A Developing Tech Career: From Kiev to Dublin

Dmitry has lived in Ireland for almost two decades, but the location wasn’t even on his radar when he first decided to leave his native Ukraine to develop his tech career. “Originally, I had wanted to go to the US, and I hadn’t even considered Ireland,” he says. “When the opportunity came up for a job in a small company in Limerick, I decided to try it. That was back in 1999.” He hasn’t looked back since.

The initial move over was relatively seamless. “Obviously, the language proved challenging when I first moved over, but in terms of culture I really didn’t see as much of a difference as I thought I would,” he explains. He found Limerick to be a welcoming place, and soon moved his family over but eventually the family decided to move to a larger city. “In comparison to Kiev, Limerick was quite small. So, I found a new tech job with a major insurance company and we moved to Dublin.”

Growing with Globoforce 

After a few years in Ireland’s capital city, Dmitry secured a position at Globoforce, then a relatively young company, and has progressed through a variety of roles to his current position as Director of Engineering. “My role has changed a lot over the 12 years I’ve been here,” he says, “and what’s kept me here is an interest in positions that could develop me.”

Over his time in Globoforce, Dmitry has witnessed a lot of change, but the company’s rapid growth hasn’t affected its overall culture. “It’s a great company,” he says. “It’s grown from pretty much 10 people to, I think, around 500 now. When I started I knew almost everyone who worked here but over the past few years it’s grown so rapidly that there are new faces all the time, but there’s a great culture here and regular social events to get to know people.”

Globoforce develops software which aims to improve workplace cultures through the principle of social recognition and this aspect of the work gives Dmitry great satisfaction. “It empowers people to reward others they work with and they know if they do something good they’ll be recognized too,” he notes. “Knowing the work that you’re doing is contributing to someone else’s happiness is the best thing about it.”

A Strategic View  

In his role as Director of Engineering, Dmitry has responsibility for a number of different development teams, something which he enjoys after years working as a developer himself. “The teams are relatively independent,” he says. “They have their own areas of responsibility, but they have a lot of freedom in development and decision-making. My job is to make sure that communication happens between the teams and that delivery is on time. And if any problems happen then I intervene and try to solve it in the best possible manner.”

His time in the trenches has given him a good insight into the day-to-day work of the developers, something which helps inform his overall approach to the role. “I know the software development lifecycle pretty well,” he explains. “My current role is much more strategic and involves seeing where the company is moving and how that’s connected to the development team implementing the ideas. I really enjoy working with people, working with businesses, and having the responsibility to deliver the product.”

Life in Ireland

As for what Dmitry enjoys most about living and working in Ireland?  It’s the people, and perhaps surprisingly, the weather. “I know many people complain about it, but I like it,” he laughs. “I actually don’t enjoy the heat too much, so it’s perfect for me. During the day you can find sunshine and rain, which is better than just one way for months.”

He doesn’t hesitate to recommend Ireland as a destination for any techie who’s thinking of spreading their wings. “The people are very open and friendly and it’s a safe place,” he says. “We’re attracting good people from different countries and allowing them to grow their own potential and talent. There’s a huge hub of knowledgeable people available here to anyone who moves over.”