I’ve been in the new job for nearly a fortnight, so I’m taking a tea break to update you all. It’s been pretty straightforward so far. There have been some technical glitches, as is always the case with getting set up on the systems of a large company.
I’ll take some questions. You at the back. Grey shirt, no, you.
Where are you working now?
I now work for Bentley Systems, a software company from Exton, Pennsylvania. Their main products are Microstation, one of the two market leaders in CAD software (my contract includes a non-competition clause that says I’m not allowed to go and work for AutoDesk after this), and ProjectWise, a project data and documentation management system.
I’m based in the Dubai office, on Sheikh Zayed Road, just near the Emirates Towers.
Is it like Bentley the car?
No, different company.
What is your job?
I am a Senior Consultant, working in the Progressive Assurance section, and our product is ComplyPro, a hosted software-as-service environment based on the huge and complex IBM DOORS requirements management system, but with a friendly dashboard and tools to allow projects to get on with managing requirements, without having to deal with the complex operation and maintenance of DOORS.
I will be helping clients get set up, train them, configure their systems, work with sales during the presales phase, and generally travel around and be a helpful little munchkin.
Will there be travel?
Yes. There are a few projects around the place that need attention. I am joining a very small team, and they need me to dive right in and help out. I will need to go to Qatar to help out on the Doha Metro, which will mean I have worked on the same project, in three parts of the for three employers. After that will be Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, which is exciting because I’ve never been that far east. Also mentioned have been Riyadh, somewhere in Australia (also very exciting!), and then of course a couple of things around Dubai.
How is it different from your previous job(s)?
In my previous jobs, I was often responsible for managing requirements using tools similar to ComplyPro, in a project environment. That can be quite stressful, with the emphasis on getting stuff done and out of the door, and sometimes with a tension between trying to do things the “right” way, and getting them done at all.
In this job, I’m with the vendor of those tools. Hopefully I won’t come across that tension, because the client is using the tool already. I’m sure it won’t all be plain sailing, but I needed to get out of projects.
Have there been any problems with the new place so far?
One glitch which caused quite some ripples is that my user name and email address had been set as “Matt Petty”. I requested it be changed to the more legally accurate “Matthew Petty”, especially if that would be shown to clients and so on. It took a few days for the impact of this change to ricochet around the systems. It turns out that this name was chosen because I had entered “Matt” on a form as being a preferred name (in truth I don’t mind Matt or Matthew). I didn’t realize it would be my email address. I feel a little silly asking for this change, especially because of the delays it caused, but it was a reasonable request.
How will you commute?
At the moment I am taking public transport. From my apartment I walk 3 minutes to Jumeirah Beach Residences 2 tram station, and take the tram around the Marina to Dubai Marina tram station (not to be confused with Dubai Marina Mall tram station). There I change to Damac Properties Metro station, and take the Red Line up to Emirates Towers. From there it’s a 5 minute walk to the office.
At the moment traveling like this is fine, because the weather is getting “cooler” as we approach winter. Today it will hit 36°C, which believe me is mild. The walk to the tram, and the walk from the metro to the office, would be nothing if this were a temperate climate. When we get into the nasty months where the heat hits 45°C and the humidity makes you feel like you’re breathing hot treacle, even that short walk might be too much.
That is a big problem that the UAE has – never mind the “last mile” between public transport and your destination, even a 5 minute walk might be intolerable.
That’s about it for now. I try and keep you posted. I’ve got a bunch of little projects I’m working on that I mean to write up here.