LIFE AT MATERIALISE
Expanding Materialise’s Software Development Team with a Collaboration Hub in Barcelona
3 min read
We’re experiencing exciting growth in our team at Materialise, specifically in Spain. After expanding the business there in November 2009, we created our representative office in March 2014 with just two employees. Today, Materialise Spain has grown to 16 employees, and we are looking forward to welcoming more new colleagues later this year. To learn more about this development, we spoke with Front-End Engineer Rebecca Frances Cansinos, DevOps Engineer Jordi Perez Talamino, and Full-Stack Engineer Andriy Sokolov from our medical software department about their experiences with our new collaboration hub in Barcelona.
You’ve all been working at Materialise for about nine months now. How do you feel about the company and your positions now?
Rebecca: I’m thrilled to be on the cutting edge of innovations in the industry and my field. I’m able to learn a lot and expand my development knowledge using almost every framework. This is one of the first companies I’ve worked at where respect for your working hours comes from the top down. My experience with many other companies shows that this is not the norm in the market, so that makes me really happy to work here.
And on a personal note, what I appreciate the most is the respect I receive. I usually hate to start sentences like this, but as a transgender person, it’s not always easy. I haven’t experienced any disrespect at Materialise, and I feel full support and recognition of my identity, name, and pronouns, which indicates to me that we are a company open to diversity.
Jordi: For me, the explanation of the company and DevOps engineer role was so intriguing that I had to jump in and try it, and I can tell you now that I am very, very happy with the company and my decision to start in this role. If I had known it would be like this, I would have been even more confident at the beginning.
Andriy: I’m originally from Ukraine but have been living in Barcelona for 22 years, so I am well acquainted with the software market here. I know there are not many vacancies in product companies, so although my previous position was as an architect, I decided to start as a developer because of the potential growth in this role — you get to know the product so well. I work on the M3S team, where everyone has a lot of knowledge of the product. Plus, it’s a distributed team, so I get to collaborate with our colleagues from the Ukraine office. I appreciate that everyone is always open to new solutions, and we can easily agree on everything and share experiences with each other.
What are your thoughts on Materialise’s culture?
Jordi: The first time I experienced the corporate culture was during a trip to headquarters in Leuven, Belgium. Colleagues from Spain spent two weeks in Leuven, and it was an amazing experience. The Barcelona office didn’t exist at that time yet, so it was a challenge for everyone in the area to meet up. During this trip, we spent a lot of time together, participating in several different activities, and I met many new people. It felt great to be part of a big team.
Andriy: I agree — the business trip to Leuven was a great experience! I was impressed by the organization of work, management’s attitude, and production at HQ. Materialise's mission is something I value a lot – it’s meaningful to me that our products can help people.
Additionally, since I’m living outside Barcelona, Materialise’s hybrid way of working has been a much better solution for me. I have the flexibility to work from home a few days a week and reduce commute time.
Before we opened our collaboration space in Barcelona, it was 100% remote work. How do you feel about our hybrid way of working?
Jordi: I believe in building personal and human relationships because, in the end, you are part of a team. It’s important to meet together and help each other, and I feel that working from home 100% of the time restricts this. Regardless of whether you’re a developer or in management, you’ll always need to work with others, and offline meetings are valuable for collaboration. We’re trying to have in-person meetings once a week now, and I think that will grow even more in the future as our community continues expanding.
What is the atmosphere like in the Barcelona office space?
Jordi: We’re currently a small community, but it’s growing quickly. More colleagues have started in the last few weeks, and we’re opening more and more software-focused positions here in Barcelona. I really enjoy working with everyone in person; they’re all very friendly and skilled in their roles.
Andriy: The friendly atmosphere among the colleagues from Barcelona really grew during our trip to HQ. And now, we usually meet up on Fridays and spend time talking about non-work-related topics after work. Offline communication like this is really crucial to continue building this positive working atmosphere.
Jordi: It’s great having this time to go for some beers or have chats together in the office. And as more and more people join our collaboration space in Barcelona, we’ll plan other fun things for the whole group.
Can you tell us a bit about what you are working on now?
Jordi: My project is creating a new development platform from scratch. Designing so much from nothing involves a lot of moving parts, which requires a lot of collaboration. It’s a difficult project, but the more difficult the challenge is, the more motivated I get. And I’m inspired even further because Materialise’s products help people. Realizing that I can develop products to improve people’s health encourages me a lot.
Rebecca Frances Cansinos
Jordi Perez Talamino
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