Part eight: Karthikeyan Muthusamy – Software Developer
Karthikeyan Muthusamy is part of a family of 6 members. Both his father and mother are farmers. He has a married elder brother, working as a Manager in the Banking sector. His brother is married and has a 5-year-old son.
Since he comes from an agricultural background, he is really interested in farming. Other than that, Karthikeyan likes to play and watch cricket but also enjoys watching movies from time to time.
Karthikeyan did his Bachelor of Engineering in Electronics and Communication Engineering from Kumaraguru College of Technology in the City of Coimbatore. After his college years, he started working at Cognizant Technology Solutions and after 4 years he decided to join Vanenburg.
Profile Karthikeyan Muthusamy:
Bachelor of Engineering, Electronics and Communication Engineering @ Kumaraguru College of Technology, Coimbatore
Previous working experience:
Cognizant Technology Solutions, Java Developer (2017-2021)
What do you do on a daily basis at Vanenburg?
Currently, I am developing a Scanner application in Java for the Client Omoda. This application interacts with the Warehouse Management System which was developed in the Thinkwise Platform. Now and then I am also working on creating and making changes to the functionalities in the WMS thinkwise application, which all are used by the Scanner Java application.
Initially, I have been informed that I will be fully working on low code development on the thinkwise platform which is the reason I underwent training for the thinkwise Platform. After a few months, I had to choose between low-code development and Java development. Since I liked Java development more, I decided to choose Java development.
Along with the Project work, I am currently doing Google cloud training for the Professional Cloud Developer Certification which increased my knowledge and interest in Cloud Technology. So I am really looking forward to working on Google Cloud Projects.
Before joining Vanenburg, you worked at another IT company. What made you decide to join Vanenburg?
Before Joining Vanenburg, I worked as a Java developer in CTS for around 4 years. There I have developed various web applications for insurance companies like Anthem and MetLife. Since the technologies and frameworks used for application development were very old, I decided to switch to a new Company where I can get an opportunity to work with the latest technologies, especially cloud technology.
At that time I came to know about Vanenburg from one of my friends who was already working at Vanenburg. He gave a lot of positive feedback about the company like the culture, employee freedom, yearly hikes, etc… I have also gone through the company website and noticed that Vanenburg is a Partner with Google cloud and the technologies Vanenburg uses for development are the latest. Also, the interview process was very different from other companies. During the whole interview process, they were really focused on testing my logical thinking, designing, and problem-solving skills which I liked a lot. These all are the reasons I decided to join Vanenburg.
I was looking for a new opportunity with the latest technologies since I was a bit scared of my future due to the old technologies I was using.
“In my opinion having good coding and technical skills are not enough to develop an application. We should also have good logical thinking, problem-solving, and analysis skills to develop an application because functionalities are the heart of an application.”
What is unique about Vanenburg compared to similar companies in the industry?
What I like and see as unique about Vanenburg, is the way Vanenburg treats and respects the employees and also the freedom we get. The culture is not hierarchical, everyone is equal and the managers are down to earth.
Each and everyone is getting opportunities to voice their opinions and the seniors are always ready to hear them with patience, encouraging us to work more and come up with new ideas.
Along with project-related work, we are getting opportunities to learn cloud technologies and do certifications as well.
We have our internal platforms like Rappit, and Flowcreate which help the developer to do their work way faster than before, plus reducing a lot of manual work. In the end, we are able to provide solutions to the customer quicker which makes them happier.
As a software company, the first and foremost thing is customer satisfaction and how happy customers are with our end product. I think Vanenburg is always making this its number one priority.
The freedom we get to express ourselves, down-to-earth people, and also management. Non-hierarchical, easy to reach out to responsible upper-level people.
Technologies are the latest of the latest, which help the customers, and fasten the process.
On what customer project(s) are you currently working?
Currently, I am working on the development of a scanner application for our customer Omoda. This application will be used by the employees of Omoda for their daily activities like labeling, order picking, stock counting, etc.
Can you tell us a little bit more about your role in the Omoda project and how we help Omoda?
Omoda is a Dutch fashion retail company that sells thousands of shoes, clothes, and accessories each day, using its webshop and physical shops across the Netherlands.
For Omoda, we are developing a completely new warehouse management system (WMS), which will replace their current legacy environment. The current system is old and maintenance is becoming difficult which is the reason for them to switch to newer technologies.
With Vanenburg we are developing the core of the Warehouse Management system on the Thinkwise platform. The WMS is like a central system. Specific business functionalities are developed as individual applications and they connect with the WMS. These individual applications are called satellite applications. Currently, I am working on developing one of the satellite applications called the ‘scanner application’.
This application will be used by the Omoda employees on their hand scanner devices (like mobile phones). They will use this application for their daily activities like printing labels for products, picking orders, and counting stocks. As of now, we have developed the functionality for labeling and it was moved to production.
You mentioned that you had to follow a training in the Tinkwise platform. Can you tell us a little bit about that platform and the partnership between Vanenburg and Thinkwise?
Thinkwise is a low-code and model-driven development platform which enables the quick and easy development of business software with minimal technical expertise. Since it is model-driven, the data model is the base of the application which will get converted into a working application.
In thinkwise, the software factory is the platform used for developing data models and User Interface models that will be visualized as an application via a graphical user interface or web user interface. For the functionalities that can’t be developed via data model, the software factory provides features like logic concepts, functionality, and subroutines to implement them using SQL stored procedures. So good SQL knowledge is enough to develop an application in a thinkwise platform. It also provides features like themes, icons, menus, screen types, and subjects to design the structure, and look of the screen where you can also apply various styling.
Once the development is completed, the application model is transferred to the Intelligent Application Manager (IAM). The Intelligent Application Manager manages all the models of applications that are in the acceptance and production phases. The application managers can also set up authorizations using IAM. IAM Provides a User Interface where end users can set up their own user preferences and also get suggestions from IAM to optimize their user experience.
Applications developed in Thinkwise are available as User Interface via the Platforms Windows, Web, and Mobile. The Web and the Mobile platform uses the latest UI technologies (Currently React) for the User Interface.
The modernization of software applications takes place with the Thinkwise Upcycler Component. This tool is deployed by Thinkwise itself. In addition to these, we have a component called Indicium Application tier which provides features for third-party user interfaces or applications to access the data, processes, and business logic of Thinkwise applications via REST API call.
“The current NL team I am working with gives me enough opportunities to voice out my opinion and they are always ready to hear it which motivates me to work more.”
And the communication between the team in the Netherlands when you are located in India, is that challenging, and how do you make it work?
Since I never had experience working with Dutch people before, Initially I was nervous and a little bit scared about the collaboration and communication with dutch colleagues. But the experience was totally different from what I expected, as all of them were really nice, down to earth, easily approachable, and especially fun-loving. They made me feel comfortable and I never had any big challenges in communicating with them apart from the difficulties in understanding their accent in the initial few calls.
Dutch people are direct and outspoken. I really like that. The current NL team I am working with gives me enough opportunities to voice out my opinion and they are always ready to hear it which motivates me to work more. Peter and Carsten are my main contacts, and they gave me a very warm welcome, are straightforward, fun, and make me feel comfortable overall! Just simple things like asking how I am, how is it going at home, etc. I would say working with them is one of the greatest experiences which I can cherish for the rest of my life.
Speaking of India, two months ago, Vanenburg founder and Chairman Jan Baan visited the office in India. How was the experience to meet him in real life?
It was a wonderful experience meeting him in real life. Since I recently joined when he visited the India office, we had freshers meeting with him which went for around 1 hour. In that meeting, he explained the whole journey of the company and how our company evolved, various technologies he came across, and how our company utilized those technologies in various products and customer projects, future plans, etc.
The speech was very inspirational and motivating. I still can’t believe where he gets all the energy from even at this age. He was very energetic and enthusiastic and down to earth. In the employee meeting which we had on the same day, he answered all our questions politely and without any hesitation.
Do you have other exciting (personal) projects or developments coming up?
After Joining here at Vanenburg, The Rappit platform is something that most people were talking about. So I am really looking forward and excited to work on Rappit projects to explore more about the Rappit Platform. And also I am currently doing training for Professional Cloud Developer Certification. I really like the training and it helps to improve my Knowledge of cloud technology. So I’m looking forward to working on cloud projects to apply whatever I have learned in real-world projects.