Every quarter, we interview an Uplight employee to get to know more about what they do at Uplight, why they love working here, and what inspired them to get into this industry! Here is more about Sumaiya Begum Hafiz Sheriff.
What do you do for Uplight?
I am a Senior Software Engineer on the Synergy pod. Our pod is focused on building unified services for Uplight that can be used across all of its products. As a first step towards building unified services for Engage, I am currently migrating legacy systems into Google Cloud Platform. This involves doing a lot of research to identify managed solutions on Google’s marketplace that provides a better solution to make it easily scalable and portable with less downtime.
What do you find most exciting or rewarding about working for Uplight?
There are two things that I feel most excited about. One is Uplight’s culture – Everyone I have met at Uplight are amazing in their unique way; they support each other, have shared values & goals. I can reach out to anyone to get their honest opinion and feel free to share my thoughts. And the other one is the mission Uplight is working towards. Since I had outages due to power shortages in India, I understand the importance of energy conservation. I feel motivated to give my best to save energy and to work towards creating a sustainable environment for the next generations to live with. Bonus: I get to work with the latest technologies and creative minds.
How does the work you do contribute towards creating a more sustainable future and better customer energy experiences?
By having all the unified services in a single platform, we are building a strong technical foundation that is easily scalable, iterable and repeatable for all Uplight clients. These tech-enabled solutions will help utilities and its customers to be mindful about their energy usage which in-turn enables us to move forward towards achieving a bigger goal of climate change.
How did you get into this work?
I am a first generation graduate. It was challenging for me to convince my conservative parents from India to give me education and to lead an independent life. I was really good in mathematics and was passionate about computers from the time I was introduced to it. I used to spend my free time in computer science labs doing programming, debugging, and solving problems that others encountered. Looking at my interest, my professor assigned me challenging tasks which helped me to understand my passion and I decided to become a software engineer.
When I got a call from Ecotagious (now Uplight) for a job that could help customers save money on utility bills which in turn provides a solution to climate change, I was glad that my software skills could be used for a real world problem.
What has been your favorite project so far at Uplight?
I have really enjoyed all the projects that I have worked on. Anything that is challenging and connected to the real world keeps me on the edge.
One of them is a Voice Assistant product that I worked with although it was only for a short period. We had to consider all the dialects a human could have with a machine while programming a feature for that product. This project also helped me to understand the end to end process of generating those insights from the meter data. My next favourite project was working with big data in Hadoop and Azure data lake for a larger client for which I was hired. I enjoy working with data and numbers and uncovering useful insights from them.
What is one thing that has most surprised you about working here?
I became part of Uplight through one of its legacy companies: Ecotagious. There were less than 10 employees when I joined Ecotagious. Today, we are a unicorn and there are more than 400 employees around the globe striving and working towards the same goal and mission. This dedication and pace of growth keeps me surprised.