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A Software Engineer Leadership Story – Vishwanath Eswarakrishnan

Let’s meet Vishwanath Eswarakrishnan – an expert Software Engineer from India. He is playing a pivotal role in the revolutionary road of technological innovation and digital transformation. Growing up in India, Vishwanath was exposed to coding early on and was captivated by its power to create and innovate.

His curiosity and enthusiasm only grew stronger which drove him to pursue higher education in Computer Science. Vishwanath has evolved into a seasoned professional with a unique story to share after acquiring a master’s degree from the University of Southern California and experience in the Bay Area since 2014.

In this interview, I am going to talk about his work projects along with his achievements and contributions to various organizations. So, let’s get inspiration from the twists and turns that shaped his career and made him an innovative problem-solver in the engineering field.

Embarking on a software engineering journey:

An internship at Netapp organization was the beginning of Vishwanath Eswarakrishnan’s software engineering journey and his success never stopped after this. Here, he worked closely with the Security QA team and collaborated on the development of security solutions in the application layer for the Netapp’s operating system. This internship laid the groundwork for a revolutionary initiative that went on to transform the industry’s reputation and establish Vishwanath as a leading expert and innovator in software engineering.

Vishwanath’s initial exposure to NetApp’s innovative culture led to a full-time role at the company’s Sunnyvale office, where he further polished his skills and learned new technological tactics. He seamlessly transitioned to collaborating with the development team on enhancing the security features of NetApp’s flagship ONTAP Operating System after demonstrating a keen interest in development.

In an interview, Vishwanath specifically talks about his experience at one of the top-tier companies, NetApp, before joining Meta:

“My expertise at NetApp’s flagship ONTAP Operating System was focused on fortifying the application layer security. I think this was the perfect time when I learned a lot in NetApp’s environment and my experience in developing cutting-edge system security solutions enabled me to bring a unique perspective and skillset to all of my other roles.”

After his time at NetApp, he made the move to Nimble Storage, a startup that was growing at an incredible pace. This new chapter brought fresh challenges and opportunities, and we can feel his excitement to be a part of a team that was innovating and pushing boundaries and stereotypes.

Leadership at Nimble Storage:

After saying goodbye to NetApp, Vishwanath Eswarakrishnan started working as a Senior Software Engineer at Nimble Storage. This was a golden opportunity for him to showcase his expertise gained from Netapp. He continued to focus on Security features within a similar team at Nimble Storage. The dynamic environment allowed him to gain valuable insights into the entire development process, from start to finish, within a smaller team setting. According to him:

“I started by working on authentication and authorization at Nimble Storage, and my role gradually expanded to include developing encryption at rest features for the Nimble OS (NimOS). This was a great opportunity to dive deeper into security and make a meaningful impact on the product.”

More importantly, he fostered a close working relationship with UI Engineers and made sure of a harmonious integration of frontend elements and backend functionalities. This collaborative approach extended to designing features from inception to completion and encompassed both user interface and underlying system architecture. Moreover, he tackled support issues with utmost urgency and prioritized the resolution of pain points directly impacting customer satisfaction. In this way, Vishwanath demonstrated a customer-centric mindset and a commitment to delivering seamless product experiences.

Furthermore, I would like to share that one of the highlights of his time at Nimble Storage was spearheading the implementation of the company’s first cloud-related feature. This involved setting up trust anchors on NimOS to establish mutual trust among all Nimble-owned devices. This project marked his first experience as a lead and required him to work closely with engineers from various teams to achieve the project’s goals.

Then, he took on a significant project at HPE Nimble Storage after the company got acquired – “Synchronous Replication with Encryption Support”. This project involved securely transferring encryption keys between devices in real-time and it was posing substantial technical challenges that required creative problem-solving. However, he successfully developed innovative solutions to overcome these hurdles to ensure the project’s success and showcase his technical and agile expertise.

Serving Cloud Technologies at eBay:

His passion for cloud technologies took him to eBay, where he became part of the Tess team within the infrastructure division. He delves deeper into the insights of computing infrastructure, with a special focus on Kubernetes-related features within Tess, a cutting-edge Kubernetes wrapper with advanced functionalities like federation. In fact, he drove several impactful projects during his time at eBay, starting with automating node cluster joins. This automation resulted in substantial deployment time savings and significant boosts to developer productivity.

To be honest, he played a historical role in developing the Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) pipeline leveraging Tekton during his tenure at eBay. This involved streamlining various stages of the software development lifecycle and ensuring seamless and dependable delivery of code changes. Moreover, he spearheaded initiatives related to the etcd Operator and made valuable contributions to projects like Sentinel (eBay’s proprietary distributed firewall) and Calico (leveraged by Sentinel).

Igniting Innovation at Cruise:

Vishwanath’s contributions as a Senior Software Engineer at Cruise are worth mentioning as an inspiration for the newbies. So…he joined Cruise while seeking new engineering opportunities (a pioneering autonomous vehicle company) as part of the Simulation Infrastructure team.

He played a key role in various projects, including integrating Autoscaler with Azure and enhancing worker agent functionalities to provide valuable compute utilization insights. Most notably, he led the successful setup of on-premises compute infrastructure for testing and simulations which was a crucial milestone for Cruise’s future growth and development.

Wrap-Up: Vishwanath Inspiring Next-Gen Software Engineers!

In the wrap-up, we analyzed that building trust in organizations’ hearts is the significance of all work and achievements. We found that Vishwanath’s journey highlights two significant hurdles in the engineering field: building trust and driving innovation. He overcame these challenges by building collaborative teamwork and spearheading impactful projects. Genuinely, his experience serves as an inspiration to the younger generation of engineers. Also, he demonstrates that with guidance, mentorship, and a customer-centric mindset, anyone can overcome obstacles and achieve success in software engineering.

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