Tools for Working in the Clouds

How we manage to make best-in-business cloud portfolio management software whilst being distributed all over the globe

Who are the Cloudies?

One of the more unusual features of working at RightScale is that not just our software works in the cloud. We want to hire the best employees we can get our hands on, and we realise that these people might not always work near one of our office locations (Santa Barbara in California, and Edinburgh in Scotland). So do we risk losing out on exceptional talent because of this?

We’d be mad to do that!

We want the best talent regardless of location, so for many of our positions we offer the option of working remotely. We affectionately call our remote workers the ‘Cloudies’, and they’re so prevalent that nearly all our engineering teams have at least one remote engineer, and some teams are entirely remote.

We have Cloudies in every timezone of the US, Spain, UK & Belarus. We truly are a global company!

The toys

In order to successfully create the excellent software we’re known for, we use a number of tools to help us work together effectively:

A different workflow

Working this way requires a slightly different workflow to those working in an office together. To demonstrate how these tools are used, I’m going to use myself as an example. I work in one of our distributed teams, operating from our Edinburgh office. Here’s what tools I use a typical day:

RightScale Employee Meetups

It’s all well and good working with people remotely, but its always nice to have a chat over a beer with your collegues. Every year, we run our annual RightScale Employee Meetup (REM) where we fly everybody to our Santa Barbara HQ for a week of activities and collaboration. Activities during the 2014 meetup included BBQs on the beach, a poolside luau party, an all-day hackathon, and RightScalers showing off our karaoke skills (the Edinburgh team picking the most Scottish song available). We also invite over some of our customers to give their honest views on how they use our products, what’s working for them, and how we can make the experience better.

It also means we get to show off what a good-looking team we have by taking our company photo!

Like what you see? We’re hiring!

If you think you could be some of the exceptional talent that we’re looking for at RightScale, we’re hiring for both cloudie and office-based jobs! Check out our jobs page, or email us!