Designing for Scale
By Wissam Abirached - Follow @imwiss
I'm an Engineering Manager specializing in architecting and scaling web apps, as well as building all-star teams and helping them reach their full potential.
I am, first and foremost, a problem solver at heart. I enjoy building products that aim to solve real-life problems; from automating tasks in order to improve small businesses' workflow to building an app that disrupts the real estate industry.
When I'm not at my desk coding or writing this blog, I enjoy playing hockey, watching a good movie, but most importantly, spending time with my lovely wife and three amazing kids.
For opportunities, questions, or just fun talk, I can be reached at email@example.com.
I am currently an Engineering Manager at InVision, where I get to focus on scaling products and building all-star teams.
I'm extremely humbled to get to work with such an amazingly talented team on a product that affects hundreds of millions of people. InVision is used to design and prototype apps by some of the most popular companies in the world, which end up affecting most of our lives on a day-to-day basis.
Previous Work and Side Projects
As a Lead Software Engineer at InVision, my main tools were React, Redux, MobX, Node.js, Express, MySQL, and Go.
I put a lot of emphasis on being an operationally focused engineer and spent time thinking about the health of our apps and services, by focusing on areas such as monitoring, alerting, and performance.
Part of my job also consisted of breaking down projects and problems into feasible technical solutions, and working with our team to achieve them. This meant either fleshing out the requirements with our product team, working on providing estimates, working on an architectural level to design the solution, or diving into the code and building the product.
I also spent time trying to put best practices in place to improve the overall performance and efficiency of the team and company, while mentoring and helping my peers as much as possible.Clevertech
I worked on the backend (Node.js, Express), database (MongoDB), frontend (React, Redux), and automated tests.
My work involved dealing with clients directly: daily standups and constant updates through Jira tickets / Slack, breaking down the business goals into concrete technical tasks, planning sprints, and ensuring that the projects were on track.Frontdoor
I'm the cofounder (and previously CTO) of Frontdoor, an app set out to make apartment hunting easier.
I was in charge of developing the first version of Frontdoor and improving it for the next 1.5 years. I built a product that was used by over 5k users and available in multiple cities by the time I stepped down.
My role at Frontdoor allowed me to wear multiple hats: backend, database, DevOps, frontend. I developed our RESTful API running on Node.js, our databases, the integration with third-party services (retrieving listings from partners, analytics, email integrations, etc), deploying and maintaining a product / staging / development environment. I was also in charge of breaking down the features and product roadmap into concrete tasks for our team of engineers, and making sure that nothing is blocking them from moving forward with their tasks.
Here are some articles that talk about Frontdoor's goals and challenges:
- These 3 Entrepreneurs Want to Change the Way You Look for a New Apartment (Here’s How)
- This Startup Will Find You a New Apartment--No Phone Calls or Emails Needed
In a previous life, I was a software engineer / web developer for over 6 years at Genetec, a top employer in Montreal for the last 10 years and an innovator in the security industry. My role at Genetec varied a lot; from being the sole SDK Specialist to helping build a multi-functional team that specialized in web applications.
I was also the lead developer on multiple big projects, mentored interns and new employees, and was heavily involved in breaking down new projects (business requirements, technology implications, etc).
I was the lead front-end developer on the last project I worked on, which consisted of building a web app for Genetec's main product, Security Center. The web app allowed users to view their camera feeds, control their PTZ cameras, add bookmarks, generate reports, etc. Here is a preview of Genetec's Web Client (video made by Genetec).
Prior to that, another big project I worked on was the Genetec Updater Service, which consisted of a service that would do background checks for new versions of the Genetec products and would update them.
I also got to work on Genetec's System Availability Monitor, which was a dashboard used by users to monitor the Genetec products, view analytics, and run reports.
Instavisit was the predecessor to Frontdoor. It helped us learn a lot about the market and the needs of clients,
and eventually Instavisit was spinned off into Frontdoor. New mission, new goals, and new team members.
Here are articles that describe some of the challenges we encountered:
- The Globe and Mail: There’s an inevitable headwind against entrepreneurship in Canada
- Tech Vibes: Apartment Hunting App Moves to US Because Canadian Real Estate Industry Won't Share Data
Co-organizer of the Ionic Montreal meetup group.