Engineering and Product
Chandra Rana, Head of Infrastructure at Harmoney
From dreaming of becoming a Space Shuttle Engineer to falling in love with computers and not looking back, Chandra Rana, Head of Infrastructure at Harmoney, has found a space where he loves to come to work each day.
We caught up with Chandra to learn more about what his role as Head of Infrastructure entails, his career journey leading up to his current position, as well as some advice he has for others interested in following a similar path.
Thanks for sharing your story, Chandra.
Getting to know Chandra
Favourite book of all time?
Ignited Minds by ABJ Abdul Kalam.
Top hobby outside of work?
DIY at home.
Your number one daily habit that keeps you productive?
Taking short breaks
Favourite piece of tech you use in your workday and why?
Work Phone - Keep my notes and daily tasks in one location.
“...I always wanted to be a Space Shuttle Engineer...”
Firstly, how would you explain to a five-year-old what it is you do?
Consider me someone who buys the new toys for you. If something is broken, I make sure it gets fixed, and I also put processes in place to ensure your toys never get stolen.
And for the adults, what does that translate to in regards to your day-to-day at Harmoney? If you can give specific examples that would be ideal.
I look after the assets management and cloud infrastructure of the company. I ensure that all the hardware and software security and compliance are in place.
Was working in tech something you dreamed about doing as a kid, if not what was?
As a kid, I always wanted to be a Space Shuttle Engineer, and in my school, when computers got introduced, I thought this was the closest thing I could start. Since then, computers have kept me amazed. I always thought I didn't want the computer to tell me what to do; I wanted the computer to do what I voiced.
What are some of the most interesting challenges that you face in your role currently?
With covid, everything is changing, and the certainty of getting things with suppliers is not reliant. We had to deliver some hardware tokens to Fiji, which took ages. I learned from the experience that if things are not inside your environment, then take enough buffer. Make contingency plans.
“I always wanted to know the answers to why.”
Tell us a little bit more about your career pathway and ultimately how you got into your current role Harmoney?
I started my career as a developer, but I always wanted to understand the whole software lifecycle process. I kept involving myself in all the software processes.
After working for some time as a developer, I moved to New Zealand and started working as a software support engineer to understand more about end-user experiences. I always wanted to know the answers to why. After that, I moved to the automation testing area, where I worked as an automation tester and took the responsibility of scrum master.
My next challenge was deploying software and laying down release practices, so I joined Bidfood as a Senior DevOps Engineer / Release Manager. Bidfood understood my potential and gave me additional responsibilities as an Integration lead.
When there was an opportunity to manage the team, I didn't hesitate and took up the challenge of Mobile and Integration - Project lead responsibilities. After spending a few years with Bidfood, I got promoted as an Operations Manager in the Bidfood eCommerce division, BidOne where I led the customer support team and took responsibility for releases, and deployments and supporting our cloud infrastructure.
When I heard about the opportunity of Cloud Operations Manager at Harmoney, I knew this was the path where I wanted to move my career. Since then, I have been working in Harmoney as a Cloud Operations Manager and recently got promoted to Head of Infrastructure.
What do you love about your role and why should others consider the career path?
I love so many things about my job, including maintaining relationships with our suppliers, taking care of our cloud infrastructure, and helping Harmoney employees with any technical issues. It's a job with so many responsibilities but also allows looking at the whole software development lifecycle and the ins and outs of the Harmoney operations.
“Teamwork, being humble and being awesome are a few characteristics that all the Harmoney staff possess.”
Lastly, are there any key traits or characteristics of people that do well in the Harmeoney environment?
Teamwork, being humble and being awesome are a few characteristics that all the Harmoney staff possess. Harmoney is a great place to work. It's a family.
There is a little bit of Harmoney in all of us. All the staff are intelligent, humble and always helping each other. If you have these qualities, you would love to work in Harmoney.