Welcome back to another edition of Inside Drift, where we introduce you to all of the people that make Drift such a great place to work.
So far you’ve met Shannon Donovan, Mary Mitchell, Catherine LaMacchia, Nadine Shaalan, Britnee Laughlin, Carolina Caprile, Michelle Ai, Frank Schepps, Tate Knapp, Zareena Javed, Jason Richman, Stacy Chen, Lillian Frost, Josh Moody, Miles Kane, Lorraine Chon-Qui, Meghan Catucci, Josh Perk, Fiona Heaney, Moe Lawson, and Richard Wright.
Today we’re introducing you to Andrew Jones, a Staff Site Reliability Engineer based out of Tampa, Florida. He is the tech lead for our reliability team that works across engineering to maintain and improve Drift’s quality of service. Andrew regularly uses our Tampa Conversation Space as an escape from his chaotic home which consists of two toddlers and a loud dog. When he’s not helping fix issues across the Drift systems, you can find him at a USF sporting event with his family.
Ready to meet Andrew? Let’s go ⚡
Editor’s note: The following has been edited and condensed for clarity.
Kaitlyn Martins: Hi Andrew, thanks for chatting with me. Can you tell me a bit about what you do at Drift?
Andrew Jones: As a Staff Reliability Engineer (SRE), my primary focus is improving the way we react to issues in Drift’s systems. For any experienced engineer, there’s no doubt whether a failure will occur — they always find their way through. My team learns from past experiences to decrease the time it takes to recover and increase the time between these failures.
We build tools that allow engineers to answer a wide range of questions about their applications. We leverage these same tools to build monitoring that captures issues before they impact our customers.
Kaitlyn: What does your day-to-day typically look like?
Andrew: I strike a balance between reactive work, which keeps our systems running smoothly in the present, and projects that ensure our stability in the future. On the reactive side, my time is often spent assisting engineers with troubleshooting and analyzing recent alerts to confirm we’re notified about the right information. My project-based work involves adding high-quality data points into our observation tools and improving our engineering processes around incident response, preparedness, and testing.
Of course, none of this work occurs in a silo. I find myself collaborating with colleagues across the product organization so that I can carve the best path forward.
Kaitlyn: What kind of impact does the work you do at Drift have on the company and our customers?
Andrew: I see my team’s work as impacting two different sets of customers that are both incredibly important: Drift customers and Drift engineers. The systems that we put in place ensure Drift customers are receiving the best experience possible with their Drift product. For engineers, our work has a positive impact on their work-life which we’re driven to improve every day.
Kaitlyn: Your team is hiring right now. Why is now a great time for someone to join Drift, particularly in engineering?
Andrew: I joined Drift a little over a year ago and have had the time of my life 😁
In that past year, the company has grown significantly and shows no signs of slowing down. Now is the perfect time for a person to join what I believe are still the early days and experience the whirlwind of hypergrowth.
In engineering, there are tons of challenges you’ll get to take on. We’re already operating at scale and we’re continuing to raise the bar on what that means. Our teams have their sights set on some ambitious projects that I’m sure we’ll all be proud of past the finish line.
Kaitlyn: What is a fun fact that people might not know about you?
Andrew: A lot of people here already know about my (now defunct) cookie business.
But most people don’t know that I got my start in desserts much earlier. I worked my way through college at a Cold Stone where I made over 10,000 gallons of ice cream over four years. Yes, I proudly sang and danced with every tip.
Kaitlyn: When you aren’t working, what can we find you doing?
Andrew: My family and I are huge sports fans. My wife and I both attended the University of South Florida and have had countless date nights at USF sporting events. Now that we have children (ages two and four), we’re known as the couple chasing kids around at all USF football, basketball, and soccer games.
Kaitlyn: Finally, what advice do you have for prospective Drift candidates?
Andrew: Remember, while we’re interviewing you, you’re also interviewing us. When we ask things like, “What questions do you have for me?” get into the stuff that’s important to you! During the interview, I want to provide you with as much information as possible to help you understand if and why Drift is the company for you.