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Aurelian and His Fascinating Journey from Software Engineering to Software Architecture

Meet our colleague Aurelian Maga, an accomplished specialist with more than 20 years of software development experience. His 10-year career path with Fortech took him naturally from Software Engineering to Software Architecture, giving Aurelian plenty of room for exploration in both technical and managerial roles.

Get a glimpse #BehindTheCode. Read about Aurelian’s career journey, the eCommerce projects he is currently working on, and his lifelong passion for software development.

Tell us about yourself and your professional background.

I studied Telecommunications at the Technical University of Cluj-Napoca. After graduation, a natural choice for me was to start my career at a Telecom company. I worked as a Software Engineer on exciting projects for more than four years. Next, I moved overseas, working for a big multinational company for a couple of years. I then followed my path at a small company doing Interactive Voice Response (IVR) solutions for the North American market. All great and enriching experiences.

How did your journey with Fortech begin? What do you do at Fortech? Please describe your career journey at Fortech & in your current role.

As for Fortech, I joined the company in 2010. Since then, I have held various technical or management roles in the company. However, I always returned to what I like the most: software development. I had the opportunity to be involved in an eCommerce project from, as they say, cradle to grave, learning along the way and launching distinct iterations of its products. At the same time, I was helping with various projects and clients from different industries that I lost track of.

My first project at Fortech was in online grocery: we provide digital experiences to grocery shoppers: digital flyers as software service. I had the task of developing new features, transitioning knowledge from the US team to the Fortech team, and growing the team. It was a great experience since I had to wear multiple hats in the process. We started with two people and went up to 250 at the peak of the project. For me, the technical part was still the core aspect of my work, but I have done my best to provide support in growing the team. It was a period when Web 2.0 was still developing, so there were a lot of learning opportunities to make the grocery platform succeed in the market. Watching the emergent technologies, like NodeJS and Xamarin, was something that I enjoyed. I was also recommending the company to adopt them.

Now, my daily job involves feature development on the existing grocery platform: understanding business requirements, translating them into components, etc. Interviewing new candidates and discussing new directions are also activities that give me a nice break from projects. Besides my activities as a technical consultant for different projects, I have also got involved in various student programs (like “Discover Your Call in IT” – DPIT – program) and helped open our delivery center in Brașov.

Aurelian and the team of high school students he mentored in the DPIT program.

Could you describe shortly the project you are currently working on?

Online grocery is still a fascinating domain to work on. While from the outside it looks straightforward, things change when you are on the other end. I remember the reluctance of the client to adopt new technologies, while today, when everything is as streamlined as possible, the “cloud” stack is the norm. My team is working on integrating various features, taking care of specification, implementation, testing, and releasing features.

What’s the project’s tech stack like?

We are running on Google Cloud Kubernetes using MongoDB and Redis cache, all linked with .NET (C#) sauce. 😊

What’s your favorite thing about this project?

Seeing the grocery industry and the project evolving makes you understand the need to adapt, namely adopting new technologies and processes. Then, there is the joy of knowing that someone is using your product, and hopefully, you make their life easier.

What’s the most challenging thing(s) about this project?

The platform is relatively new, so understanding it requires time before jumping on adding new features. At the beginning of my career, a poster said that only 10% was coding when working on a feature; I can say this is still true today. 😊

How about the team? What is the vibe?

The team is relatively new, formed less than six months ago, and we are still getting to know each other. Given the context, the way you see people online does not prepare you for IRL (in real life), as I have learned hands-on. The other day at the office, I noticed someone looking at me, and it took a little bit to realize it was one of my teammates. 😊 However, we gathered a great, supportive, and friendly team.

Tell us about your last challenge. Did you enjoy it?

My last challenge was in a side project in the IVR industry, where text-to-speech technology is one of the building blocks. Regarding the Romanian language, the support was not great back in 2015. So, I took and enjoyed the challenge of setting up and running various open-source projects for doing just that, a text-to-speech system for the Romanian language.

What do you like doing in your spare time?

In my spare time, I like tinkering with small IoT projects and keeping up with various topics in Physics. Also, I like skiing, and lately, I have discovered ski touring. When the weather allows, I try to get there and practice it. Summers are for family vacations, as long as there is water around. Happy moments create great memories.

What’s next in your career journey?

I am looking forward to sharing my knowledge and experience, while learning/growing by myself. Hopefully, others could learn from them and start their path with an advantage.

What advice would you give to someone interested in joining Fortech?

In today’s “fast” moving economy, I see Fortech as a company providing growth and stability. We craft and grow together. After having worked in small and large companies during my whole career, I can say for sure that here, at Fortech, you have both growth and stability at the same time. They are equally crucial for a balanced and accomplished life.

What’s Your Story?

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