Meet Dinusha – Business Development Manager

Dinusha brings his best to the office each day and expects those around him to do the same, but that’s not hard to do when Dinusha is everyone’s biggest cheerleader. Always the first to recognize others for their achievements, CMiC employees can count on Dinusha for positivity, advice and a good laugh.

When did you join CMiC and why?

I joined CMiC in 2016 after finishing my degree at York University. I was looking for a job in technology and emerging markets, and I found CMiC was hiring. I liked the challenge of a new industry, since I have never worked in the construction space before. I enjoy new challenges and this opportunity sounded like the perfect fit for me.

What is your role at CMiC?

I am the Business Development Team Lead. I currently manage a team of Business Development Representatives (BDRs) who are the first faces prospects ‘meet’ at the company. We support the sales department by prospecting potential new customers. My day-to-day includes helping my team structure their day and coming up with creative ideas so they can book meetings with potential clients. Recently, I have been focusing on training the BDR team to use new technologies to successfully get that meeting.

What do you enjoy most about working with the BDR team?

Every day is a new challenge, and I truly enjoy working with my team. They adapt quickly—I can honestly say that they’re doing better than me when I first started as a BDR! Working with my team makes coming to work enjoyable and it’s because we all share the same energy and enthusiasm for what we do. We all have a singular goal in mind and that is to be as successful as we can be generating as many possible opportunities for our sales team.

Share with me your best CMiC memory.

It’s not a specific memory but a general experience: I’m always laughing and have a smile on my face at work. In the office, I sit in a central area, so you can say I hear all the ‘water cooler’ talk. Luckily, I’m surrounded by positive people and it makes me genuinely happy to be around them.

Where is the best lunch spot?

I make my own lunches most days, but I would probably go for sushi if I decided to go out. Aji Sushi is a great quick choice nearby or Sandra’s for homecooked Italian food. For a downright delicious burger, go to Fresh Burger.

What do you listen to on your morning commute?

A mix of hip-hop, house and techno. It gets me amped up and ready to start my day. I have a belief that the song I walk into the office with is the energy I bring for the rest of the day, so my morning ritual includes listening to a high tempo, high energy song. I also use my morning commute to read and listen to construction-related news to stay up to date on the changing landscape.

Go-to CMiC office snack?

I would say the almond milk in the fridge for my protein shakes. I also like to make myself peanut butter jelly sandwiches.

What is your favourite part of the day?

When we book a meeting! It fires me up. You could say that we chase that feeling, and I love amping up the team when we do it.

I also enjoy the lunch hour because I can spend time with the team on a more personal level. We’ve truly grown as a family.

As Chairperson of the Social Purpose Committee, what was the highlight of this year?

We successfully partnered with Building Up, a social contractor in Toronto that uses construction projects as a vehicle to prepare people with barriers for careers in the industry. Not only have we supported them with a financial commitment, but we have provided resources to help their trainees in areas of their lives beyond ‘work.’

I am extremely proud of the response by CMiC employees who stepped up to help. Whether it was the various raffles we hosted throughout the year or volunteering their time, we generated a lot of employee and community interest this year. We are always looking for fresh ideas and partnerships—so please reach out if you would like to get involved!

Based on our current trajectory, I am certain we will be even more successful next year.

Any tips for someone looking to join the CMiC team?

Take your time to understand the system. It is a very robust platform, so understand that you won’t have it all figured out on your first day. With that being said, the benefits of the vast platform bring a lot of value to the industry and to our clients. Believing in CMiC’s value to the industry will help as you grow into your role.

Meet Jonathan – Solutions Consultant

Granola Grazer. Smooth operatorCommitted to committees.  

 ‘Jonathan Sheen’ is familiar name in the companypeek into any employee’s inbox and you’ll find his name on almost every committee-related email. He has earned the reputation of ‘Jonathan Sheen on the social committee’ for his part in organizing the annual company holiday party. He’s always the first person to put his hand up to volunteer for a committee at CMiC, but that’s only if the formation of that committee wasn’t his idea to begin with.  

When did you join CMiC and why? 

I joined CMiC 8 years ago. I was looking online for a role at a software company coming out of my computer science program at the University of Toronto. When I came in for an interview, I enjoyed the conversations I had with my interviewers so much that it ultimately confirmed for me that CMiC is where I wanted to work.  They gave me a tour of the office and introduced me to the people I would be working with. I left with the impression that the company was super cool and cared about finding like-minded people. 

What is your role at CMiC? 

originally joined CMiC as a Product Analyst and moved to be Solutions Consultant. As an SC, my job is to discover the client’s unique business processes and build a sample snapshot to showcase how our software can complement their needs. This can be a challenge sometimes. Every company is slightly different, and we find a way to show how we can simplify and streamline their processes as much as possible.  

Sometimes we need to go onsite to map and present the solution that we have. This is nice because it gives us the opportunity to travel instead of sitting in the office day in and day out. 

What is your best client-facing story? 

Prior to meeting any clients in person, a lot of planning and prep-work needs to take place. The best moment is during the presentation, when I see that all the effort put into it has paid off. It is all in the body language! Nods of agreement and confirmations of their understanding is what I look for. There was a time it went so well, the client offered to take us to a nice dinner afterwards.  

Share with me your best CMiC memory. 

The company holiday party I planned in 2018I spearheaded the planning that year and coordinated most of the logistics on my own. The best moment was seeing it all come together and everybody enjoying themselves that night. Oh, and the moment when I surprised everyone with a second Dyson hairdryer during the raffle draw. Needless to say, it was a coveted item by the ladies of the company.  

Name all of the committees that you’re on 

Social Committee; JHSC (Joint Health and Safety Committee); First Aid; Corporate Social Responsibility Committee; Fire Wardens.  

*I asked Jonathan which committee is his favorite* 

My heart says social committee, but my brain says first aid because it’s more important. 

Where are the best lunch spots? 

Centre Street Deli for smoked sandwiches 

Burger’s Priest for burgers  

Sofras for good Turkish food 

Roti in Jane and Finch 

If I don’t go out for lunch, I eat lunch at my deskIn the hustle and bustle of the day, a quiet mid-day meal is exactly what I need to refresh and rewind. Of course, this is also contributed to the fact that I eat my lunch at 11am and no one else is eating lunch at that time.  

I’m also known to make yogurt parfaits with the granola in the office. I bring my own yogurt and mix it with the granola and the fruit of the week in the kitchen. 

What do you listen to on your morning commute? 

I listen to the radio on my drive into the office. I’m a channel flipper—but no rap, ugh. Once I find a song, I go into autopilot and use that time to think about the dayI can’t think when someone is talking, so I do my best thinking to music 

Go-to CMiC office snack? 

Usually Dinusha’s lunch. *A joke directed at very concerned Dinusha (our Business Development Lead), who was putting his lunch in the fridge 

Like I already mentioned, I make my own yogurt parfait (yogurt, blueberries, and granola) using the granola in the kitchen. 

What is your favourite part of the day? 

I would say my favourite part of the week is board game night. Being a software company, we are honestly just a bunch of geeks. When things get competitive, we don’t fight to settle the scorewe play a game to earn the glory. Employees are invited to bring their board games to the officebut we also have an impressive collection at my desk. The only rule is that we avoid Monopoly and Risk style games. Instead, wplay more obscure games like Codenames, Catan or Sushi Go!. My favourite game is Codenames because you can theoretically play with an unlimited number of players and you are always thinking throughout the game 

Any tips for someone looking to join the CMiC team? 

To be successful, it requires an open mind to learn whatever you need to learn, especially to understand the software itselfYou must have good communication skills because it really goes a long way to being able to talk to the customers and members of your team. 

What is a common misconception about the search for a new software? 

There’s this misconception that searching for a software is a daunting task. Well – it is not a misconception! Do you remember going from Windows 7 to Windows 10 and how much you dragged your feet? But once you have the right mind set and see what the newest bells and whistles are, then you just jump on board! 

Bonus Question: How do you keep your hair like that? 

I put gel in it. I have bone straight hair. 

Meet Majdi – Product Development Manager, Mobile 

Majdi is someone who exercises his body as much as he exercises his mind as the product development manager at CMiC. In preparation for this interview, I asked other employees what they would like to know about Majdi. Everyone replied, “his workout routine”—so here it is, along with other reasons why he’s a great developer and key member of the CMiC team.  

When did you join CMiC and why? 

I joined CMiC in June of 2007. I was working at Accenture at the time and was looking for a change of pace. I already lived in the York area because I attended York University. I saw the job posting for CMiC and thought the role was interesting (and being close to home would be a bonus). I applied and got the job. 

What is your role at CMiC? 

I am the product development manager focused on our mobile product. My daily responsibilities include assigning tasks, directing members of the team in terms of how to accomplish their tasks, and providing support to solve technical problemsI also spend a lot of time researching what’s new and how to improve what we do to continue developing the mobile application. 

Where is the best lunch spot? 

Thai Bamboo on Steeles and Keele. They have a pickled pork dish with coconut fried rice and fried peanuts (Nam Khao). I order it all the time.  

What do you listen to on your morning commute? 

If I take the bus, I listen to Spotify. Drake is apparently my top artist this decade. Otherwise, I listen to a wide mix of genres: soca, jazzreggae, dance hall, classical, EDM, and progressive house.  

I have a pretty short commute compared to most employees. If I drive, it takes 7 minutes; walking is 35 minutes; and the bus is 30-40 minutes (including the average wait). 

What are your favourite aspects of mobile development versus web? 

I don’t necessarily have a preference of one over, but I would say that mobile is more challenging because of the different devices involved, which means different architecture and platforms. This can be frustrating, especially when working with Apple because their products are technically closed and must be in their ecosystem to function. It’s more of a challenge, but I wouldn’t say I prefer it over web. There are always different restrictions, but at its core, the process is the same.  

But what I can comment on is what I enjoy most about development. I get intrigued when I have a problem to solve. This isn’t limited to only development, but I also apply this to renovation projects at home. The commonality between the two is the challenge of figuring out how to do something and determining the steps to accomplish it. It gets my brain ticking.  

What do you put in your protein shake? 

I don’t drink protein shakes—actually, I’ve never taken any workout supplements in my life. My mom is a dietician and her advice to me was to fuel my body through food. I studied kinesiology at York after computer science but stopped after two years. Even though I didn’t finish that degree, I still gained a good understanding of health and physiology. Unless you’re a professional athlete, you’re more than fine with the nutrients you’re getting through what you eat (as long as it’s a balanced meal).  

Remember, there are no unhealthy foods, only unhealthy diets. Fun fact: you need carbs after a workout, not protein. Protein takes a couple hours to digest, when what you need is quick energy after a workout.  

Go-to CMiC office snack? 

I bring my own bag of fruit with me every day. For a lot of people who sit around me, they mention my area smells like citrus in the winter. I like clementines, oranges and mandarins when they’re in season. In the summer, I bring grapes, berries, and bunch of tropical fruits. I like rambutans and jackfruit too. 

What is your favourite part of the day? 

Going to the gym after workI go to Lifetime Athletic on Hwy 7 and Weston Rd. 

What are your favourite mobile apps? 

*Swipes through phone* SpotifyWhatsApp, Microsoft Teams, NBA Live Mobile. Realtor (I like to see what houses are available) 

Best basketball team? 

The Raptors, come on. 

What is your exercise routine? 

Right now it’s not as regimented as it used to be. When I was training for basketball, it was very regimented because I was training specific muscle groups, etc… Now it’s a mix of everything. My typical workout includes a 30-minute warmup, working out—whether it’s weights, swimming or any activity for at least an hour—followed by stretching for half an hour. In total, I’m usually at the gym for 2 hours.  

Meet Taz – Senior Manager of Customer Success

#1 fan of Harry Potter, the Toronto Raptors and CMiC customers.

Taz joins us as the first member of our Customer Success team. He comes with a can-do attitude and the dedication to tackle any client case. If he’s not at his desk (which he most likely isn’t), he’s in a meeting or on site with a client. How he has his boundless energy even with a 4-year-old daughter, we will never know…

When did you join CMiC and why?

I joined CMiC in September of 2019. When I interviewed, I quickly got the sense that this was a growing organization with a strong company culture, interested in finding ways to become more customer centric. I saw the Customer Success Manager role as an opportunity to continue driving that culture through my interactions with customers and with the team I’ve been tasked to build out. I felt empowered by the trust CMiC put in me.

What is your role at CMiC?

I am the Customer Success Manager. I am responsible for the proactive development and maintenance of client relationships—I like to describe it as finding out what clients want before they know what they want.

Another aspect of my role is to act as the advocate for customers within our organization. My goal is to empower other teams with the information they need regarding customers in order to help them drive ‘customer success’ in their own ways.

Where is the best lunch spot?

I bring a lunch to work every day, but sometimes I like to take a walk to the nearby university campus for a bite. It makes me feel like a student again seeing the young kiddies.

What do you listen to on your morning commute?

It’s a 20-minute drive from my place to the office (sometimes 30, depending on traffic). I listen to a combination of audio books, podcasts or ‘hype’ music to get me going for the day. What I listen to depends on the day I’m going to have: if I’m interacting with a customer, I listen to music to get ‘hyped’ in the morning (because I need the energy). If it’s a learning day or product day, I listen to audio books or podcasts about client success.

What does customer success look like to you?

First and foremost, my priority is to make sure our customers stay our customers. If that is working, the next step is to understand how to elevate their experience, whether that be through health checks, coordinating internal resources or delivering outcomes for our customers.

I’m service oriented, so it’s in my nature to go above and beyond in everything I do: emails, phone calls, or face to face interactions—you name it. I’ll never let anybody go unanswered.

What can customers expect in the coming months?

They can expect to hear from me a lot. They can expect a lot more information regarding what CMiC is working on and what is to come. We want to ensure customers have the information they need to make informed decisions.

Go-to CMiC office snack?

The raisin bread with peanut butter and jam. Super light toast, or else I’m not eating it. But that’s only if there’s raisin bread because that bread goes fast.

What is your favourite part of the day?

The days I come in early at 7:30 AM and nobody else is in the office yet. I get to do a lot of catchup, and it’s great because I don’t get pulled in different directions. It’s just me, my coffee and my laptop.

Tell us your best customer success story.

When I was analyzing some of the early data, we identified customers that had zero to little engagement with CMiC. We created an informal campaign to reach out to these customers that included a link to my calendar. There was one client that immediately booked time in my calendar. During our phone call, I realized we had a bit of work to do with the account. By the end of the week, we worked through most of her issues and introduced her to User Voice and CMUG as additional avenues for help. This was a great example of us turning data into information, which helped us have a direct impact on this customer’s experience.

Plus, she called me “the bomb.” I promised to make things happen for her, and we were able to follow through.  So, it’s little things like this that will go a long way with our customers. It was a happy moment and a great win for me in my new role.

What do you want customers to know about you?

We have a lot in store but require a bit of patience. The changes won’t happen overnight, but we’ll definitely get there!

Meet Shirin – Director, Field Marketing & Events

Producer of CONNECT, office chai and good times.

It’s rare for Shirin to repeat an outfit and even rarer for her to repeat how she executes an event. She comes to CMiC with a wealth of experience running some of the largest international conferences, which shows in the flair she adds to the CONNECT Annual User Conference. It was hard to grab a time with Shirin, especially with the conference just around the corner, but she is never one to turn down a moment for a fresh cup of office chai.

When did you join CMiC and why?

I joined CMiC in February of 2018. What cemented my decision to come on board was my conversation with Jeff Weiss, CMiC’s chief revenue officer. My criteria for joining any organization is to see that there is a clear vision for growth. The fact that the CRO, who is responsible for revenue growth, could confidently speak to that impressed me because it’s not something you normally discuss during interviews.

I was initially nervous because I never worked in the construction industry before, however, because my background was in IT and technology, I saw many opportunities for growth at CMiC. I gained a lot of industry knowledge within 6 months and found myself enjoying the new challenge.

What is your role at CMiC?

I am the Director for Field Marketing and Events. I am responsible for all client-facing events, including conferences & tradeshows, online events like webinars, executive board meetings, member of the CMUG steering committee, and, of course, CONNECT.

Organizing events has always played a big role in my career. At my previous organization, I was the head of marketing for MENA (Middle East and North Africa), with a specialty in client success, advocacy marketing and audience acquisition through events. I believe events and tradeshows are one of the most effective business tactics—an insight I gained from having worked on both sides as an organizer and exhibitor. I’ve organized the GITEX tech tradeshow in the Middle East, which gave me a lot of great ideas on how to grow CONNECT and events at CMiC more generally.

What is your favourite CONNECT memory?

It was seeing a full house on day one of the 2018 conference before the start of the opening remarks. Watching everything come together and feeling the energy of the room brought me a lot of satisfaction and relief!

Fun fact about the 2018 conference: It was the first time I ever organized a large-scale event with a core team of 3 people! It’s easy to underestimate all the moving parts and logistics of CONNECT but running it with only 3 people and at over 500 attendees was a first in my book. But we made it happen!

Where is the best lunch spot?

Lately it has been Souk because it reminds me of the ka’ak sandwiches back home in Dubai. I recommend the haloumi cheese and pesto spread.

In the office I usually eat in the lunchroom on the 3rd floor. It is a positive space for employees, customers and even family. I have brought my daughter, who enjoys the space if she has to wait for me to finish up at the office.

Share with me one secret about this year’s CONNECT

The content at this year’s CONNECT will be equivalent to a full training session from our Services and Product teams. That’s because the agenda has been developed a bit differently this year; we took the entire Enterprise suite of CMiC and created sessions around each functionality, catering to specific job roles. Many of these sessions are brand new and were created from the feedback we received at last year’s CONNECT. We also took the opportunity to create sessions that cater to the ways our clients work, such as with third-party partners and APIs.

We have something for everyone this year, no matter where in the corporate structure you fall or your job function. I promise that you will be busy and will always have a session to attend!

How has CONNECT changed since you began organizing the event?

We introduced Learning Labs in 2018, which were completely sold out in their first year. It helped us understand that there’s a demand from our users for workshops and hands-on instruction, and we plan to deliver that again this year.

As with any event that grows larger in scale, it becomes more difficult to maintain the personal touch. Last year alone, we grew the event by 37% and doubled our exhibitor showcase (the largest growth in CONNECT history). To help maintain the close-knit community feel CONNECT is known for, we introduced a one-on-one attendee meeting tool in our conference app. This allows attendees to look up other attendees and schedule time with them. We’re happy to be bringing it back again this year.

How do you envision CONNECT to change in the future?

My goal is to make CONNECT a 1000+ attendee event in the next 5 years. As we continue to expand internationally as a company, I hope to also grow CONNECT into an international event. I dream of Barcelona one day!

Short-term goals include recognizing client achievements at CONNECT during an awards night and expanding Learning Labs into a full day. Because we’re always looking for the latest and greatest content, we never shy away from trying new things. So, stay tuned!

What makes CONNECT unique compared to other large-scale events you’ve organized?

At other user conferences I’ve been to, it’s unheard of to have more than a fraction of the host organization in attendance. Each year we send about 50% of CMiC employees to CONNECT. That’s because we want to ensure that every client touch point (i.e. account executives, solutions consultants, account managers, etc.) are all available for our clients to talk to. We also send members of our support and programming teams to CONNECT, which are often roles that don’t travel at other organizations.

What are you most looking forward to at this year’s CONNECT?

I love Halloween, so the CONNECT Halloween Spooktacular evening event. Expect plenty of surprises!

Otherwise, it’s always exciting to see the fruits of your labor and see it all come to life. I look forward to seeing happy smiles, and I hope to hear from all attendees that they will come back next year!

Any tips for clients?

I urge all organizations to attend the conference as a team. In order to maximize your learning at CONNECT, we suggest ‘dividing and conquering’ through 35+ sessions. You’re going to learn a lot this year and having others to share the ‘work’ will ensure that you don’t miss anything.

Also, don’t forget to rate your sessions and provide feedback in the CONNECT mobile app. We’re always looking for client feedback to ensure we improve CONNECT each year!

Meet Maria – Database Architect

Official mother of @winterlabradoodle. Unofficial guardian of CMiC Tools. Longest running holiday door prize champion.

If you ask anybody in the office about Maria, the response you’re going to get is, “I love Maria!!!” And how can you not when her laugh is as infectious as her personality. Always the first on the dance floor and to answer your tools-related questions, she’ll quickly make her passion for both known.

When did you join CMiC and why?

I joined sometime in December in 2003 after moving to Toronto from Colombia in 2001. I studied engineering back in Colombia and worked in software development using Oracle tools. I took a course at the University of Toronto and was placed in a co-op position at CMiC right after my studies. I got a contract a couple of months later, and I’ve been here ever since!

What is your role at CMiC?

I am a Database Architect for CMiC Tools. As one of the first members on this team, I designed and wrote most of the database that supports the tools in CMiC, like the Console, Lite Editor, Program Builder and UIRuntime engine. Because of this knowledge, I also provided training to application developers, support, consulting and even to some of our customers. Today, I no longer do training but rather my focus is on the database design, performance and development.

I’ve moved a lot within the company during my long tenure—14 years now! In the past, I was the team lead for the Assets programming group and the CRM programming group team lead at another point. But when the opportunity to write our Development Tools appeared, I took it, as that would allow me to go full time into programming. Programming is my true passion (I think of it like a puzzle—and I love puzzles!), and it was also a great opportunity to write a product from scratch.

Regardless of my position, I get to talk to a lot of people across different departments. Many people come to me for support about our Tools product.

What was the most interesting program you’ve made so far in CMiC?

I would say the entire Tools set because I know how much work has gone into it, having been involved since the beginning. We encountered our fair share of issues and missing features but having the mindset of a developer means that we can help to devise practical solutions. My long tenure at CMiC was helpful because I understand how things should run and what the developers’ needs are.

Share with me your best CMiC memory.

The holiday party each year because I can connect with the colleagues I don’t see on a day-to-day basis. But I have to be honest: I used to like the holiday parties better when there were less people because I would always win the door prize! Especially in the last two years we’ve really grown—so now I don’t win! I’m joking, I love the fact that the CMiC family is welcoming new members, haha.

*Some of the prizes Maria has won: voucher for $250 hotel stay in Niagara Falls, various gift cards, an iPod Mini.

Where is the best lunch spot?

Genji Sushi close by or Sofra Mediterranean, where I typically order the lentil soup. It’s very good. I always make sure to go with someone else, so I have someone to split the kafta kabab with.

What do you listen to on your morning commute?

I take the subway into work because I live downtown. The subway station is only two minutes from my house. During my commute, I listen to music or read. I’m currently reading Becoming by Michelle Obama.

Go-to CMiC office snack?

I always reach for the fruit, especially the bananas. I love mangos but we don’t have those in the office… yet (crossing my fingers!).

What’s your favourite programming language.

PL/SQL. I think it is a simple and powerful language, and it is one of the pillars of our system. I use it every day and I like that it doesn’t require a special editor.

What is your favourite part of the day?

Lunch! It’s when I get to talk to other people. And yoga because it’s super relaxing for me. I manage to really disconnect for the 60 minutes of class—that’s assuming I make it. I always tell myself that “I’m going!” to yoga at 11 o’clock, which then turns into a “I think I’m going?” at 11:30… then an “okay, I’ll keep working” at 11:50. Oops!

Any tips for someone looking to join the CMiC team?

Come with an open mind to learn about what we do. As a developer, it’s important to come ready to absorb everything because—despite the programming languages being the same—how we do things and the processes may be different from what you’re used to.

I’m an example of the opportunities to move around and join different departments at CMiC. It also helps that everyone is cool, welcoming and helpful. Lots of learning and fun to be had—I wouldn’t have stuck around for 14 years if there wasn’t!

What do you do for fun?

I play recreational ultimate once a week. I also love dancing. Any opportunity to dance, I will take it. I also love reading and, above all else, my dog. He is a Labradoodle named Winter, who I bring to my office sometimes (so stop by and say ‘hi!’).

What is a common misconception about programmers?

That they are boring geeks who don’t like to do fun things. I don’t understand where that comes from because most of the programmers I know are fun. My team has a fun dynamic and we’re a cool team overall. We often go out for lunch together and sometimes beers after work. I’m the unofficial social committee for my team (fun fact: I was a part of the CMiC Social Committee back in the day, but I’ve since passed the torch along!).

Meet Shimul – Co-op Project Coordinator

Ryerson University co-op student. Daytime coordinator. Nighttime procrastinator.

Shimul is an energetic co-op student joining us for 8 months from Ryerson University in Toronto. Even while juggling her licensing exams and a part-time job in addition to her project coordinator role at CMiC, she comes to the office every day with a positive energy and ‘can-do’ attitude. Quickly becoming an integral part of the Services team, we are asking Ryerson if we really must give her back.

What is your role at CMiC?

I am a co-op project coordinator on the Global Services team.  I work with issue tracking, project implementation and creating documents/reports.

I come as a student from the Ted Rogers School of Management, within the School of Accounting and Finance, at Ryerson University.

When did you join CMiC and why?

My first day of training was in May of 2019. I joined CMiC because I was interested in the consulting world and knew that CMiC had opportunities to work with clients in both the enterprise and cloud environments. Ultimately, I was looking to diversify my experience as much as possible.

Also, during my interview, I recognized the start-up like environment here at CMiC. A company’s culture is a priority for me, and I liked that CMiC has a culture of learning.

How did you hear about the internship opportunities at CMiC?

As an accounting and finance student, I wanted to explore options within the consulting industry to work toward my goal of becoming a forensic accountant. I was looking to join a company that truly helps their employees develop professionally and personally.

I saw CMiC and felt like I should go for it because it would be a unique opportunity to explore construction and technology—two industries I may never get to explore if I continue down a traditional ‘accounting and finance’ path. As I did more research, I realized that the opportunity at CMiC will still help me stay competitive by developing many important soft and hard skills that are applicable to my finance courses and, realistically, any career down the road.

What do you like best about being an intern at CMiC?

  1. I love the people I work with. They are super caring and inspiring. Everyone wants to ensure that I’m having a great experience during my time at CMiC. My team especially is very nurturing.
  2. The yoga at lunch twice a week and the great office snacks!

Where is the best lunch spot?

I love Freshii. If I’m feeling healthy, I’ll go for the Fiesta Salad with kale and extra salsa fresca and tofu. My backups are the Buddha’s Satay and Oaxaca bowls.

In the office, I like to eat on the patio.

What do you listen to on your morning commute?

If I’m taking public transit, I like to sleep during my morning commute. Otherwise, if I’m working that evening at my part-time job, I will drive so that I can get to work after work, haha.

What skills are you developing during your term at CMiC?

I’m learning to read between the lines, especially with issue tracking. I’m also learning general project management skills like implementation strategies, seeing the ‘bigger picture,’ and how to be proactive.

Go-to CMiC office snack?

Maranda from marketing’s baking. She brings the best treats in the office, girl. The cereal or fruit offered in the kitchen are also good too. Oh, and the variety of tea options is impressive.

What is your favourite part of the day?

Lunch! Because I get to hang out with everyone. Or yoga time because it’s when I feel the most zen.

Any tips for other interns?

I would tell anybody looking for an internship to go ahead and apply to CMiC! Not only will it be a worthwhile experience, but the opportunities here are unique. You get the best of both worlds at CMiC—a startup like culture but the standards of a corporate environment. Also, working with CMiC’s international clients means you gain global experience.

Meet Jim – Senior Development Manager

Self-proclaimed geek: Sci-fi, LEGO and a lifetime of programming.

As CMiC’s longest tenured employee, Jim is a true jack of all trades at the organization. From mowing the company lawn to being involved in almost every aspect of CMiC’s design, he is the friendly keeper of CMiC legend and lore. His office door is open for your programming questions or for a quick company history lesson!

When did you join CMiC and why?

I joined on June 1, 1980, back when the company was known as ‘Computer Methods.’ I was a student looking for my first real summer job. I didn’t want a job lifting heavy objects all day, so I leaned on the fact I had been programming my high school’s Commodore PET computers for two years. I saw ‘Computer’ in CMiC’s company name and arranged a meeting directly with the owner, Allen Berg. I was lucky that he took a chance on me, even though I was still in Grade 11. To test my commitment, he had me mow the office lawn on Friday mornings.

After proving myself, the programming manager got me to rewrite the Accounts Receivable module on the IBM 5110. I think it was a throwaway project that he never expected anything from, but after 5 weeks, Allen asked me to stop mowing on Fridays to strictly focus on programming. By the end of the summer, I was invited to work part-time while finishing up my Grade 12 year.

I’ve been working 40-hours a week since graduating.

What is your role at CMiC?

I work on projects with clients regarding application design or reporting for internal research and development. I’m often called in to help with urgent issues or to verify CMiC myths because I’m the longest tenured employee.

If we are getting technical, over the years, I have also been involved in database design, Oracle reports, Oracle forms, job billing, data conversion, imaging, workflow, Jaspersoft iReports conversion, customer upgrades, custom client work, business intelligence…and the list goes on.

How has your role and the company evolved during your time here?

I was hired as a junior programmer and worked my way up to managing groups and projects today.

The biggest change I’ve seen at CMiC is how much we’ve grown. We started as a small company where we knew everyone by name. Today, we are growing so rapidly, it’s impossible to keep track of every new employee—and that’s just in the programming department! In that department alone, I joined when it was only 35 programmers… today it’s over 100!

Share with me your best CMiC memory.

This starts off as a sad story, but it becomes uplifting, so bear with me:

On September 11, 2001, we hosted our American clients in Toronto for our annual CONNECT User Conference. After the news about the attacks in New York City was known, CONNECT was cancelled. Many of our American clients were unable to return home, as all flights to the United States were grounded. CMiC employees jumped in to help attendees get in contact with their friends and family, find accommodations and transportation, and in some cases, drive them to the Buffalo border to get them home.

Although the event was tragic, we saw the strength of the community our clients and CMiC have created that day.

Where is the best lunch spot?

In the beginning, there were a dearth of places to eat.

But over time, many great spots have come and gone. My favorite (a long time ago) was an Italian lunch spot called “Amici” that was just across the street from the office. They had the best salads and veal sandwiches—it’s too bad they closed.

What do you listen to on your morning commute?

I like to listen to CBC 99.1 for my update on what is happening here and around the world.

Go-to CMiC office snack?

Coffee. It is the perfect conduit of cream and sugar.

What is your favourite part of the day?

First thing in the morning. I normally get more done without distraction then.

What is your favourite programming language?

I like SQL for its elegance at retrieving data logically. I also like PL/SQL for its formal definition (based on ADA) and its seamless integration with SQL.

What do you do to destress?

Enjoy life. Between my hobbies and my family, I let the stresses melt away for another day.

Any tips for someone looking to join the CMiC team?

My role has changed so much since 1980—so much so that it seems like I’m starting a new job every 2 to 4 years. With that being said, if you are interested in a career here long term, be willing to learn. Read up on new technologies that CMiC is using (or should consider) and learn about the myriad of CMiC applications. The more you learn, the more you can expand your footprint and earn more responsibility.

 

 

Meet Steve – Director of Product Management

Lover of product, podcasts and pup named Spencer.  

It sometimes feels like Steve is everywhere, but it’s really because he is. As the Director of Product Management, he is with clients, developers, the CEO, marketing… and somehow still has time to lead a webinar on CMiC Mobile Field. Recognized for his strong work ethic, Steve is an example of the unique career paths available at CMiC for those willing to forge their own.    

When did you join CMiC and why? 

I joined in July 2013 shortly after graduating from business school. When I was first searching for a job, I was considering opportunities in Sales. I found a posting online for CMiC and was brought in for a group interview with Gord, the President & CEO. I went in convinced that I was best suited for Sales, but Gord thought I would be a better fit for the Solutions teamAt the time, I didn’t even know that ‘Solutions’ was a career. I think when you’re a student, you’re not fully aware of all the career options out there.  

What is your role at CMiC? 

I am the Director of Product Management. I began as a Solutions Consultant, where I was showing the product to customers. Part of the job was making sure that the customer sees the product in its best light and wants to use it. I quickly realized that it was difficult to demo our mobile application. I began to share the bugs with the development manager, which then snowballed into testing the latest version of the product and suggesting new features. Again, I didn’t know product management was a job, but I was essentially doing both Solutions and Product at the same time. Eventually Gord gave me the opportunity to own the Product Manager role full-time, which grew into more responsibilities, managing more product and bringing a team on board. 

Today I manage communications internally and externally for the productbrainstorm new features, act as a liaison between the customer and our engineering team, along with many other collaborative tasks. I work with a fantastic team of people across the company to make this all happen. 

What does a typical day for Steve look like? 

My day starts as soon as I get into my car. I try to make use of my 45-minute commute from the city by scheduling calls with our developers in India (the time difference works perfectly!). If it’s not a phone call, then I’ll be listening to a podcast. 

My day is always different; that’s the beauty of working with product. I might have a meeting with a customer one day and an internal meeting about design the next—it really differs each day. Good product managers are the quarterbacks for their product and will easily adapt according to the play 

What is your favourite CMiC product, and why? 

Mobile Field. Not only was it the first product I worked on, but I have a soft spot for ibecause it was a product that initially wasn’t successful. The product took longer than anybody anticipated, but it was ultimately our persistence that got it to the great product we know todayFive years ago, we were up against other products on the market with development teams much larger than ours. When you’re building new products (or features) its difficult to get hit a “home-run” in your first round of development. That’s why its so important to for the whole team to remain persistent and work through the problems that come up in the 1.0 builds. 

Share with me your best CMiC memory. 

We were in a meeting with ECAB (Executive CMiC Advisory Board), when the CIO of JE Dunn announced that they will ‘go-live’ with Mobile Field and Drawing Management. It was a huge win for the entire mobile development team because, only 3 years earlier, were we trying to decide whether to continue developing the product.  

Being selected by an ENR Top 100 company was the most satisfying experience because their decision was our validation and proof that the years of hard work paid off.  

Where is the best lunch spot? 

often eat at my desk but, if I decide to go out for a bite, I like Sandra’s for their chicken parmigiana sandwich with a homemade cookie. If it’s sunny, then the Earls patio nearby. 

What do you listen to on your morning commute? 

Podcasts. I enjoy content from Tim Ferriss or Jordan Harbinger. I also listen to a couple of geeky podcasts like Exponent. It’s very applicable to our industry and my work. 

Im obsessed with making my drive productive. 

Go-to CMiC office snack? 

The Vector cerealI’ll occasionally go for the oatmeal, but it’s a treat because of the sugar. 

What does managing a product at CMiC look like? What skills does it require? 

Persistence and patience. The two lessons I’ve learned in the short time I’ve been doing this are:  

1). This stuff takes so much longer than I and others realize. 

2). Communication is keyYou need to be able to communicate with Developers, QA, Support, etc., and act as the intermediary between them all. 

What is your favourite part of the day? 

It’s not a time of day but rather when a developer asks me to test a new feature and it works exactly as we imagined it. Seeing what we want in theory come out in practice on the first try doesn’t happen often…but it’s a great feeling when it does! 

Any tips for someone looking to join the CMiC team? 

Come in with an open mind. Sometimes people are hired for one job but realize they’re better suited for other roles (like me!)The kinds of people who thrive at CMiC are those who create their own opportunities. The company is open to those who say they want to try something different. If your path is bettering the company, you will be supported by those around you. 

Now tell me, Steve, clients recognize you from webinars and demos, but what is a fun fact they won’t know about you? 

When my girlfriend (now fiancémoved in with me, I inherited a little white chihuahua named Spencer. Now I’m the owner of wonderfully annoying 7-pound dogWhen I take the dog out every morning at 6 AM for a walk, I try and look as cool as possible while doing it… needless to say, it’s sometimes difficult 

Meet Ilias – Developer

Comedic. Helpful. Computer Savvy.

Ilias is the self-proclaimed ‘loudest of the programmers’ and defends his title with his recognizable laugh. As an active member of the CMiC community, Ilias is a fire warden and one of the founding members of the Health and Safety Committee. You’ll often find him wandering the office inspecting first aid kits or rehearsing fire drills, but regardless of what he’s up to, Ilias is someone you can count on for help (or for a good laugh).

When did you join CMiC and why?

I joined CMiC on April 1, 2016. I needed a change of pace after being a Reports Developer for a promotional products fulfillment and distribution company for 2 years prior. I found CMiC on the internet and noticed the similarities in the role to my last. I interviewed and was hired (obviously, if I’m doing this interview). I also liked CMiC’s location—it’s close to where I live.

My background includes a 3-year advanced diploma in computer programming and 3-year advance diploma in accounting. Simply put, I have both a business and technical background. I ultimately chose CMiC because there was an accounting component to the role, and it was a rare opportunity for me to combine both skillsets.

What is your role at CMiC?

I am currently an Integrations Developer, but I started at CMiC as a Reports Developer. I transitioned teams after I was approached and asked if I wanted to move based on my skillset and lovable personality. *chuckles*

In my current role, I build web servers for integrations between third-party software systems and the CMiC software. I’m also part of a team of folks who diagnose and solve web service problems, as well as assist customers with the setup of their own API and RTI services.

What was your favourite bug fix?

When I determined why a document resource wasn’t communicating between systems. It turns out that it was a mistype (i.e. a typo). Even though I spent countless hours trying to figure out what the problem was, the satisfaction of solving the problem was so great.

Okay, okay, so I should also mention that it was also my own typo, but as a developer, it’s always better to find your own mistakes. When someone else finds your mistake, it’s bad… but when you find your own, it’s good!

Share with me your best CMiC memory.

Going to my first CONNECT Annual User Conference in 2018 for the 20th anniversary celebrations. I absolutely loved the opportunity to interact with customers face-to-face and to see how we conduct business outside of the office walls. Developers are often excluded from client facing events, but that’s not the case at CMiC. I staffed the CMiC Support Campground at CONNECT, a station where customers can ask experts about their support-related questions. I was the point person for inquiries regarding Collaborate and PM Exchange.

Why did you join the JHSC (Joint Health and Safety Committee)?

I joined to be more involved and to be a voice on behalf of employees. Health and safety are also passions of mine. I saw the opportunity to be a founding member of the JHSC after we exceeded 150 employees (there’s a bylaw that makes it mandatory for companies our size). Last year alone we hired over 75 employees, and it became apparent to us that we needed specialized training to ensure we have the tools to protect all employees. Although an office doesn’t (and really shouldn’t) look like a construction site, it’s interesting how—in a lot of ways—it needs to operate like one. Everyone needs to be healthy and feel safe, and this committee ensures we have procedures in place to guarantee that for everybody!

Where is the best lunch spot?

The best lunch spot in this neighborhood is Sofra’s on Steeles Avenue and Norfinch Drive. Its Mediterranean vibe reminds me of home (they’re Turkish; I’m Greek). The atmosphere is always lively.

In the office, I would say the 3rd floor kitchen because it has the most light.

What do you listen to on your morning commute?

What I listen to depends on my mood or the weather. Either the news or Flow 93.5. If the weather is nice, I listen to music. If it’s bad weather, I listen to the traffic report to make sure that I’m not driving through nonsense.

Go-to CMiC office snack?

I don’t have one because I follow the ‘keto diet.’ I can eat a portioned quantity of the chocolate covered almonds in the office… so a handful—max. I usually eat two egg cups for breakfast and chicken with mixed veggies, topped with cream cheese and butter, for lunch. I don’t have snacks. Coffee with cream is considered my snack.

What’s your favourite programming language.

Java for its strength and flexibility. Java is one of the only languages that is cross-platform capable. I use Java and XML primarily in my role with a little bit of SQL.

What is your favourite part of the day?

Lunch because I get to stretch my legs and see what’s going on around the office. Lunch is a fantastic time to corner people with your questions. If you don’t answer my emails, I’ll track you down. Even if your mouth is full, I’ll come. People do it to me, so I pay it forward. I’ll track you down.

Any tips for someone looking to join the CMiC team?

We use multiple languages, so depending on your ‘flavour,’ you’ll have plenty of opportunities to experiment. Especially as our company continues to grow, programmers are becoming more and more of a necessity. Also, all of your bosses here are pretty cool.

What is a common misconception about programmers?

That we are always looking at the floor because we can’t maintain conversation. Oh, and we don’t shower.

Well, first off, I shower daily.

And two, at CMiC, programmers are bright and efficient. We’re all interactive and we work effectively as a team. But as programmers, we do yell at our monitors a lot when our code isn’t working.