Hagar is a Software Quality Engineer in Berlin, Germany. She joined AWS in July, 2020.
HereAtAWS: Tell us about your career journey. What brought you to your current role at AWS?
Hagar: I started working nine years ago at a start-up in Alexandria, Egypt. Due to the centralization of the Egyptian market, my choice for career progression was either to move to the capital Cairo or to move abroad.
I moved to Germany in 2014, and my challenge was how to balance my passion for my work, and my responsibilities as a wife/mother. I moved from Software Quality Engineering to Quality Manager, and later to an Automotive Quality Engineering manager and Lead Quality Consultant. I gained a lot of experience and became more central to my team, but the balance between work meetings, different time zones and my day commitments to my children became very difficult.
This is when I started thinking of joining AWS. I needed to join a place where there’s a lot of room for career progression, a place where there are many other parents and a culture of support and understanding. As well as a job that provides autonomy and flexibility to fit my daily family commitments and aspirations. And here I am today, a Software Quality Engineer in Redshift, AWS.
HereAtAWS: Can you explain in simple terms: your role, who your customers are, and how you help them?
Hagar: I work as a Software Quality Engineer in the Redshift Team at AWS located in Berlin, Germany. My job is to ensure the production of high-quality features that would meet the expectations of Redshift customers for a highly scalable, peta-byte scale excellent analytical database.
Our customers come from different fields and sizes; they are mainly interested in using the vast amounts of archived operational data to useful insights that can derive business decisions with low cost and high speed.
My job is to listen to customer feedback, optimize our quality processes, test automation and provide quality features and performance that would meet and exceed customer expectations.
HereAtAWS: Have you had to learn any specific new skills (technical or soft) for your role?
Hagar: Since I joined AWS, it has been a constant learning curve. I had to work with completely new development environments, tech stack, tools and processes. I love the fact that I can be excited about each and every day of working at AWS and confident that there’s always an opportunity to learn something new.
HereAtAWS: What is the most exciting part of your job?
Hagar: The idea of being an individual contributing to an excellent database engine is very exciting to me. As a child, and later as a computer science student, I always had passion for data and databases, today, being one of the builders of peta-byte scale database is very exciting.
HereAtAWS: What advice would you give people joining AWS?
Hagar: I would say: If you are a person who is looking for new challenges, who likes learning something new every day, who aspires for a strong career journey with unique life-work balance, AWS is where you should be!
HereAtAWS: What three words would you use to describe workdays at AWS?
Hagar: My workdays are Flexible, Challenging, and Progressive.
HereAtAWS: Do you have any needs or commitment that require flexibility in your role?
Hagar: Flexibility is key for me. Working full-time in a challenging software product environment, on a very high scale while being a mother of two young children, cannot be achieved without a very flexible work schedule. As a mother and as a software quality engineer, I personally require very high standards on the tasks I’m working on, and also in the upraising of my children. I like to make sure that I am engaged in my children’s school life and daily events in addition to working in a place where it is professionally satisfying for my career passion. At AWS, I work in a flexible environment, with many other colleagues that are as well parents and have a very good understanding for the flexibility parenthood requires and are supportive. In addition, I work with daily challenges that make my workday exciting and professionally rewarding.