Inside Illumio: Sarang Joshi
Inside Illumio is a monthly series that highlights the exceptional individuals behind Illumio's world-class products. Each post will peek behind the scenes to spotlight a member of our team. Come get to know us a little better and learn more about what makes Illumio's culture so unique.
This month, meet Sarang Joshi, Staff Engineer at Illumio. Read how his fast-moving team is innovating in the container security space, why he never wants to be the smartest person in the room, and how he expresses his creativity outside of work.
Tell us about yourself. What do you do at Illumio?
I’m a Staff Engineer on the containers team within Illumio’s engineering organization. My main role is as a developer. I work on writing the code that is part of Illumio’s container solution, specifically Illumio for Kubernetes and OpenShift.
I’m also serving as one of the Scrum Masters for my team, so I help with the organization and planning of the projects we’re working on. Developing takes most of my time, but I enjoy being able to wear both engineer and project manager hats.
What made you interested in working at Illumio?
As a new college grad, I joined Illumio in 2018, a whopping four and a half years ago which is quite an eternity when it comes to tech jobs these days! But I’ve loved the four years I’ve been at Illumio.
What made me interested in joining Illumio was my interview experience. I’d been doing a lot of interviews with other companies during my job search, and I was being asked many of the same boilerplate questions or basic “solve this coding problem” scenarios. But Illumio’s interview was more of a conversation. I felt like it was a genuine, personal back-and-forth where I was encouraged to think critically and creatively. I thought that if these were the kinds of conversations I’d be having at Illumio as an employee, then it would be the right place for me to work.
What does a day in the life of Sarang look like? What are you working on that excites you?
Day-to-day I’m working on new features as an engineer, including building new functionality, adding customer requests, and generally improving our products. I also focus on infrastructure work to keep the whole system running smoothly.
As a Scrum Master on the team, I make sure everyone knows what they need to work on and that project goals are clear week-to-week. This means daily morning standup meetings with the team and 1:1s with other team members during the week. While I have a good amount of time during the day to work independently, my team members and I are always collaborating on projects.
I especially enjoy the mentoring part of my role where I get to work with the junior engineers on our team. I love helping others grow in their role and develop new skills. It's incredible to see everyone's career journey as they grow at Illumio! I'm also excited about the innovative work Illumio’s containers team is doing. We're always working on fresh ideas and building new things in an already fast-changing part of the security industry.
What is the most important thing that you’ve learned so far at Illumio?
The best place to be is in a room where you’re not the smartest person. I always have something to learn, especially since I’m still early on in my career. It’s important to be humble, open-minded, and recognize the value of the people around you bringing something special to the table. I think it’s the best opportunity to grow – and helps me be a better contributor.
What are you passionate about outside of your career?
I love music – it’s a very important creative expression for me outside of my career. I’m always listening to new music and finding new genres. Part of that also includes creating music. I’m part of an a cappella group that travels to different places for performances, and I’m continuing to learn Indian classical singing. I started learning in middle school and started to pick it up again after graduating college. And during the pandemic, I even picked up the drums!
Which Illumio core values resonate the most with you and why?
Leveraging differences and run to challenges. In this industry and the environment we live in, I think it’s very important to seek out heterogeneous ideas and recognize the power of our unique backgrounds and cultures. It can be challenging – and uncomfortable – to acknowledge disagreements or opposing ways of thinking, but those differences are actually strengths to be celebrated. This mindset creates the best solutions, teams, company culture, and outcomes, and I love seeing these core values work together at Illumio.
What do you want people to know about working at Illumio?
In an ever-growing, ever-digitizing world, privacy and security is an essential piece of technology. At Illumio, we're working on a very exciting and relevant security solution – we’re solving important problems in the tech world today. You can know that you’re doing meaningful work that’s genuinely helping society when you work at Illumio. That’s not something every developer or tech company can say.
Interested in joining the team? Check out our career openings.