Continuing to introduce you to the Vendon team!
Our team interview series not only shows what Vendon is made of, but it is also our chance to remind you that there are so many ways to reach the position of your dream job and find your professional calling. We are simply happy to see our talents develop with us and even happier when our people embrace their personal goals and Vendon turns out to be a pivotal step in their further endeavors.
We began the article series with our Global Sales Project manager Veronika, who girl-bosses her way through every day and is a shining example of turning your passion into a career even if it is a detour from the initial vision. Read the interview with Veronika and catch some inspiration for your day.
But now, let’s dive into the more technical depths of the company and explore who works with developing the technology that is the very base of Vendon telemetry and payment products and solutions. It is no secret that ideas developed by Vendon require extensive IT knowledge and skills. The complexity behind such easy-to-use products is quite unimaginable. But our key to success is the most dedicated R&D team who tackle all the challenges that come along when developing new products and improving existing ones.
Meet Dzintars Bergs
Time at Vendon:
6 and a half years
Favorite snacks in the office:
Espresso shots and colleague home-made treats
Hobbies outside the office:
Travel, trivia and tinkering with smart home gadgets
Dzintars is one of those team members who embodies Vendon through and through. Calm, poised, and self-assured, yet aware of everything that goes on in the office and usually has a very apt opinion about all of it. Also, Dzintars won’t pass up a chance to make a good joke to lighten up even the most serious situations and keep the spirits up with wit and good humor.
But how did he choose to pursue a career in IT technologies in the first place? And how did he find Vendon (or should we say how did Vendon find Dzintars?) “It all goes way back to the school”, Dzintars recalls. “There was a very new subject added to the curriculum, called Computer Science, and, well, I liked it very much.” That might be quite an understatement as after a few sentences Dzintars reveals that soon enough he was able to teach some tips and tricks to the teacher himself. As the love for IT grew, the further education path logically led to more advanced levels of Internet technology and computer science, overall resulting in a Bachelor’s degree in programming at the top program in Latvia at that time.
“Still, the theory wasn’t enough,” Dzintars notes. “I wanted to advance, yet the studies did not help that much as they lacked the practical experience.” One of the characteristics the Vendon team knows about Dzintars very well is that he does not shy away from doing the actual thing to get the job done and reach a tangible result. And the school was no exception. Dzintars stands out with a result-oriented attitude and Vendon can always rely upon that he will find the most optimal solution for any situation.
That’s why Dzintars quickly started to pursue active practice and found a small company to learn from and put his skills to work. He admits that practical experience gave him a lot more confidence than academics and he realized that programming could be something that he would love to do for a career.
“It was 2009 when I started to do practical programming as a part-time job,” Dzintars remembers. “It accelerated my skills and further interest in programming.”
The early professional experience allowed Dzintars not only to advance his skills much faster but also gave him a lot of connections and a chance to meet colleagues who later on turned out to be pivotal contacts for his further career path. Soon enough Dzintars acquired the position of full stack web developer. “Parallel to full-time studies in the university, I had a full-time job, but still it wasn’t enough,” he smiles and adds that at that time he was also developing web applications.
Dzintars recalls that the intense work schedule was interesting while it was all new and he had a chance to learn. After completing university studies, it was clear that the job positions he pursued at that time had reached their potential too, plus, with no lectures, he had more free time on his hands, and he was eager to advance in his practical knowledge. “I wanted to work in a team with people who are more skillful, so I could learn new things,” Dzintars remembers.
With that in mind and after another brief work experience at an insurance company, he was addressed by the co-founder of Printful, which at that time actively recruited talents to push forward their growth and success. Dzintars didn’t think twice and went for a chat to see the offer. “It was a bit of a weird day,” Dzintars laughs. “I think there was some kind of unplanned mix-up which ultimately was successful for me.” It turns out that the interviewer wasn’t in the office that day, but instead, Dzintars was offered an interview with Kristiāns Vēbers — a head of Vendon, a company who at that time was part of Draugiem Group, and was also looking for an addition to the team. Dzintars agreed and, well, the rest is history – till today Dzintars has been and continues to be an integral part of the team and the whole company.
“Vendon is the best thing that has happened to me so far. It is a perfect workplace for me, and it is no exaggeration that I like everything about it. While my position is developer, and might seem quite technical, I still have opportunities to participate in the more creative inventing process as well, for instance when planning new product feature technical implementation, and it is very important for me.”
So, what is the main superpower of Dzintars? “I really do care a lot,” Dzintars admits. “And I take very close to heart everything that is going on with Vendon and at the office with an immediate instinct to take care of any problems or issues that arise.”
Asked about what is the one piece of advice he would give his younger self upon starting his career at Vendon, Dzintars notes that there was a bit of a struggle with him doubting his skills and talent at the beginning. “My main advice would be to always believe in yourself more. I had a feeling that everyone around me knows more, are better at what they do. And I doubted my technical skills a lot. But at the end of the day, it turns out that everyone is on their own journey and learning path.”
Colleagues are the main thing he couldn’t go without on a daily basis. “The building, name of the company or logo can change, but the people must stay,” he smiles and adds that colleagues are the main part of the job, making it so likable.
Asked about his favorite job duty, Dzintars admits that he enjoys being a part of the technical planning process. “It matters to me when I can give my opinion and input to reach an overall better result,” he says. “I do enjoy the process when I can participate in finding the best solution or suggest one based on my knowledge about the product and my experience.” Dzintars also adds that there is extra satisfaction in situations when some issue occurs, and he is able to find a solution by getting to the very core of the particular error. “It’s a great feeling to actually understand the cause of the bug and find an elegant solution for it.”
Outside the office, Dzintars loves to travel. He never misses an opportunity to see new places and experience new things. He also likes to pick his brains by participating in quiz nights and listening to trivia shows, which adds to his knowledge and overall is a fun way to spend time with friends and colleagues. “But I have another hobby,” Dzintars notes. “I like to play around with home automation solutions. Almost everything at my home is automated to some degree – lights, window covers, heat, music, ventilation, and so on. I have synchronized various routines that occur daily, for example, when I leave home, lights and the music turn off, and the vacuum cleaner starts a daily cleaning routine. Or when my alarm goes off in the morning, the blinds open to let the light in, and it would be easier for me to wake up. Main challenge is to get gadgets and smart devices from many different vendors to talk to each other and understand each other, just like in vending industry.” All we can comment on this – how amazing is that, right? Not only our team is doing wonders in inventing new telemetry solutions and features, but they also extend their talent outside the office as well by improving the daily life with neat tricks based on some serious technology skills.
To sum up, it is clear that Vendon won the lottery on the day when the mix-up with interviews occurred. Dzintars’ path to Vendon teaches us that determination and setting personal career goals early-on do pay off! Keep on doing and it will never go unnoticed, besides it can land you your dream job.
We wouldn’t be the same without you, Dzintars! Thank you for being so incredible!