My First Year at Kenzan

In January 2019, I joined Kenzan, at the Guadalajara office, as a Software Developer. I was excited at the prospect of being part of a passionate community of technologists with a focus on cloud native microservices, and ready to contribute to projects to the best of my ability. Before working for Kenzan I had already been in the industry for 7 years in both Guadalajara and Mexico city, learning a lot of enterprise software development. Also, I had the opportunity to collaborate with local and online communities as writer, speaker and organizer along these years.

This month, I’m celebrating my first year at the company. So far, my experience has been rewarding. Some of the things I really like about working here obviously relate to technology, but I also love the culture. Kenzan has amazing technology and bright individuals that go hand-in-hand with a cool and friendly environment.

I came up with the idea of writing this blog post to highlight all the things that stood out for me in my first year. Here’s what I came up with.

Support of cloud and open source projects

Kenzan supports CNCF as a silver partner, we are strong proponents of Serverless architecture (where it makes sense), and have helped maintain Spinnaker. Not to mention that we host monthly meetups at all our offices around the U.S. and Mexico, where we speak about new and evolving cloud technologies to our community.

Kenzanites tend to be very passionate and driven when it comes to technologies, architectures and patterns. It’s not unusual to see a coworker collaborate on an eBook, an open source project, or give a talk at a conference.

I myself lead the Kenzan meetup in Guadalajara, Mexico. In addition to giving local talks, I had the opportunity to give a couple meetup talks in the U.S. last year: one on how to create Spring Webflux applications in Java and another on running Spring Boot applications in Kubernetes. Both meetup talks were in different parts of the country and sponsored by Kenzan. It was an amazing and enriching experience that allowed me to share with developers beyond my local community. I also felt like I grew as a technical speaker.

My meetup talk on running Spring boot applications in Kubernetes at Rackspace in San Antonio, Tx

State of the art technology stack

Kenzan offers digital transformation to its clients through agile engineering. We not only help companies build their microservices architecture but continuously evolve to use the latest architectures, patterns and tools that are best suited to our client’s scenario. The philosophy of welcoming innovation allows our developers to always experiment with state of the art technology stacks.

Tech stacks do vary depending on the project you are assigned to. In my case, it’s been exciting to be involved with building a Java Cloud Native microservices ecosystem for a huge telecom client that is migrating their legacy infrastructure to Kubernetes. Kenzan is also helping the client implement Agile frameworks like SaFe and grow a DevOps culture in their teams.

Talented engineers

Since the first few interviews, I’ve been continually impressed with the technical aptitude of my coworkers. I’ve had the opportunity to work with some of the most talented architects and engineers I’ve met. They initiate thoughtful and smart implementations in both platform and software development.

As a result, I’m constantly challenged to learn new patterns and technologies to rise to their level. I’m now helping with more nuanced implementations that provide better results for things like performance and code readability.

I’ve worked shoulder-to-shoulder with my Guadalajara peers and also worked closely with my U.S. peers, remotely and in person. Kenzan encourages personal and effective interaction between their employees. A group of my peers from Guadalajara and myself had the opportunity to visit Kenzan Denver office, where we participated in a 2 day planning session and helped our client team with technical details on the implementations needed for our project. Everyone was kind and welcoming and made us feel at home during our stay.

Guadalajara team visiting Kenzan Denver office

Culture

The everyday culture at Kenzan is pretty amazing. Everyone here is so nice and willing to help each other, which makes a proper environment for collaboration and innovation. This is a company that actually cares about their employees. They ensure the best work conditions, growth opportunities and learning support. They are also very forward with maintaining a safe, inclusive and respectful space for diversity.

I’m really proud to have volunteered as a member of Kenzan’s Diversity and Inclusion committee. We help plan and execute strategies for the company to improve the overall employee experience. As part of a team effort with Technovation challenge and TechQuiero (a local woman’s techcommunity), we were able to provide free Java training to a group of women in Guadalajara. It was great to be able to lend this kind of support to a community effort aimed at equality in our industry.

Graduation party of our free Java training for women

Overall, it has been an amazing year at Kenzan. I’m looking forward to growing here as technical projects continue to challenge me and relationships give meaningful purpose alongside the work.

About Chuck

Chuck is a Sr. Software Engineer and Practice Lead at Kenzan where he develops Microservices applications for clients’ projects and helps the company adopt best practices in order to improve Kenzan’s technology and solutions offerings. Also, he leads the Guadalajara Kenzan meetup and frequently talks at technology conferences.

About Technovation

“Technovation is a global tech education nonprofit that empowers girls and families to become leaders, creators and problem-solvers. We offer two programs — Technovation Girls and Technovation Families — which bring kids and adults together to solve big problems in their communities.”

About TechQuiero

“TechQuiero is envisioned and organized by women, for women, and/or all those people who would like to see the Tech world with a more feminine approach.”

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