Neha Das: From QA to Product Management at Komprise

neha_1-scaledNeha Das joined Komprise in 2018 as a Senior QA engineer, based in the Bengalaru office. We asked Neha a few questions about her experience working at Komprise and her career journey so far in the unstructured data management and data storage sectors.

What did you do before joining Komprise and how did you decide that it was a good place for you?

Neha: Before joining Komprise I was a QA engineer at NetApp for five years. I joined NetApp right out of college as an intern. At NetApp, I was working with various data management initiatives, and when the opportunity came from Komprise, it was a natural leap. What convinced me that Komprise would be a good fit was the people I interviewed with; the overall culture and feeling from the team was warm. I felt it would be a great place to work and I was right!

Can you describe your career journey in terms of responsibilities and where you are today?

Neha: As a QA engineer, the focus was on making sure that the delivered features meet the requirements and during testing, finding out if there were any scenarios that were missed in the initial requirements and design. When the opportunity to apply for a product management role came up, I was slightly apprehensive; I wasn’t certain how my experience could help me excel at this new work. After talking to a few people, I decided to go for it and so far, have not regretted the decision. My testing perspective has been useful as I work on new features. I can estimate the design complexity that would be needed, or if there are similar designs that are already in play. There are multiple facets of this new role that are completely new to me including talking to stakeholders, making key decisions for a feature and understanding how to view the product from a customer perspective, but having experience on the engineering side of the product has been beneficial.

Tell me about your day-to-day responsibilities – such as a typical day or week?

Neha: I follow a hybrid model by working from the office two days a week. Since most of the PM team (including UX designers) are in the U.S., my hours are a little irregular. Meetings with the PM team happen late night or early morning whereas the stand-ups with engineering team happen during core workday hours in India. As a product manager, working on a new feature entails talking with developers and designers to come up with requirements and then reviewing and working on the new features and UI mock-ups. I attend the SCRUM standups with the engineering team and if there are any open questions or queries I help resolve them.

What is the best part of your day or in general your job? What really gets you excited and motivated?

Neha: It’s been exciting to build new things: seeing a feature go from the requirements phase on paper to actual customers using it and providing feedback.

What are some challenges of the job?

Neha: We’ve been working with strict deadlines this year for customer deliverables. This means we have multiple back and forth sessions between the teams to make sure we meet the deadlines without missing any requirements and customer use cases. For instance, we had started working on one feature, fleshing out the UX and the requirements and then due to changes in the prioritization we had to leave that and move on to a new project with shorter timelines. There were many last-minute discoveries and questions while testing the feature. While there were moments of stress, we released the feature on time. This experience gave me a quick jump into the responsibilities of being a product manager, which is one of the best parts of working in a startup like Komprise. You get to learn on the job in the best way possible.

What are your career goals and how is Komprise helping you achieve them—or providing a supportive environment for career development/growth?

Komprise really helped me make a career leap from QA to product management. I had great counsel from a lot of peers and managers before I made that switch. After I joined the PM team, the PM leader helped with the knowledge transfer by taking me through the different aspects of the job. He was always available to answer any queries (big or small) about the role and our objectives. Other PM team members were helpful by providing feedback and inputs on things that I may have not considered when working on a new feature.

Finally, what do you enjoy doing in your time off from work?

I enjoy reading, mostly fiction, and cooking for friends and family. I have an 18-month old child and we have been enjoying a lot of story books and nursery rhymes this year.

Getting Started with Komprise:

Contact | Data Assessment