Meet Vik Sarang! As a Lead Engineer, it’s his job to do whatever it takes to make sure the developers on his team can deliver. That includes writing and reviewing code, or improving communication between the Product, Design, and Development teams. Sometimes it also means bringing in donuts and coffee! Learn more about Vik and his passion for taking initiative and getting the right work done.
What is your proudest accomplishment at Snapsheet and how does it align with Snapsheet’s values?
During my first few months at Snapsheet, I designed and implemented a user interface (UI) framework that enabled us to support the requirements of many different partners with just one platform. It wasn’t necessary to deliver the UI features we were working on at that point, but I knew that doing this would save us a lot of time down the road as we planned to enhance our product’s functionality and onboard new insurance carriers. I think this project aligns with Snapsheet’s B.R.A.D.S. cultural values, Be the Next and Action is our First Instinct. We are now using that framework throughout the product, and I didn’t have to ask permission to build it — I just took the initiative and got it done!
What’s the best thing about Snapsheet’s culture?
People are very open to hearing new ideas and trying them out. We’re always making improvements to our platform and the development process because everyone is encouraged to share suggestions around product and process improvements.
What past experiences have made you successful at Snapsheet?
Prior to Snapsheet, I was producing software for many different partners. Supporting varying requirements on one software platform is difficult, and it’s easy for the amount of code to grow exponentially. Since I had seen some of the pitfalls of approaching this problem with conventional solutions, I knew we could do it much more efficiently if we were smart about our product design.
How has your career grown since working at Snapsheet?
I joined Snapsheet as a Senior Engineer, and my responsibilities mainly revolved around writing and maintaining code. Since then my role has grown to include making product decisions, defining feature scope, and mentoring new developers. Since we aren’t a massive, highly matrixed organization, our leadership and team structure allows for more exposure to stretch projects. I have more opportunities to grow my skills and learn by doing.
How do your team’s ideas influence the company’s direction?
Developers aren’t told how to do things. It’s up to us to come up with solutions for our partners’ needs and make them real products. We collaborate with our Product team to determine what’s possible, and ultimately, that’s what determines what our products can do and how useful they can be to our partners. My team hasn’t had just one or two ideas that have influenced the company’s direction—we’re involved in the decision-making process on a daily basis. We influence everything from what the product can do to how we build it.
If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
Chicago. I love this city and I can’t think of a single place I’ve been that I would rather live. There’s no other place in the world where you can find such great music, fantastic food, an affordable cost of living, and still experience all four seasons!
What is your favorite hobby?
There’s something about live music that makes me really happy, and in Chicago we have so many great, smaller venues that consistently book fantastic shows. You’ll find me at The Empty Bottle, Subterranean, or other local bars since discovering new acts and seeing them live is one of my favorite hobbies.
What’s something most people don’t know about you?
I love board sports, although I don’t think I give off that kind of vibe! In the summer, I love cruising around Chicago with my friends who skateboard, and I try to make it out to Colorado at least once a year to scratch my snowboarding itch. I haven’t tried surfing yet, but it’s on my to do list!