Tell us a bit about yourself and your role at Immense?
As a solutions analyst on the product and solutions team and our US team my work falls into 2 areas:
- Making sure that our clients in the US are getting the most out of our product. This includes developing training for customers so they can hit the ground running and troubleshooting customer issues to make sure that they have a great user experience.
- Making sure that the product works well for our customers. This means informing the development team about user needs. How would a customer use our software to answer what questions?
How did you find out about Immense and become involved in the company?
Stephen, the other half of our US team, also got his Master’s in Urban and Regional Planning from San Jose State University. He came to my mapping software class one day. Stephen used to be a teacher’s assistant for this class. He gave a small presentation on what Immense did and told us about an internship in Milton Keynes over the summer. I reached out to him and ended up hopping over the pond from San Francisco and working as an intern for a couple of months in 2018. After that summer, I stayed in touch with the team and used Immense’s product for my graduate research project. I joined the US team full time in September 2019.
What is a typical day like for you at Immense?
They are all different! My day used to include a commute to our Redwood City office (between San Francisco and San Jose) and lots of online collaboration with the Immense team around the world. So, I feel like I was more prepared than most for this transition to virtual working. Even though I do collaborate everyday with the team, I do miss the time spent working with everyone in person when I would visit the UK offices a few times a year.
My typical day is spent helping our current customers in the US get the most out of our product. We are always making the product better and the feedback that we get from our customers allows us to improve and better align it with their needs.
What is the best part about working at Immense?
The best part about working at Immense is the people that I get to work with every day. This is the smartest, kindest, most hardworking group of people I have worked with yet.
What would you say is the most challenging part of the job?
The most challenging part right now is the lack of in-person interaction. Online collaboration works great, but it will be nice to see everyone in person when it is safe to do so!
What has been your biggest career achievement?
Getting my master’s degree in Urban Planning allowed me to make a career transition from operations management at a freight railroad to working at a place like Immense. I really enjoy going to work every day doing work that interests me, that I enjoy, and that makes the world a little bit better.
What did you want to be when you were younger?
I wanted to play basketball in the NBA, but I stopped growing a bit too soon for that.
What do you think the future of mobility looks like?
I think that we are moving away from privately owned gasoline cars (especially in the US) towards a more shared, on-demand, electric, and autonomously driven future. However, the pandemic has made it more unclear how we will get there. It has highlighted the importance of transportation companies and systems to be nimble and ready for change. It is very exciting to work on a powerful product designed to plan for that change.
What do you think are the biggest challenges facing the industry in the current climate?
It is difficult to have people in close quarters right now and additional density is one of the best ways to improve the efficiency of transportation systems. Simulating new transit modes and configurations will be key to designing systems that keep people safe, while getting them where they need to go as efficiently as possible.
When you’re not working, what are your hobbies and interests?
I love to cook. Staying at home during the pandemic has given me more time than ever to do it! I also love exploring San Francisco, it almost scratches the same itch as my other hobby, travel. Hopefully, I will be back to that sooner than later!
If you were stuck on a desert island and could take three things with you what would they be?
Sunscreen, sunglasses, and my Bluetooth speaker – sounds like the vacation I’ve been wanting to take!