One of our core engineering values at Verkada is ownership. When working on a project, I take ownership by holding myself accountable for all the project's successes and failures along the way and, ultimately, building something I'm really proud of.
Ownership is important at Verkada, particularly on our Alarms and Intrusion team, because we frequently act as our customers' first line of defense. They rely on our products to work reliably to keep their business, employees, and property safe, and it's fulfilling to know that our products accomplish that goal.
Working on a recent project — the Verkada horn speaker — reminded me of the value of ownership. The horn speaker is designed for deterrence and enables professional monitoring agents or security teams to talk down to intruders via Verkada's Command dashboard or mobile app.
Developing the New Speaker Product
Taking the horn speaker from concept to reality was a pivotal experience and a big, exciting challenge in my engineering journey. As my first project leading a product's development from the ground up, I was at the helm of crafting both the firmware (i.e., device) and backend (i.e., server) code. By collaborating with various teams worldwide, I ensured our joint development manufacturers (JDMs) had all the essential firmware support they needed, ensuring timely product delivery to our customers.
Expanding My Technical Skills
I was able to expand my technical skills by working with several technologies that were new to me, including WebRTC, Terraform, Kubernetes, and ArgoCD. I am primarily an embedded software engineer, but I had the opportunity to develop in many different parts of the engineering stack, including the backend, platform infrastructure, and even parts of the front end, as I wrote and supported the code driving this product.
Relying on Managerial Support and Expertise
Leading a small team and knowing that my manager trusted me to own and drive the project as a whole helped build my confidence as both an engineer and a leader. Not only did I have the trust of my manager, but I also had critical support from other senior engineers across the company. This level of support I had — on this project and others — is something that I've found to be unique to Verkada and not common at other companies.
“Smaller teams help encourage autonomy and create a more pronounced sense of ownership. Not only does this result in building features and code with more care, but it also leads to higher engagement and can contribute to overall job satisfaction.”
Being entrusted by my team, cross-functional partners, and managers to own and drive the development of our new horn speaker has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my career. For me, seeing it deliver a real impact in our customers' day-to-day lives is something I'm especially proud of and something we always strive for at Verkada. Looking back on what we accomplished in the span of five months, it has been an amazing privilege to be involved with from the very beginning.
Want to join the team here at Verkada? Check out our open roles on the Verkada careers page. We're always looking for talented and passionate individuals to help build innovative solutions that make people safer.