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Engineering & Product

Heewoon Kim, Field Application Engineer at Imagr

The hunger to learn and experiment with cutting edge technology has seen Heewoon thrive as a Field Application Engineer at Imagr. Heewoon has some great advice around how to integrate hobbies and things that naturally interest you, with the direction you want to expand as a professional. Thanks for sharing your story, Heewoon.

Firstly, how would you explain to a five year old what it is you do?

I help make shopping carts that are smarter than the ones we use in supermarkets and make sure they are strong and don’t break easily.

“I help make shopping carts that are smarter than the ones we use in supermarkets and make sure they are strong and don’t break easily. ”

And for the adults, what does that translate to in regards to your day-to-day?

As a Field Application Engineer, I take part in designing the electronics that provide functionality to SmartCart. This includes researching which components and technology suit our application best and to test and create parts that are to be mounted in our solutions.

Does working as a Field Application Engineer in a high-tech business differ to your experience working elsewhere? 

It’s like pioneering into unknown territory. There are regions that need a lot of exploration when new high-tech meets a region or market that it has not been implemented before. Hence a significant amount of time is spent on experimenting with different approaches in validating our technology in order to make sure the steps we are taking are the right steps.

What are some of the common misconceptions about working as a Field Application Engineer?

For me specifically, my role is centred around the electronics portion of the hardware team. It will definitely vary depending on the business or the size of the company you are working at but rather than being confined in the specific role of electronics, the tasks of the Hardware Engineer expand with what you need to develop and test. 

One day I would be working on a CAD model of a circuit board and the next day I would be writing up a test script to run tests on that board. Or the week after that I may be discussing the features of a plastic part with a Mechanical Engineer. Being in this role has allowed more flexibility in what I do compared to what I originally thought it would be.

“I always wanted to become a person that was competent in what they were doing and having a deep pool of knowledge that I could quickly apply to what I was doing..”

What did you dream about doing as a kid ‘when you grew up’? 

I didn’t have a specific path I wanted to take as a profession when I was young, but I had a strong image of the figure I wanted to be. I always wanted to become a person that was competent in what they were doing and having a deep pool of knowledge that I could quickly apply to what I was doing or which I could share with other people to guide them.

Tell us a little bit more about your career journey and ultimately about how you ended up working at Imagr? 

The role at IMAGR is actually my first proper graduate role after university. I wanted to pursue a path in Electronics Design and took a break from studying for a year to gain more insight in the areas I wanted to gain expertise in. I also took an internship at an Electronics R&D company which had more focus on software development.

After finishing all my courses back at university, I came across an advertisement for a position at IMAGR and I have been here ever since!

Can you share some more insight into what the transition into working in a high-tech company was like?

Machine Learning wasn’t an area that I particularly had knowledge on, so a lot of learning was involved in order to fully understand how it integrated with the solution and how that affected the directions the hardware needed to take for R&D.   

What is it specifically that you like about working Imagr relative to your past jobs?

The biggest appeal is the work environment and the tech that we are able to work with. Following up on the previous response, the learning process at IMAGR was and still is a memorable part of the experience working at IMAGR.

I had joined when IMAGR was only 12 people and I was able to interact with various members about their own specialties and experiences. The ease of interaction allowed quick progress in development. 

Being able to work in an environment where you can continuously learn new things is one of the biggest things I value about working here at IMAGR.

“Always be active in expanding your experience and knowledge of the areas you wish to develop as a professional. ”

Do you have any advice for people considering working in a high-tech company as a career path and how they might get there quicker?

Always be active in expanding your experience and knowledge of the areas you wish to develop as a professional. It is always good if you can think of ways that integrate this with your daily life such as your hobbies or things that you like.

If you like listening to or playing music, design and create a simple amplifier or guitar effects pedal. If you like collecting items, construct something for display. Practicality will help you to consider things from many perspectives, something that definitely helps, particularly in a hardware-focused environment.

Lastly, Imagr continues to evolve. What kind of candidates do you think Imagr is looking for in terms of experience, attitude and character?

Imagr’s solution is transforming something that is ordinary and easily found into something that will change people’s daily lives. 

Because we are working on bringing two entirely different features into one, the ability to think outside the box and quickly expand the thoughts to actions is a valuable trait. 

Everyone at Imagr is happy to share their ideas, regardless of department - so a person who is an active thinker and that always has a willingness to learn would find Imagr a great work environment!

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