A Look at Our Fresh Grads and Their Journey Thus Far

At AppDynamics, our employees come from some of the best and most renowned universities worldwide. This also includes many of the younger, fresher faces of our company. On-campus recruiting begins in the fall and continues until the early months of winter, in which we interview hundreds of students to see if they have what it takes to join one of the top software companies in the world. These fresh grads provide us with a new perspective, along with innovative and cutting-edge ways of thinking, all of which is reflected in their work and the projects that they engage in everyday. Take a look at what our most recent grads have to say about working at AppDynamics…

Yuhui Feng

Yuhui (Felix) is a graduate from Ohio State University with a master’s degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering. He has interned with IBM Research and has a passion for the Java world, but most of all enjoys sleeping. He became an AppDynamo in June of this year and is now a Software Engineer on our APM team based in San Francisco.

What made you come to AppDynamics?

Number one in the APM field in the world. (Quietly: Full stock of snacks everyday.)

What’s the coolest project you’ve worked on so far?

Creating new field tests in DB monitoring.

What is most challenging about your job?

The most challenging thing about my work is to understand the new features and new APIs in the beginning. For a new grad employee, every feature or concept is totally new, so you need to fully understand the underlying logic and workflow to make sure you have a comprehensive test plan to cover all corner cases and ensure product quality.

What are great skills and traits to have at AppDynamics?

You must have a passion to learn new skills and love to ask questions and discuss the problem in depth with your colleagues.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

No restriction in working hours, getting instant help from colleagues, and tech and product knowledge being shared frequently.

What’s your favorite unexpected perk?

Delicious breakfast on Monday and the shuttle to work.

What advice would you give yourself if you could go back in time and give it to yourself?

Read more books, learn new tech, and that Java is important.

 

Slater Bridgman

Slater is a recent Georgia Southern University graduate and percussionist who has been at the company for about five months now. He’s an avid television fan and enjoys watching shows such as Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, and Westworld. Slater is based in our Dallas office as a Business Development Representative.

What made you come to AppDynamics?

The amazing growth potential, work culture, and great people.

What’s the coolest project you’ve worked on so far?

Being able to talk to large companies and do business with them. Can’t say who they are, though —  they aren’t customers yet.

What’s challenging about your job?

Starting out, there is a lot of information about the product that you have to learn. Everyday I’m learning new things. It is challenging, but it keeps me fresh and helps me grow.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

I enjoy going on the quarterly trips. We’ve done a Top Golf event, and I have been to Toronto, San Francisco, and now we are doing a curling event. All these awesome events and I have only been here a little over four months! It really is an amazing experience.

What are great skills and traits to have at AppDynamics?

Communication and listening. You have to be able to understand what the customer is looking for, and communicate not only the value to the customer, but also communicate with the reps you are supporting.

What’s your favorite unexpected perk?

The massages. I had never gotten a massage until I started here, and now I am addicted.

What advice would you give yourself if you could go back in time and give it to yourself?

That hard work pays off. And pay closer attention in class. There are things I remember hearing about in my sales classes in college that are paying dividends now.

 

David Jeong

David joined AppDynamics in July of this year and is now a Software Engineer on our APM team in San Francisco. He graduated from the University of Waterloo with a degree in Computer Engineering and enjoys spicy foods —  and he means any level of spice.

What made you come to AppDynamics?

The fact that you get to work on a product which impacts customers of different sizes in different industries, and that the work is challenging.

What’s the coolest project you’ve worked on so far?

A project to streamline the build process for the Java agent, which involves migration of existing build systems for our projects from Ant to Gradle. End-goal is to save dev and release times.

What’s challenging about your job?

Due to the nature of our APM product, we need to support a wide range of customer environment setups as well as external third party libraries. Since there are so many possibilities regarding these, it makes it sometimes difficult to debug problems in one go.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

Getting my hands dirty with different libraries or tools that I hadn’t even heard of while in college. I also get to work with the Java agent which deals with Java at a byte code level.

What are great skills and traits to have at AppDynamics?

I think being able to solve problems is very important, since the product and the codebase is so complex, and taking the initiative to ask questions — someone else might have the same question and it might be a good opportunity for everyone to learn.

What’s your favorite unexpected perk?

There is a bean bag chair that is irresistibly comfortable.

What advice would you give yourself if you could go back in time and give it to yourself?

Why wasn’t I here for internships?

Check out our careers page for internship opportunities.

From Students to Engineers: Experience Built to Last

Over the course of their 12-week program, our interns were given a glimpse of life at AppDynamics. Entering the program wide-eyed and eager to learn beyond expectations, they were exposed to our culture of constant improvement and process optimization. From learning to write “cleaner” code to preparing presentations with our executive staff, their time spent at AppDynamics has given them real-world experience that will better prepare them for their post-education careers.

As this summer’s internship program at AppDynamics concludes, we asked our participants to reflect upon their initial goals and what experiences they benefitted from along the way.

Check out Part 1 and Part 2 of our intern series!

Alana Anderson

What’s your biggest accomplishment during your internship? What are you most proud of?

This past week, my team and I gave a product review to the executive staff. For the past month, I had worked on preparing a deck for the meeting to update stakeholders on new product developments, address current focal points for growth and improvement, and identify strategic decisions that needed to be made. While creating this deck was an exercise in itself, it was also a great opportunity for me to reflect on my work here at AppDynamics. Since I joined in May, my team has made massive improvements to the existing self-service product, gained more robust insights into our product experience with user testing studies, and built two entirely new self-service offerings that will be GA this fall. Along the way, I’ve developed incredible relationships with the team members who have made all of this possible, learned how to make data-backed decisions and communicate them effectively, and gained confidence in my ability to drive teams to successful outcomes.

What have you learned from your projects, your mentor, your team, and/or AppDynamics?

At the beginning of my internship, I read Good Product Manager, Bad Product Manager (basically, the PM bible). In the past two months, I’ve been able to live out these commandments first hand. I’ve seen an astounding amount of Good Product Management. I honestly believe that AppDynamics has one of the strongest product teams in all of enterprise software. I haven’t had too many experiences with Bad Product Management, but I’ve definitely learned from a few mistakes. Now two months into my internship, I feel more confident in identifying the good and the bad, building the skills I need to be a good product manager, and recovering from any bad product manager decisions. This field knowledge and intuition is exactly what I sought to gain out of my role here at AppDynamics. 

If you could go back in time to Day 1 of this internship, what advice would you give yourself and why?

Hm, I would give myself the advice that a mentor of mine, Akankshu Dhawan, gave to me about a week into my internship. He challenged me to meet with a new person every day for a half hour. This seems like a lofty task, and I have to say, it hasn’t been easy. It takes a lot of work to identify, reach out to, and plan a meeting with a new person every day! I don’t think this would be possible at a lot of other companies out there. At AppDynamics, it’s surprisingly easy. There are so many unbelievably talented, driven, and interesting people at this company and our warm culture makes reaching out to new people a piece of cake. I can literally ping the author of an interesting blog post to meet, and he will give me an hour of his time that afternoon. I have learned more from these daily meetings than I can even put into words.

Haojun Li

What did you choose to highlight in your demo presentation?

I not only presented my project and the technicality of it, but also the overall experience and soft skills learned throughout the experience. I highlighted the business acumen I was able to achieve by simply having an hour or so to talk to top executives of the company. Most of them had technical background and transitioned to business from their engineering career and that is what I want to do somewhere down the road. They are truly inspirational role models.

What’s your biggest accomplishment during your internship? What are you most proud of?

My biggest accomplishment is that I was able to implement a feature that laid the groundwork for so many other features. I made it general enough so that others may build on top of my project. I was able to open the door to a whole new realm of possibilities and dramatically add value to the company.

What have you learned from your projects, your mentor, your team, and/or AppDynamics?

I’ve developed technical skills like byte code injection, and also gained valuable insight about the company and the industry. One simple lunch with the Chief Customer Success Officer opened my eyes about the future of APM and how AppDynamics is literally changing the definition of APM. My mentor also gives me priceless advices about career paths, and how I can further my skills after my internship. He is a true champion in my life.

If you could go back in time to Day 1 of this internship, what advice would you give yourself and why?

My advice would be to not be afraid to ask. On my first day, I was so determined to prove myself (and not sound dumb) that I dismissed any help offered, and ended up spending two days wandering around the code base aimlessly. Not knowing where to start, I finally summoned up my courage to ask my mentor. He dedicated an hour to deep dive into the codebase to show me its structure and how to navigate the codebase faster and more efficiently.

Nicholas Turley

What did you choose to highlight in your demo presentation?

In my demo presentation, I chose to highlight the improvements I made to the crash processor (my first “intern project”). I explained the algorithm I developed, as well as some of the key technical challenges I faced. I also summarized some of my work from later in the summer, which included investigating the Xamarin technology, developing a byte code injection prototype, and completing miscellaneous “tickets” from our issue tracking system. I concluded the presentation by outlining my three favorite parts of the internship: the product (go Application Intelligence!), the people (go AppDynamos!), and the place (go San Francisco!).

What’s your biggest accomplishment during your internship? What are you most proud of?

The code I wrote to improve our crash processor feels like a big accomplishment. It integrates with a large, sophisticated code base and will soon ship and become a part of the actual End User Monitoring product. I am also very proud of the work I did to demo advanced bytecode injection techniques. Although I had to overcome a number of technical obstacles, I was able to complete a working and well-documented prototype that I hope will be useful to my team.

What have you learned from your projects, your mentor, your team, and/or AppDynamics?

It is hard to summarize the vast number of things I learned at AppDynamics, but here are some examples. From my projects, I learned how to write more efficient, extensible and well-documented code in Java. From my mentor, I learned the importance of systematically evaluating (and documenting) different solutions to a problem before even starting to write code. From my team, I learned how a collaborative spirit improves everyone’s productivity and happiness. And from AppDynamics leadership, I learned the significance of constant internal process optimization (both on the technical and the organizational side) when scaling a company of this size and potential.

If you could go back in time to Day 1 of this internship, what advice would you give yourself and why?

If I could go back to Day 1, I would encourage myself to be a bit less shy and ask as many questions as possible. Everyone at AppDynamics is so happy to share their knowledge and point colleagues in the right direction.

The lessons our interns will take away from their time at AppDynamics are invaluable. They all hoped to learn and develop specific skills, but instead came away with much more than just improved technical capacity. They each gained a new level of self-confidence in their abilities and developed crucial relationships with mentors that will continue well past their internship program.  And that is precisely what we aim for all of our interns — to help formulate their career paths as future fresh graduates and provide them with the resources necessary to boldly make their next step.  

Students to Engineers: A Peak Into Their Summer (Part 2)

The purpose of our internship program at AppDynamics is to facilitate student learning opportunities outside of the classroom, allowing students to apply classroom theories to “real world” situations. Our mentors not only teach our interns, they also provide career guidance for their professional futures, enhancing academic and career goals. Every internship is structured differently, depending on the Engineering team, as we want to provide our interns with the curriculum they wish to experience. Supplementary work is also assigned based on what is deemed the most beneficial in expanding our interns’ knowledge in their respective fields–whether it’s reading assignments, coffee chats, or smaller side projects. Mentors choose our interns’ main project, based on their interests, in which they focus on for the entire summer. Weekly check-ins with our interns help them identify for themselves their obstacles, milestones and accomplishments. At the end of their internship, we showcase and celebrate their months of hard work. Let’s now take a sneak peak into what our interns have been working on!

Check out Part 1 of our Intern series!

Alana Anderson

Now that you’re half-way through the internship, what progress have you made in your project?

I’m approaching the exciting milestone of shipping my first product! The inbound work of scoping, design, and engineering for the sample application are just about done. I’m now entering the realm of outbound product management. I’ve organized a user testing event with 20 AppDynamos from DevOps, Product, and Marketing to get feedback on the sample application before it goes live. I also get to work with our incredible Sales and Marketing teams to manage promotions and to drive conversions.

What other projects are you working on?

I’ve been extremely lucky to have mentors outside of my team who have trusted me with their products. The PM for AppDynamics’ End-User Monitoring product, Ian Withrow, has tasked me with scoping a new feature for Browser RUM. I’ve love the challenge of working with an extremely technical part of the product and speaking with customers to help shape my requirements. I’ve also dove into a few projects on my own – stay tuned for that in the next blog post!

What struggles or problems have you encountered with your project?

In the first month of my internship, my work was pretty engineering heavy. I was working a lot with languages and frameworks I hadn’t been exposed to before. Learning new technologies for leisure is a ton of fun, but when you’re time-pressed with delivering a fully functioning product on a deadline, it can be stressful. I am lucky that I’ve built a strong network of mentors here who encourage and support me through my frustrations.

What’s the coolest technology you’ve worked with so far?

We Dockerized the sample application so that the entire thing can be spun up in a virtual container in just a few minutes! Docker is an amazing emerging technology that I think will be very important in the years to come.

What do you enjoy the most about your team?

The Product Management team is incredible. What I respect most is the team’s ability to envision and discover new products and features while simultaneously driving progress on executing and improving current projects. I can’t imagine a more creative, committed, or candid group of people to #ship-it with!

Haojun Li

Now that you’re half-way through the internship, what progress have you made in your project?

My project is mostly done. I’ve enabled users to gain more insight to their applications on runtime and laid the foundation for future implementations. I am adding tests and making sure everything runs smoothly.

What other projects are you working on?

I’m also working on refactoring and reducing tech debts. Since byte code injection is really hard to test, I’m figuring out a way to dynamically transform and load classes in test environments. This framework would lay the foundation for all future byte code injection testing.

What struggles or problems have you encountered with your project?

I have encountered both technical and design problems. One of which is the vast range of knowledge required for the project. I’ve not only learned byte code and JVM structure from scratch, but also learned how the company code is structured so I can build on top of that. Sometimes there are trade offs that I have to make between memory/storage and runtime. My team is really helpful during these processes, and will even call in team meetings to discuss these design choices. With the help of my team, I was quickly unblocked and fast tracked to solve issues.

What’s the coolest technology you’ve worked with so far at AppDynamics?

I worked with the ASM library, which is a java byte code injection library. They provide APIs for byte code transformation and generation, and is fairly simple to use and extremely powerful.

What do you enjoy the most about your team?

What I enjoy the most about my team at AppDynamics is the team dynamics (pun!) we have. When I ask any of my team members a question, they would stop whatever they were working on to help me figure it out. I truly feel like I am a valued member and I’m so proud to have a supportive team.

Nicholas Turley

Now that you’re half-way through the internship, what progress have you made in your project?

My work on mobile crash processing is finished for now. I successfully improved the way our mobile crash processor in the cloud handles certain new types of crashes for Android and iOS.

What other projects are you working on?

Since finishing the work on the crash processor, I have split my time between an investigative research-type task and other miscellaneous tasks. My research-type task is to investigate the effort and technologies involved with supporting Xamarin for mobile End User Monitoring. Xamarin is a way of developing apps on Android and iOS using a single language (C#). My other tasks have included various improvements related to opening tickets in our issue tracking system.

What struggles or problems have you encountered with your project, and how did you solve these problems?

One challenge that I encountered — both with my earlier work on crash processing, and with my recent research tasks — was to accumulate in-depth knowledge about the technologies we are supporting. To produce a product like mobile End User Monitoring, it is not enough to merely know how to write an app on the Android, iOS or Xamarin platform. You need a deep understanding of how these technologies work on the inside. While I still have a lot to learn, I came a long way by doing extensive research and asking various people on my team pointed questions.

What’s the coolest technology you’ve worked with so far at AppDynamics?

I’ve gotten to work with so many cool technologies, but I’d say the concept of bytecode injection was particularly intriguing. The technology is so powerful and I have never come across it in school.

What do you enjoy the most about your team?

I enjoy getting to know my team members. Everyone is fun to be around, and we have had some great conversations. In fact, my team and other AppDynamos I’ve talked with have offered me valuable advice about both technical topics and life after college.

Stay tuned for our next Intern Series blog piece to say goodbye to our interns!

From Students to Engineers: Meeting the AppDynamics Interns (Part 1)

Textbooks have been abandoned and summer is in full force. School is out, and that means we’re welcoming new faces as part of our summer internship program! AppDynamics is growing, and we’re always searching for the brightest to help us build great products! Our top priority is to provide direction for each of our student engineers by giving them a focused project to work on as they progress through summer. Interns are paired with engineering mentors who support them on a regular basis with feedback, best practices, and act as experts on the technologies each intern is working with to guide them through the 12-week program.

Just like any member of our team, interns are given the same standards and deadlines to uphold. They’re responsible for the ownership of their project, the quality of their code, and guess what? Their final creations become actual features and products that we ship because it’s important to AppDynamics that the work our interns do have a lasting impact even after the summer is over. It’s more than just a “real world work experience.” It’s about learning what it means to be an engineer. As we continue to build and grow talent, follow along our interns’ journey this summer through our intern summer series.

Alana Anderson

School: Claremont Colleges

Major: Management Engineering

Why did you pick your major/area of expertise?

Originally pre-med, I fell in love with computing and technology when I moved to the Bay Area two years ago. I became fascinated with the ability of a few lines of code to perform incredible tasks.

What projects are you currently working on, and what is the most challenging part?

[I’m currently working on] upcoming product releases that involve self-service so users have multiple ways to interact with our product. My role within this project is to build a Java/Node/Database application that users can pull from GitHub, or build with Docker. As a Product Manager Intern, I’m lucky to be able to work cross-functionally with design, documentation, marketing, sales, engineering, and customer success to ensure a positive experience end-to-end.

What skills do you want to gain from your internship and why?

My goal is to understand product management and learn what skills, intuition, and qualities make an effective Product Manager.

Why did you want to intern at AppDynamics?

AppDynamics has the unique quality of feeling like a startup, but operating and executing like an established tech giant–this initially drew me to applying for an internship. After speaking with my managers Mark Prichard and Jennifer Li and recruiter, Heidi Newiger, I immediately knew that AppDynamics would be the right fit.

Haojun Li

School: University of California, Berkeley

Major: Computer Science and Statistics

Why did you pick your major/area of expertise?

I picked CS+STAT because I found my passion in gaining knowledge, and both majors are the perfect combination that enables me to do so. Sometimes on a Friday night, I’ll pick a widely debated issue and find data to do some analysis. Knowing both CS and statistics allows me to quickly analyze the data and sometimes even come up with my own predictions. This not only adds factual evidences to the debated issue at hand, but also helps me understand social issues better.

What projects are you currently working on, and what is the most challenging part?

I’m currently working on injecting byte code into the middle of a method so the agent can get a snapshot of all the local variables and the state of all the variables left on the stack. This is a potential place for a data collector, or at least it would be a useful tool for developers to support new frameworks.

What skills do you want to gain from your internship and why?

I want to know how back-end frameworks are structured, and how AppDynamics is able to quickly support a new or updated framework. I would also like to learn how to code smart and the rationales behind code design decisions.

Why did you want to intern at AppDynamics?

I wanted to learn more about apps, whether they are mobile or web-based, and I wanted to get a wider and deeper understanding on frameworks used. AppDynamics’ APM team supports so many frameworks, and since I need to understand the structures and sometimes even byte codes to support these structures, it encourages me to understand the frameworks on a deeper level.

Nicholas Turley

School: Brown University

Major: Computer Science and Philosophy

Why did you pick your major/area of expertise?

I came into college thinking I might study philosophy, not knowing much about computer science. After taking Intro to Object-Oriented-Programming and Computer Science during my freshman year, I was hooked. I found that both computer science and philosophy helped me attack hard problems in a precise, structured way – in one case through code, in the other case through language.

What projects are you currently working on, and what is the most challenging part?

So far, I have been working on improving the way crash reporting works for mobile applications. I had little prior experience with mobile development, so getting up to speed quickly was a fun challenge.

What skills/knowledge do you want to gain from your internship and why?

On a technical level, I look forward to gaining real world software engineering experience, and learning how some of the technologies and languages I have been using work “under the hood.” On a more general level, I am excited to learn about the technologies and organizational mechanisms that have allowed the engineering team to simultaneously sustain high quality and growth.

Why did you want to intern at AppDynamics?

I knew I wanted to intern at an energetic, high-growth startup. The environment at AppDynamics offers unlimited learning opportunities and the chance to work on cutting edge engineering problems. I was also drawn to AppDynamics because it has a really cool mission to help businesses transform digitally, by giving them visibility into their applications. It is incredibly exciting to be a part of that as an intern.

Follow our interns through their summer with AppDynamics by tuning into our Intern blog series! 

Spotlight: Women of AppDynamics

Welcome back to our Women of AppDynamics series, our showcase of the female talent at AppDynamics. Here, we celebrate the women who serve as both architects for modern technology and role models to all young women. What is it really like to be a woman in tech? Is it possible to achieve success without being pegged as “too aggressive?” In our recent When She Speaks: Women in Leadership meetup, our panelists encouraged us to be courageous enough to first know then speak your mind with clarity, to be strong and open enough to learn how others respond to you, and to coach and support others around you to do the same.

Each of our panelists reflected these admirable brand traits:

  • A results orientated mindset
  • A strong, centered, perseverance that can move mountains
  • An authentic, trustworthy, passionate communicator
  • A courageous, curious, learning-agile, and humble leader-under-development
  • An others-centric mentality which makes them great listeners and communicators

When She Speaks: Women in Leadership: (L to R) Linda Holroyd – CEO FountainBlue, Nandini Ramani – VP Engineering Twitter, Steph Douglass – VP People & Culture OpenTable, Gwen Tillman – Head of People Development AppDynamics, Shannon Eis – VP Corporate Communications Yelp

 

Taking the time to learn how you’d like to be perceived, and also the strength and curiosity to understand how you’re showing up and how you’re perceived by others are fundamental to successfully establishing your professional brand. Surrounding ourselves with a support network, a ‘board of directors’ that would help us succeed – ranging from mentors, friends and colleagues who will support us unconditionally and to help us keep true to ourselves. Please welcome our next three incredible female leaders who have developed their own very different brands and established themselves as key players in tech. From PR to Recruiting, to our engineers, each contribute in establishing AppDynamics as a leader in the APM field. PR puts our company on the map to drive recognition and sales, while Recruiting helps us hire the top engineers that build our products.

The Communications Catalyst: Laura Spaventa – Senior PR Manager

Q: What do you do as the Senior PR Manager?

A: I work with stakeholders throughout the company to get the word out about AppDynamics through various formats— product news, customer stories, press releases, media placements, thought leadership pieces, etc. Essentially, the communications team is the mouthpiece for the company and we work to give the public/potential customers perspective on what AppDynamics does and why they should care.

Q: What is your proudest accomplishment at AppDynamics?

A: Last quarter I won a Q4 Top Performer Award and a spot on Club. It’s always an honor to be recognized in front of peers, especially at a company like AppDynamics. However, I had overcome several challenging obstacles that quarter, so it made the moment all the more sweet and was a lesson in perseverance.

Q: What excites you about working at AppDynamics?

A: Hands down, the customers. From day one at AppDynamics, I’ve been amazed by how passionate our customers are about AppDynamics’ platform. I work closely with our sales team to share our customer stories, and not only is it exciting to work with some of the top brands in the world, but it is so impressive to hear how big of an impact our platform has had on these companies and their businesses.

Q: What advice do you have for young women who want to pursue a career in tech?

A: It won’t be easy. Tech is still an evolving field and you will run up against situations that will challenge you personally and professionally. One of my former managers told me a Steve Martin quote that has stuck with me— “Be so good they can’t ignore you.” I think it’s important for women in tech (and people in general) to make this their mantra. Keep your head up, keep working hard, and block out the distractions. Your work will always speak volumes and no one can take that away from you.

The Knowledge Sponge: Yoko Li – Software Engineer

Q: What were you doing before you worked at AppDynamics?

A: I just graduated from Rice in May 2015.

Q: What is a typical day at work like for you?

A: Get in the office in the morning, standup meeting, code a bit and then go for lunch with my team. Take a nap after lunch and enjoy a block of focused coding time.

Q: What is something you recently learned that’s really cool or interesting?

A: Three JS! Building 3D UI in js is very interesting to me.

Q: What is your proudest accomplishment?

A: Learning new things every day.

Q: What do you think is the biggest misconception about working in tech?

A: Tech is all about computer science — not true. I found that you don’t necessarily need a CS background to develop awesome features, but the skills I learned at school come in handy for solving various problems.

 

 

The Trailblazing Go-Getter: Heidi Newiger – University & Diversity Programs Manager

Q: What do you do in your role?

A: I have a few main responsibilities – first: university recruitment (finding and recruiting interns and fresh grads to the company, and making sure their experience here is full of learning and fun); pretty standard sourcing and recruitment role coupled with employer branding. Second: diversity programs – namely, Women in Technology and Pride in Technology. For these, I try to build a safe community for folks to network and engage with, and provide events that will be interactive, educational and enjoyable.

Q: What initially interested you in this field and how did you get here? Explain.

A: I honestly kind of fell into recruitment. My first job out of college was at a small start up where I was a jack of many trades, one of which was recruitment coordination. When I got to AppDynamics as a coordinator and sourcer, the UR position became available, so I asked if I could take that on in addition to my other roles, and instead, I was able to focus just on University programs. Same thing with Diversity Programs…I have always been passionate about bringing people together and building things, so I just kind of made up work and did stuff until people looked to me as the point person. I find if you’re passionate and proactive about something, and go after it, your hard work will end up paying off.

Q: What excites you about working at AppDynamics?

A: Gosh, cheesily, so many things! The people are definitely my first thought–there are so many smart, passionate, motivated, and just good people here, the make work fun and exciting. Another huge factor is the support these wonderful people give. Was I qualified for any of the job I got when I started it, maybe (probably not – mostly stubborn with a lot of determination), but people believed in me, encouraged me, and supported me. Finally, I love how people recognize and value each other’s hard work and communicate their appreciation for it. It’s not even just managers or leads, individual contributors really care about one another, which goes a long way.

Q: What advice do you have for young women who want to pursue a career in tech?

A: DO IT!! But, only do it if you’re passionate about it (not for the money). It will be hard, but if you want it, you can do it. No matter what career path you choose, make sure that you are choosing it for the right reasons, because you spend a lot of time working. Confucius said it best – “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.”

Spotlight: Women of AppDynamics

Welcome to our Women of AppDynamics series, a bimonthly showcase of the female talent at AppDynamics. While the likes of Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg are the icons of a male dominated tech industry, women are rapidly entering high-level tech positions. However, the number of female new graduates with a Computer Science degree is not quite reflected in the number of females entering the workforce every year. As many blame the lack of talent going through the pipeline, it is actually a little more complicated than that. Female new graduates are more likely to be discouraged from applying to certain positions because of gender bias on job descriptions (masculine or feminine-leaning words that subconsciously affect the neutrality of the advert). Many women end up applying for non-technical roles that they feel more comfortable with, and it is up to hiring managers and recruiters to take the extra step to reevaluate job postings and source beyond college majors. Women are also leaving the tech industry faster than they are being replaced because of their working conditions– the lack of opportunity for career progression and the tipping of work-life balance. It is the company’s responsibility to work on retaining women in tech and creating a female-friendly work environment that encourages women to excel. At AppDynamics, we are building ourselves towards that goal. Please welcome our next three incredibly bold female AppDynamos!

 

The Code Wanderer: Nina Yang – Software Engineer

Q: What do you do in your role?

A: I’m a software engineer on the Server and Infrastructure Monitoring team. Our Machine Agent provides visibility into servers—machine resources, processes, and more.

Q: What initially interested you in this field and how did you get here? Explain.

A: My dad is a software engineer, so I like to joke that it’s in my blood. But I declared a Computer Science major in college (at MIT) and never looked back. I found myself able to get lost in my code for hours, throwing everything I had at it to solve the problem. To me, that was a sign that I had chosen the correct field. After many grueling classes and a few internships, I chose AppDynamics to start my career because of the product and the people here.

Q: What is your proudest accomplishment at AppDynamics?

A: I wrote a big part of the code for our new Windows Machine Agent. It required learning a lot about different parts of a server, wrestling with windows scripts, and writing modular and maintainable code that will make it easy to expand off of in the future. It’s a very exciting (and, not going to lie, extremely nerve-wracking!) feeling knowing that it’ll be deployed on thousands of our customers’ machines.

Q: What is a typical day at work like for you?

A: I’ll come into the office and head immediately to the kitchen for coffee/tea/snacks. We have team standup at 10:30, and my team goes out to lunch together pretty much every day. Sometimes I’ll have a meeting or two (sprint planning, design meetings, or informational meetings) and the rest of the time I’ll be at my desk working or in that area collaborating with team members. Occasionally I’ll curl up in these super comfy chairs we have and ignore the rest of the world and code. On Fridays, my team usually grabs drinks at the end of the day, which is always a nice way to end the week.

 

The Stealth Doctor: Jing Hou – Senior Software Engineer

Q: What do you do in your role?

A: I am a senior software engineer in End User Experience team. I contribute to build robust, high performance, high scalable backend servers, add new features to mobile application monitoring, crash report analysis, package management and etc. I also help to ensure our SaaS cloud system is healthy and running smoothly.

Q: What excites you about working at AppDynamics?

A: AppDynamics is a fast growing start-up company with a lot of innovations and great business potentials, and I am a part of that!

Q: What is your proudest accomplishment at AppDynamics?

A: I created a crash process server in the first 10 days after I joined.

Q: What is the biggest misconception about working in tech?

A: That you always need to work long hours and that it’s very stressful. But at AppDynamics, we have a very good work-life balance.

 

The Gamer Girl: Swetha Ravichandran – Software Engineer

Q: What do you do in your role?

A: I am a member of .NET Agent team and I have been with the team for a month now. Right now, I work in automation.

Q: What initially interested you in this field and how did you get here? Explain.

A: My interest in computers sparked from playing a lot of video games. Once I found out that they are made out of code, I wanted to develop one of them. After that, I just loved solving problems and puzzles.

Q: What do you think is the biggest misconception about working in tech?

A: A lot of people have asked me, how do you sit in front of computers all day, do you have time for personal life? I don’t think that’s how my life is. I enjoy working with computers and I have a perfect work-life balance.

Q: What excites you about working at AppDynamics?

A: Cool products! Lots of new opportunities! I recently moved to the .NET Agent team. It’s exciting to work on a core team. I have also participated in Hackathon with the UI team. It was fun to work on cool features with a different team.

 

 

Spotlight: Women of AppDynamics

With the tech industry growing at its remarkable pace, it justifiably comes with a concentrated talent pool including some of the world’s brightest innovators and game changers. Diversity and inclusion efforts has become, more than ever, a prioritized mission for every technology company. AppDynamics increased our female hires by 40% this year alone. While we’re not yet a company made of equal parts men and women, we’re moving in the right direction. Today, we are kicking off our own series in light of #ILookLikeAnEngineer to celebrate the women of AppDynamics who have broken through the glass ceiling, serving as both architects for modern technology and role models to all young women who will continue to follow their dreams and say yes to STEM education and careers. We’ve rounded up our first three incredibly bold female masterminds of AppDynamics to share their experiences with us.

The Genie: Mindy Pile – Software Engineer1009476_10153077972855291_1102361024_o.jpg

Q: What do you do in your role?

A: I work on code to help develop a portion of our company’s product. Mostly, I add features that have been requested by our customers that help make the product more useful.

Q: What were you doing before you worked at AppDynamics?

A: I was studying Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University.

Q: What is something cool you recently worked on at AppDynamics?

A: Right now, I’m adding a feature that requires me to touch almost every part of the product, from back to front, and it’s giving me a real sense of how the product works. I think it’s really cool that, in the future, I’ll be able to point to this feature and say, “I added this part myself.”

Q: What do you think is the biggest misconception about working in tech?

A: I think the biggest misconception is about the type of people who work in tech. When I tell someone what I do, most people respond with surprise. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard something to the effect of “Wow, you don’t seem like most software engineers.” And while part of that is because I’m a women, I think people think of programmers as these antisocial geeks who can’t handle normal interaction. And while it’s funny to laugh at the stereotype, it is just a stereotype, and not one that applies to most programmers I know.

The Usability Pro: Stephanie Chou – Software Engineer

Q: What do you do in your role?

A: I am a member of the UI team. I create the parts of the product that people see and interact with.

Q: What excites you about working at AppDynamics?

A: [We recently participated in] a hackathon. That was exciting! It was great because our team had a really cool idea to track end user click paths through the UI. It is super useful for Product Managers or Engineers to know what users are doing and if a bug was triggered or an error appears, then we’d know how to replicate it. I also got to learn how to use canvas and create awesome little bubble animations. Our team stayed up at the office until 1 am working on it.

Q: What initially interested you in this field and how did you get here? Explain.

A: I started by getting a degree in Electrical Engineering. One day I was sitting in a class about Green Energy and Power, and I decided to check if stephaniechou.com was an available domain name. It was! So I pull out my credit card in the middle of class and I bought it. From there, it was a lot of exploration.

Q: What advice do you have for young women who want to pursue a career in tech?

A: Just go for it! You don’t need to have perfect grades. You don’t need to be all prepared and know how to code. You don’t need to have all your confidence and know everything yet. Keep looking for what interests you. Tech is a big world and it overlaps with almost any interest you can think of.

 

The SoMa Adventurer: Swathi Bhat – Software Engineer

Q: How long have you been with AppDynamics?

A: I’ve only been here a little more than two months but I’ve already shipped multiple features for our products. I was also part of the first Hackathon at AppDynamics. My team worked on building a code search tool that we presented at the open demos. Oh! I’m also going to Grace Hopper Conference this year!

Q: What is a typical day at work like for you?

A: I take the train from South Bay so I catch up on e-mail and work/read on the train. At AppDynamics we organize ourselves into small teams of 6-8 people. We use common tools across the teams for collaboration, bug-tracking and code-reviews. Mornings start with stand-ups, prioritizing tasks, code-reviews etc. My team and I love to venture out and try the various restaurants around SoMa for lunch. Post-lunch the day is usually interspersed with meetings and coding. The environment is friendly and getting pulled into impromptu conversations is a norm since my team sits around me.

Q: What advice do you have for young women who want to pursue a career in tech?

A: The technology industry can be challenging but it has its perks–flexible hours, ability to work from anywhere and the fact that it is very result oriented keeps meritocracy from being subjective. Focus on being the best that you can possibly be at what you do.

Q: What do you think is the biggest misconception about working in tech?

A: I have had a lot of people tell me that when they think of someone working in the technology field they imagine a geek sitting for hours in front of the computer typing away to glory. With my experience so far, I can tell you that the reality is far from it. Computer science is about problem solving, the ability to have a different kind of imagination, to think analytically and so much more.

A new addition to the AppDynamics family

Earlier today we announced to the company and in a press release an exciting new stage in the growth of AppDynamics. We have brought on David Wadhwani as CEO while I take on a new role of Executive Chairman and Chief Strategist. With David as my partner focused on scaling the company, I will focus on driving the company’s strategy and innovation agenda as we expand into new categories and work to establish AppDynamics as the next great software company. David brings a wealth of experience in operational excellence at scale, and I couldn’t have asked for a better partner to help shape this next phase of our journey. As David focuses on scaling the company, I will continue to lead the company’s vision, strategy and innovation as Founder, Executive Chairman and Chief Strategist.Jyoti_David_AppDynamics

I started AppDynamics in my apartment back in 2008 as a 29-year-old software engineer, with the vision that the whole world is eventually going to run on software and someone will need to ensure that this new software-defined world operates flawlessly, all the time. With the trust and support of our customers, employees, and partners, we have come a long way in fulfilling that vision. We now have nearly 850 employees and approximately 1,600 customers. With a strong and proven technology foundation, we have positioned ourselves as a leader in this very large and rapidly growing addressable market.

In addition to all our success in the market, I take a lot of pride in the culture we have built. Culture is like the heartbeat of our company and ensures that while we continue to grow, we maintain our integrity, we remain a great place to work, our employees are happy and successful, and our customers are happy and successful. We take great pride in our customer satisfaction, our strong company culture as evidenced by the fact that 85% of employees on Glassdoor are willing to refer AppDynamics to their friends.

But while we have come a long way, we have a long road ahead of us. We believe that we have a much bigger role to play in the emergence of Application Intelligence as a key ingredient in the increasingly software-defined world. Every business process, every consumer interaction, and pretty much every thing we do in our lives is now powered by software apps, and with AppDynamics Application Intelligence, customers can embark on their digital transformation journey with more confidence. In order to be that trusted partner, we will have to continue to expand our products and grow our routes to market while seamlessly scaling every aspect of our business. And that’s where, with great pleasure, I welcome David to the party.

With David as my partner in the CEO role focused on scaling the company, I feel very confident that we are well positioned to continue on this adventure together for years to come.

As David orients himself with our business over the coming weeks he will be reaching out to many of you, our customers and partners, to rapidly familiarize himself with your businesses and how AppDynamics can continue to serve and help you realize your business objectives.

Please join me in welcoming David to the AppDynamics family!

– Jyoti

AppDynamics Kicks Off Its First Ever 48-Hour Hackathon

Hackathon: A hackathon, also known as a codefest, is a social coding event that brings computer programmers and other interested people together to improve upon or build a new software program (TechTarget).

This month, over one hundred employees piled into conference rooms and meeting areas to participate in AppDynamics first ever internal Hackathon. The 48-hour event kicked off in the San Francisco headquarters, with a total of 115 participants primarily from the R&D org, the portal team, and technical field team.

A long time goal for AppDynamics Founder and CEO, Jyoti Bansal, the event drew an overwhelming turnout. Thanks to a stellar team of planners, consisting of HR Business Partner, Engineering, Madhu Jadhav, Director of Engineering, Andy Buteau, Director of Engineering Operations, Rajpal Sodhi, and Head of University Recruitment, Heidi Newiger, the event was nothing short of an absolute success.

Coders of all levels were encouraged to join and register with both a team and an idea. The concept of the event was to get the entire company involved to try and come up with new and interesting ideas. “There is a lot of pent-up innovation at AppDynamics! Opportunities like this give engineers a chance to get time to do it,” said Buteau.

The event was an opportunity to strengthen team bonding, reward, and foster innovation among our engineer organization and increase cross-team collaboration. Participants had the chance to get to know and work with fellow engineers all while taking pride in the accomplishment of doing something creative, innovative, and fun. “It’s an awesome way for engineers to turn their great ideas into something real.  There’s a great chance one of the hacks will turn into a monetizable project,” states Buteau.

Headquarters was buzzing with energy during the two-day event, due to the majority of employees being based in SF. Red bulls, pizza boxes and snacks filled the kitchen, as many teams stayed long hours into the night to hack away. Multiple prizes were given out for various challenges but first prize winners were given Restricted Stock Units (RSUs).

The Hackathon resulted in incredible collaboration and positive feedback. The turnout for both signups and demos more than doubled what they initially planned for, with 50+ signups consisting of 120+ engineers and more than 35 demos presented at the end.  Due to its immense success, there is no doubt that another Hackathon is on its way in the future!

Thank you to all the organizers and participants and congratulations our winners:

  • First Place: Scalable Search – Abhi Sharma, Puneet Anand, Akshay Phadke
  • Second Place: Fix Java Code – Vinay Srini, Anthony Kilman, Aaron Steinfeld, Suraj Puvvada
  • Third Place: Flowmap Recycled – Dhairyashil Padalkar, Vinay Gangoli, Divyanshu Mittal, Yoko Li

Devs Read Mean App Reviews [VIDEO]

For mobile app developers, their app’s rating is the only metric that matters. In no other industry is your work graded with such a public display that directly relates to your future success. Imagine if restaurants had to display their Yelp and reviews on their front door. 

This is why we decided to parody Jimmy Kimmel’s Celebs Read Mean Tweets with our own version of Devs Read Mean App Reviews. All the reviews in the video are real reviews taken from the App Store. Hopefully next time these companies decide to make a better decision and choose AppDynamics. 

Interested to see how developers can gain more insight into their user experience? Read our free ebook Top 5 Mobile APM Myths.