Tell us about yourself, Willem!
Together with my family, I live in the beautiful village of Vries in the Netherlands. Because of that, I'm the most northern Purple employee on the team. Thankfully the distance between me and my colleagues is relatively small thanks to Microsoft Teams and other tools we use for virtual working. I live in a nice area where I can take long walks to contemplate and wrap my mind around things. I also like to take my motorcycle and make a touring the area with some friends. For me the best way to clear my head is gardening, this is a hobby and I do this a lot. I started as a developer at Purple on November 1st 2021 and combined it makes a good balance between working at home and getting some fresh air.
How did you experience your first months at Purple?
Great! I was really looking forward to being a developer again. My full-time Scrum mastership at my former employer was a temporary break in being a Software Engineer. But I decided to become a Software Engineer again. Purple provided me with this opportunity. It’s exciting to be a part of this relatively small team of professionals and help develop and mature the software engineering process.
Why is this so exciting?
Most importantly because the customer asks for new features and capabilities that we can develop ourselves. It is extremely fun and challenging to do. Software development has changed from when I started back in 1997. I remember projects that forced me to write low-level machine code because of a lack of resources. Nowadays I am working on serverless computing in Azure, a place where scaling is easy. There are still so many things to discover in Software Engineering. You have to be part of a team of enthusiasts to be able to keep up.
What kept you busy in the first couple of months?
We made a good start with the Purple Phone Manager: this is a new Teams app to manage big (and small) amounts of acquired phone numbers that can be managed and assigned to users directly. The first MVP of the Purple Phone Manager will be demonstrated to customers soon. As long as there is good customer involvement, we will continue to build new features and add them over time. And that is something where we will keep our focus on: continuous customer involvement during the development process. Not only for building customer valued features but also as security and continuous delivery have our direct attention.
What value is the Phone Manager to our customers?
Phone number management is cumbersome for a lot of our customers. Phone numbers are bought in batches and end up being managed in spreadsheets before they are individually assigned to users. Often this is done manually or by troublesome scripts when Teams is configured for a certain user. This can be done better: Purple Phone Manager enables the customer to manage phone numbers quicker, easier and more secure. Batches are added easily and numbers are assigned with the press of a button.
But I will not reveal everything yet! There will be a big upcoming event where we will launch the Purple Phone Manager for our customers.
And last but not least: recently we changed our name to Purple. What does Purple mean to you?
Agility and broad capability, mainly because of the high level of expertise and professionalism of the team. And that is exactly what one needs in the modern working-at-home and communication storm we are in. I sincerely hope that many new customers choose to enter the world of Purple!'