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Inside Evernote: Andreas Andreakis
Posted by Kacey Short on 06 Jan 2017
Andreas Andreakis is a Senior Software Engineer on Evernote’s service backend team. He has been with the company since March of 2015, working originally in our Zürich office and recently relocating to our Redwood City headquarters.
How did you end up at Evernote?
I was living in Germany, but I wanted to work for a Silicon Valley company. I decided to join Evernote because the people I met in the interview process were amazing. The technical excellence I saw from them was top notch and it convinced me this was the place to be.
What is the biggest technical challenge you’re solving right now?
The backend systems that serve all Evernote clients are a monolith, which makes code changes riskier. Releasing changes requires coordination across multiple teams, which is a lot of effort. In order to solve this problem, we are currently writing new code that will run on a microservices platform. We are also planning to gradually break down the monolith into smaller services.
Our current architecture is very stable and mature, but it hasn’t changed in a while. Anirban Kundu, our CTO, has encouraged the engineers to have ownership in pushing new ideas and making things happen. We can pick technologies we want to use on projects without worrying that those decisions will be blocked by managers.
That sounds refreshing.
A lot of other companies have a big distance between the engineers and the CTO but that’s not the case here. It feels like everyone is equal and this goes all the way up to the CTO. Anirban sits in on meetings as if he is one of us; it doesn’t feel like, “oh my god, this is the CTO and we have to be careful of what we say.” He and the other managers and leaders feel like peers because they treat everyone the same.
What I value most is the human component here. This isn’t the sort of place where people want to be the alpha or they have huge egos and want to be better than everyone else. I like that.
So how do the technical teams work at Evernote?
There are two kinds of teams:
Is the work fun?
For sure. We do a lot of interesting and new things. We have small, lean engineering teams with a lot of ambition so you can’t avoid learning new things as you go, no matter what your experience level is. I’ve had the chance to do exciting things here — specifically with Cloud technologies. It’s also fun because of the people. The atmosphere in the office is naturally comfortable and friendly.
What is the most satisfying part of your job?
There are many satisfying parts of my job, but the main one is being able to work together with others on hard problems. I like when we think through a solution on the board, code it up, roll it out into production, observe how it behaves, and iterate from there.
You started out working remotely. How was that experience?
I was a remote worker for one and a half years in Zürich and it was a superb experience. I never felt detached or out of the loop because the team naturally tried hard to keep me up to date. They would organize meetings across the time zones that I could attend. I do enjoy being in the office more but the remote experience was not isolating.
People here don’t care as much if you work in the office, at your desk or from home. I get bored and demotivated when I have to sit for 8+ hours every day at the same desk. It’s a pleasure being able to walk around the office and socialize here and there, or drive home to San Francisco and work in a coffee shop. We don’t subscribe to the idea that productivity only comes from keeping your head down and coding day after day.
What are three things you think someone considering working for Evernote should know?
It’s an exciting time to join the company!
I have been working at Evernote full-time (More than 3 years)
Mission driven - what Evernote is cool, but what users do with it is inspiring
Global scale - a chance to impact 200M+ registered users
People - work with people you'd choose to hang out with
300 person software companies come with ups and downs
Odd perception in Silicon Valley but globally loved
I applied through a recruiter. The process took a week. I interviewed at Evernote (Redwood City, CA) in June 2018.
Interview process was simple, Phone round and Onsite.
Phone round was 45 mins with simple Algo question and testing related questions
Oniste: experience was good and everyone was prepared what to ask, no hassels.
Pay Equality Pledge
Committed to paying equitably for equal work & experience
Tech Hiring Commitment
Helping to train, hire and promote more technology workers
Social Responsibility Pledge
Formal programs or foundation to give back to communities
Has programs that support a diverse and inclusive workforce