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Monthly Archives: November 2012

VMware Foundation: #ContributingCode with SC4G and IDEO.org

Giving back to the community is an important part of VMware’s culture. Through the VMware Foundation, employees have an opportunity to contribute their time, talent and skills to make a difference in their community. We sought to learn more about the Foundation’s #ContributingCode initiative, so we connected with Nicola Acutt, Director of the VMware Foundation, to get her take on this project and Service Learning at VMware. 

 

Tell us a little bit about #ContributingCode?

At VMware, we believe that our people can positively impact their communities by contributing their time and talents. Each employee receives 40 paid “Service Learning” hours a year to volunteer in their community and learn through the experience of giving back.

#ContributingCode is an initiative of the VMware Foundation to connect our talented technologists with skill-based Service Learning opportunities. To do so, we partnered with the SocialCoding4Good network and hosted events such as Tech Talks and Coding Sprints for our employees. Our motivation is to use technology and our collective talents to serve humanity and make a positive contribution to the world around us.

What was this Service Learning project about?

Check out this video below to see how this project took shape.

The project was about tackling a problem by bringing together a bunch of smart VMware engineers and applying the best thinking in human-centered design, rapid innovation, and IT skills. We partnered with SocialCoding4Good and IDEO.org to help an international NGO called Water and Sanitation for the Urban Poor (WSUP) to come up with a creative way to address the pervasive problem of sanitation.

In my mind, this project was a great example of collaboration: WSUP has a gnarly problem; IDEO.org has a human-centered approach to solving problems; VMware has smart people who love to tackle big problems; and, SocialCoding4Good brought us all together.

How did VMware people contribute back?

Our people contributed in several ways. First, to kick off the project, we hosted a Tech Talk with R&D so that people could learn from subject matter experts and gain a deeper understanding of the problem and context. Following the talk, a group of engineers volunteered for a “Design Sprint” with IDEO.org to brainstorm new ways to approach a problem – i.e. connecting humans and technology to map the gnarly issue of open defecation. Using the IDEO method, the volunteers came up with several concepts and a week later, a group of VMware people traveled to IDEO.org’s offices in San Francisco for a “Develop Sprint” to actually build out a functional prototype.

A team from IDEO.org is on its way now to test out the prototype in the field in Kumasi, Ghana. You can track the progress of the project here.

What were the lessons or takeaways? 

Beyond the possibility of applying technology and our talents for social good, I think that there were many lessons or takeaways from this Service Learning project. For some people, it was about understanding the realities of a very serious issue facing 2.3 billion people. I am astounded that there are more people in the world who have access to data on their cell phones than have access to running water and sanitation in their homes. For other people it was about innovation and how the principles of human-centered design can be applied to solving real business problems. As Mike Stunes, a member of VMware’s performance engineering team said: “One interesting takeaway was the continuing refinement of ideas, to better focus on the actual problems they are trying to solve, and the people who are going to benefit from them. Take their cook stove as an example: it’s not about designing a nifty stove, it’s about designing something useful and practical for the people who are ultimately going to benefit from it, and taking their actual needs into account. I think those of us in R&D could apply that to our work at VMware: we need to make sure to keep our focus on knowing our customers and their needs, and building products that are ultimately going to address those needs”.

What makes our #ContributingCode initiative different?

We partnered with SocialCoding4Good to help connect our talented corporate volunteers with organizations using Humanitarian Free and Open Source Software (HFOSS). We wanted to both inspire this HFOSS movement and provide practical opportunities for our people to use their skills, such as Linux, Java, Python, PHP and various frameworks and APIs on “doable” projects.

While several tech companies host “hackathons”, the thing that makes our #ContributingCode initiative different is our commitment to Service Learning as a corporate value. We found that often an unintended consequence of corporate “hackathons” is that products are “developed and dumped”. Because of our commitment to Service Learning, we are helping our partners go beyond these one-off “hackathon events” to more sustainable outcomes by supporting these projects from “development to deployment” because VMware gives our people paid time to contribute.

The project with IDEO.org is a good example of “development to deployment” because, after the IDEO.org team returns from the field, VMware people have the opportunity to continue to help refine the platform using their Service Learning hours.

What can people do if they’re interested in #ContributingCode or using their tech skills to give back?

If you’re inspired to give back, find a technical volunteer project on SocialCoding4Good’s website – it’s a great way to share your talents with the broader community.

You can also follow this particular project here!

 

-The VMware Careers Team

 

 

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VMware University Relations: EMEA Update

The VMware University Relations team fosters relationships with universities, executes recruiting strategies and develops programs that enable VMware to acquire the best university talent around the globe.

 

About VMware University Relations EMEA

Recruiting season is well under way for us here on the VMware University Relations EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) team! We’ve been excited to see such a high level of interest in our Internship and New College Graduate opportunities from talented students across the Region.

With a total of 128 countries in the EMEA Region, you might wonder which particular locations VMware is located in, and more importantly which sites are offering opportunities for students? Well, not quite 128, but we do have an ever-increasing presence in EMEA and are offering opportunities for students in locations including:

  • Ireland – Cork
  • United Kingdom – London, Surrey
  • France – Paris, Grenoble
  • Israel – Herzilya
  • Bulgaria – Sofia
  • Germany – Munich
  • Spain – Madrid
  • Netherlands – Utrecht
  • Russia – Moscow

Here is what a few of our 2012 Interns are saying about us:

“After studying Computer Science and specializing in Computer Systems and Networking, I sought out an internship that would allow me to develop my technical skills. The Quality Engineering team at VMware’s Mobile Virtualization Platform (MVP) provided this opportunity. During my internship, I worked on mobile phone power consumption. This experience at VMware surpassed my expectations; not only did the team members provide invaluable assistance and guidance in my research, day after day they pushed me to achieve my potential so that I could be involved in much bigger and more interesting tasks. At the end of my internship, thanks to the team, I was able to continue working in the MVP’s Quality Engineering team, but this time as a VMware employee. Since then, I’ve been working with several teams of the MVP project and I’ve learned so much from both a technical and a personal point of view. I recently moved to the Horizon Mobile team and started to work on a mobile phone management system.” Matthieu, R&D

“Working as an intern at VMware has been challenging, fun, but most of all, educational. What I have learned during my time at VMware has far exceeded my expectations. I am studying for a Masters in Business Innovation and this internship has given me the opportunity to witness innovation at its source. VMware has a number of impressive mechanisms in place to facilitate idea promotion from within, while also allowing employees to work on open source projects. VMware is one of those companies that will help you grow and develop, based on your education, skills, and interest. There are so many tools to aid personal growth and further learning, such as free online books, training seminars, lunchtime yoga sessions and table tennis! The intern programme in Cork is really exciting, from excursions and barbeques to video-making competitions. It’s about learning, and preparing for your future career, but it’s also about enjoying yourself and getting the most out of the experience!” –Claire, Marketing

Areas of Opportunity

VMware EMEA is looking for students from a broad range of disciplines as we have roles available in R&D, Finance, Technical Support, Legal, Marketing and Business Development – What a choice!

Internships vary in duration from five to twelve months, but no matter how long you are here, your experience will be one to remember. Interns benefit from regular performance reviews, 1-1 mentorship, networking events, social activities, service learning activities and global intern competitions.

The Year Ahead

VMware has already enjoyed on-campus visits to universities in the United Kingdom, Ireland and Bulgaria this season, and we’re looking forward to more visits in the months ahead. If we’re not lucky enough to travel onsite to your University, you can still connect with us on one of our many dedicated University Relations social media platforms to hear about our latest opportunities and on-campus events.

So, what are you waiting for – Apply online today and join VMware’s fun, challenging, creative and innovative environment!

 

-Niamh Lynes, University Relations Recruiter, EMEA

Find Niamh Lynes on:

  

 

 

 

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VMware Office Spotlight: Austin, Texas

With over 50+ locations throughout the world, VMware is truly a global community made of passionate employees who thrive on collaborating together to bring IT industry-changing innovations to life. Each site also carries its own uniqueness, which is why we are highlighting office stories through our VMware Office Spotlight series. Get a flavor for what the VMware Austin office in Texas is like today!

About Austin

VMware’s current Austin office site opened in 2006. Austin is the capital of Texas with a growing population of over 824,205 residents. Home to many technical corporations, the city was dubbed “Silicon Hills” in the 1990s. In addition to housing a variety of tech businesses, Austin is known for its large and diverse music scene, attracting people from around the globe to major events such as South by Southwest and Austin City Limits Music Festival.

With over 600 employees, our Austin office is the hub for employees working in a variety of departments including Inside Sales, Partner Support, Sales Operations, Marketing and Human Resources (Staffing and Shared Services).

Austin is somewhat of an anomaly compared to other cities in Texas as it sits in “Texas Hill Country,” an area comprised of rolling hills made from thin layers of soil atop limestone and granite. Employees can easily enjoy breathtaking views of the rolling Texas hills from our office floors.

Areas of Opportunity 

Through our employees’ passion and persistence to propel the company’s future forward, VMware Austin is now the hub for the Americas (Canada, North America and South America) Inside Sales Engine. It is exciting to see that the spark plug to grow the Americas businesses is now housed right here in Austin, Texas.

Here is what a few Austin employees are saying about us:

“I am going on my ninth year at VMware and have held a number of positions across the organization. Not only does VMware care about its people and products, but they believe and stand behind their core values. It helps that I am passionate about them too, including, Execution, Innovation, and Leadership. I come to work with a smile on my face – proud of my work, my team, the opportunity, and my company.” – Victoria, Director of Inside Sales

“I have seen this company grow over my six years working here and it’s been a great ride! I’ve enjoyed visiting the Headquarters in Palo Alto, California and love to see the remote offices try to mirror that passion for fun, environmental & health consciousness and giving back to the community. Wherever we may fall short, there seems to be someone to help boost us even higher and further than before.” -Georges, Sr. Business Systems Analyst

“VMware has given me many opportunities to grow in my career, and my community. I look forward to every day being a part of such a wonderfully functioning machine!” -Patricia, Staffing Coordinator

Values and culture in action at the Austin office

Passion is a trait that permeates throughout all of our employees here at VMware Austin. Whether an employee is speaking with our partners or customers about who we are or how we can help enable them to be agile, efficient, secure, and fault tolerant in the Cloud era, or connecting with a candidate, their accountability and hard work is clear.

Fostering a meaningful community both within the workplace and among the greater Austin community is a high priority for our employees here at VMware Austin. Employees at the Austin site formed a group called VMware360 to work with the VMware Foundation and provide opportunities for our colleagues to Give Back. The ‘360’ in VMware 360 is significant because it represents the full circle of giving back and the VMware Austin office is located near the Interstate 360 Bridge. Some of our more recent events include the annual Blood Drive and Backpacks fro Bastrop, an event where our summer 2012 Inside Sales Interns partnered with coworkers to raise money and school supplies for the Bastrop Independent School District and CIS Austin. As we head into the Holiday season, we are looking forward to our first office wide event with Caritas, a non-profit organization that currently serves over 20,000 homeless, working poor and refugees in Travis county.

The Year Ahead

We are humbled to see continued opportunity at VMware Austin. With our second office site set to open in November 2012, we look forward to future innovations and fresh perspectives from our colleagues. It is definitely an exciting time at VMware Austin!

 

 

-Price Smith, VMware Careers Community Manager

 

 

 

Current career opportunities in Austin

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VMware Intern Spotlight: Franziska Mielsch – Marketing

VMware interns contribute their intellectual curiosity, innovative ideas and refreshing enthusiasm to VMware every day. Do you want to know what it would be like to walk in their shoes? Let’s find out with the help of Cork-based Marketing intern Franziska Mielsch as she shares five tips for achieving a successful internship experience at VMware!

 

 

 

Five Tips for a Successful Internship Experience at VMware

1. Show your hunger to learn

Whether you are asked to attend a meeting or have the opportunity to ask questions try to be involved as often as possible. The passion and dedication put into your work will not go unnoticed if you are connected with your team.

New office environments can be somewhat intimidating, but don’t let that stop you from showing your hunger to learn. An internship is a chance to gain as much experience as possible. During the beginning of my internship I was afraid that I was bothering my coworkers, but I realised, that everyone wanted to help me succeed. They gladly shared their knowledge and work experience with me. There is no such thing as a dumb question – So just keep asking.

2. Have fun

Yes, an internship requires dedication and teamwork, but at VMware there are various ways in which you can relax and enjoy yourself. The motto, “Work hard, play hard!” is very fitting for this environment.

As an intern, VMware is great about providing activities outside of work related pursuits for you to get involved in. For example, the Cork interns had the chance to create intern t-shirts and a video that highlighted a typical workday. I took part in both activities and I have to say that it was very exciting and a lot of fun. As an intern from abroad, who knew no one in Cork, these activities were a great way for me to meet my fellow interns and make new friends. You can also get involved in the various groups such as the Running Club, or just hang out in the break room where you can play games such as Table Tennis. These activities provide a time to relax which allows you to revisit your work obligations with renewed energy.

3. Make the most out of the opportunity

Use this internship opportunity as a chance to learn about yourself and how you can further develop your skillsets as an employer.

Being intellectually curious is a reputable character trait at VMware. During previous internships, I often felt like I was “just” an intern. At VMware, I learned that my voice was being heard and that I should not be afraid to share my ideas. I realised that an internship is not just about what my employer expects out of myself, but that it is also about what I expect to get out of my job. By scheduling regular meetings with my manager, I was able to get valuable one-on-one time where we I could ask questions and receive feedback on my progress.

4. Be creative and innovative

Sometimes it can be hard to be creative and find the courage to share your ideas with new coworkers. We all have ideas and should not be afraid to explore them. If you suffer from a lack of creativity, brainstorm how you can get there. Take advantage of the variety of internal resources and spaces within the office that VMware provides its employees. You just might find the inspiration that you need!

5. Set your goals

Whether it is learning a new valuable skillset, gaining a better understanding of the industry, creating a portfolio, or networking within the company, take time at the beginning of your internship to set goals.

This way you can walk away from your internship having achieved the set goals that you put in place for yourself. During my first weeks at VMware I spoke with my manager about what I hoped to takeaway from my internship experience. Due to the one-on-one mentorship, I had someone by my side to help guide me through the intern process and achieve my goals.

 

Best of luck!

-Franziska Mielsch

 

 

About Franziska:

Franziska was a 2012 Marketing Intern with the Mozy team at the VMware Cork office in Cork, Ireland.

 

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VMware PhD Intern Spotlight: Inna Rytsareva – Performance Group

VMware interns contribute their intellectual curiosity, innovative ideas and refreshing enthusiasm to VMware every day. Do you want to know what it would be like to walk in their shoes? Lets find out with the help of Palo Alto-based intern Inna Rytsareva as she shares her unique perspective of the VMware internship experience as a Performance Group Intern.

 

While searching for a summer internship, I was hoping to obtain a position in a cutting-edge technology company with strong research initiatives. I wanted to challenge myself in a way where I could be a scientist while still gaining professional experience. It has been more than a month since I graduated from the 2012 VMware Intern class and it is only now that I’ve completely realized how much this summer adventure has exceeded my expectations.

The most important takeaway from this experience for me was a new understanding from the insider perspective, of the industrial research process. The organizational environment is highly dynamic so that it can stay competitive in the knowledge economy. The research component plays a critical role in identifying future prospects as well as going beyond existing concepts.

This summer I was offered an intern position in the VMware Performance Group. This group studies the performance, robustness, and scalability of VMware’s solutions and identifies the need for technology improvements and innovations. Performance Group members work closely with product developers to ensure optimal performance and efficiency of software products. Being a part of this group was a continuous learning process since they work with a wide range of the VMware products groups.

Although my internship project was focused on a small portion of the Performance Group’s obligations, I was able to get a better understanding of the bigger picture and explore the team’s responsibilities by participating in the group’s meetings and talks. Team updates and open discussion of ideas provided me with a comfortable, helpful and friendly environment where I didn’t feel isolated within my internship project. I also had the opportunity to communicate with researchers from other groups, which was crucial as I was able to exchange knowledge and make professional connections.

My internship project, in Data Mining and Machine Learning, was not primarily related to my PhD research, which is focused on Big Data, High Performance Computing and Graph Algorithms. Due to this, I was not only able to challenge myself in areas where I had theoretical knowledge, but also obtain ideas on how I could use this experience in my future research. Moreover, my 12-week internship project allowed me to take a rest from school and “reset” my thoughts for my PhD research, which lead to valuable new ideas.

The PhD Intern Speaker Series was something that I absolutely loved being able to take advantage of. During the PhD Intern Speaker series, various Principal Engineers candidly spoke with us about their careers. It was fascinating and inspiring to listen to these individuals and hear how their career paths have evolved throughout their time here at VMware.

Without a doubt, my summer internship at VMware was beneficial for me in multiple ways. I obtained a profound understanding of an industrial research and software development process, gained valuable experience working in a team environment, explored a variety of VMware Solutions and, of course, met a lot of diverse, intelligent individuals, who helped make my internship an amazing one. Whether you are considering an academic or industrial career path, an internship at VMware will provide you with an experience that will help you make more informed choices about your future career.

 

Inna Rytsareva

 

About Inna:

Inna Rytsareva is a third-year PhD student in Computer Science at Washington State University. She holds a Masters degree in Bioinformatics from Mississippi Valley State University and a Bachelor degree in IT Management from Amur State University, Russia.

 

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My Experience at Grace Hopper 2012 – Lin Huang

VMware interns contribute their intellectual curiosity, innovative ideas and refreshing enthusiasm to VMware every day. Do you want to know what it would be like to walk in their shoes? Let’s find out with the help of Palo Alto-based intern Lin Huang as she shares her unique experience from the 2012 Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing Conference in Baltimore, Maryland.

 

Since attending the 2012 Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing Conference in Baltimore, Maryland I keep telling my friends, “If you have yet to attend the Grace Hopper Conference, you should definitely go!”

The 2012 Grace Hopper Conference was my first time attending this yearly event. Although I have attended several academic conferences before, my experience at this conference was quite special. As a graduate student, I am at the starting point of my career. In order to prepare for life after college I have searched for numerous articles, seminars and workshops to learn more about the necessary skills to successfully look for a job and prepare myself for the workplace environment. While I have found some very helpful information from these resources, I have often felt like there were few key takeaways that would be palpable for my own life. However, the Grace Hopper Conference was unlike any other conference I have experienced. After three short days at Grace Hopper I walked away having gained a multitude of useful skills and experiences that I will never forget.

During the conference a large percentage of the speakers and attendees were women. These women are either actively pursuing a degree in computing or have a current occupation in the computing field. It was highly beneficial to have female speakers as technical discussions outside of the Grace Hopper Conference seldom emphasize the strength of female engineers and give their viewpoints on subject matter in the computing industry. Being surrounding by so many women from diverse backgrounds in computing provided me with the chance to hear various stories on life and work.

While at Grace Hopper my main focus was on the non-technical sessions. The most impressive discussion was the session entitled “Letter to my younger self: things I wish I knew when I first started working”, which reviewed a series of mistakes female engineers usually make in their early career life. It is so true that everyone makes mistakes in almost every aspect of life- career, family, friends, etc. –we’re all human. There were many similarities between the mistakes that the session speakers spoke about with us. Learning about their experiences and observations was important as it showed us ways to avoid similar mistakes within our own lives. The speakers talked about how to plan a career path, maintaining a professional network, and the common mistakes made in each of these areas. The speakers even demonstrated how to negotiate salaries during the discussion, which was an interesting and important communication skill.

Another impressive discussion that I attended was, “Achieving success as an immigrant woman – strengths we bring and obstacles we face”. I attended this one because I am struggling with finding balance and research output in the United States as an international student. All of the panel speakers were immigrants to the U.S. at one point in time. Each speaker candidly spoke about their first impression about the U.S., the difficulties encountered during their career, and the advantages of being an immigrant. I am glad to have had the opportunity to attend this talk because I am facing similar difficulties such as language barriers and culture differences as an international student. I walked away feeling confident that I am not the only one struggling with these problems, and that many women have successfully overcome these obstacles. At the beginning of this session I was unaware that the panel members were all non-native English speakers. However, after hearing their experiences it was clear that they were in fact U.S. immigrants which ended up being a very powerful and encouraging demonstration for the audience.

In the end I would like to give special thanks to VMware and Stanford University for making my trip to Grace Hopper a reality.

 

-Lin Huang, 2012 VMware Itern – MTS – Cloud Platform

 

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