post, so I will stop 😉.

This has motivated me to generate ideas leveraging my experience while also giving me the chance to learn and solve the problems around testing a database across various dimensions. While navigating this distributed database journey, I have been able to soak up valuable learnings on customer usage patterns, workloads, and how customers envisage using our database. This is all thanks to the extremely insightful interactions I have had with field engineering and other customer evangelists. I feel truly honored to work alongside some of the smartest and most humble minds in the industry, who I believe have all congregated here because of the company culture that’s been built and sustained over the last 6 years. I feel very confident about Yugabyte being able to establish itself as a major player in the distributed and cloud-native database space in the coming years.

How do you associate with Yugabyte’s core values of Trust, Relationships, and Outcomes?

Yugabyte has a people-first culture that works to build trust through transparency. This is not just talk. There is a genuine commitment from the leadership to make this happen. In spite of having a remote-first workforce, the leadership has been successful in propagating our core values through regular team gatherings aimed at fostering a spirit of oneness. Yugabyte has a strong sense of community—a belongingness combined with a passion in our shared mission. Yugabeings are very communicative, hard working, and, most importantly, respectful. It is a truly rewarding experience to be able to explore avenues of one’s interest and advance your career while also translating your work into the desired outcome for Yugabyte customers.

What has been your greatest learning so far, and how has Yugabyte contributed to your growth?

A distributed database system is a playground with a wide field of vision for a test engineer. It constantly challenges us to push the boundaries of possibilities, and I love it! The SDET team is the first line of defense, be it:

  • The myriad of possibilities posed by the huge surface area of the query layer
  • Cross feature interactions among features such as tablet splitting, asynchronous replication, backup and restore, point in time recovery, etc.
  • The complexities that can set in when these features have to be verified at scale across different cloud providers
  • Application orchestration mechanisms or the unique challenges individual deployment types pose.

We are solving interesting problems by testing the product across different upgrade paths, taking complex workloads into consideration, automating complex stress scenarios while introducing unexpected variables and nemesis. The hiring strategy at Yugabyte has been thoughtfully crafted to include folks with deep knowledge in the data space. This is very handy for our team.

My biggest learning so far is the number of factors one has to keep in mind while evaluating and testing a new feature. As YugabyteDB further positions itself as a strong player in the distributed database market by continuously adding new features, I am able to see that translate into new learnings and expanded horizons as I progress my engineering career.

How do you like to spend your leisure time? Is there a passion project outside of work?

Let me highlight two of my passions in no particular order. I love to travel and explore the world. I’ve undertaken two high-altitude Himalayan treks (15,200 ft.). I have traveled to over seven countries and explored a lot of places in India. I’m also a yoga and mindfulness enthusiast, soaking in the calm it brings into my life everyday.

Any advice for your fellow colleagues, new hires, or those who are looking at Yugabyte as a potential employer?

The cloud database and database-as-service market that we operate in is huge, and the global giants that have chosen Yugabyte to handle their large workloads stands as testimony to the fact that our database is good! I would highly recommend Yugabyte as an employer to anyone who is looking to solve challenging problems, collaborate with the smartest brains in the industry, and experience a flexible and people-friendly work culture while building and growing their career. Yugabyte takes the wellbeing of its employees seriously, offering scheduled wellness days off and unlimited vacation.

It’s hard to get a true sense of how working for a company will actually feel until you join. However, I do think that during my interview, Yugabyte did a fabulous job explaining what exactly it means to be a Yugabeing. I strongly believe interviews are a two-way evaluation process, so my interviews with Yugabyte were discussions that really helped me understand the job, the culture, and the people. I strongly encourage you to interview with us. My positive experience with Yugabyte, in terms of the excitement and passion employees have for our product and the respectful work culture, started in my interviews and has sustained from that point. Take a sneak peek into our world by participating in our weekly Yugabyte Friday Tech talks on LinkedIn, join our community slack channel, check us out on GitHub.

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