Video: Hiring at an Internet of Things Startup
August Home designs four Internet of Things (IoT) devices (Smart Lock, Doorbell Cam, Keypad, and Connect) that coordinate to allow remote, keyless entry into an owner’s house. IoT is a burgeoning industry, with tech companies big and small interested in releasing their own versions of products that automate core aspects of home life. But how does a tech pro interested in IoT actually “break in”? We spoke to Shawn Yapa, a software engineer for iOS and mobile at August Home, about his interest in the Internet of Things, how he got hired, and what he looks for when hiring engineers. Check out the video above! Yapa joined the company because his friend knew August Home CEO Jason Johnson. Despite a hard interview, he was hired within a week. As a software engineer for iOS and mobile, he now sits on the other side of the table for hiring. Yapa's home is equipped with IoT devices, which is a great way to dogfood his projects. There are many reasons why opening a door with your phone, rather than a key, could prove useful. Managing deliveries is an obvious one—the UPS guy could just place the packages in your vestibule while you’re still at work. Guests can also make themselves at home before you arrive. The Internet of Things offers an extra layer of security, allowing more granular control over who enters a home (the cameras in many IoT setups let owners observe who’s actually in your house). As the Internet of Things evolves, more companies are allowing their proprietary devices to talk to one another. You can ask Alexa to open a door, and have Philips Hue lights turn on after that door opens. That means anyone working in IoT needs to not only know the devices their company produces, but an ecosystem of other products, as well. When applying for an IoT job, certain basics always come into play: be passionate about the technology, and do your best to determine whether you’d be a good culture fit. Yapa says that transparency between the potential candidate and the company's expectations is key.