"It all started with a gaming competition in a magazine I read, where the prize was a brand new PlayStation One. I wasn’t a top contestant in the game, but I managed to hack into the competition’s system and add myself to the winners' list."
Where Design Meets Technology
Since the beginning of my career in 2004, I’ve been concerned with how end-users interact with technology. My work addresses the intersection between web design and back-end technology, and my focus is on functionality, readability, and quality of user interface (UI) on Palo Alto Networks’ XDR threat detection and response application. As Senior Front-End Developer, I create the UI that enables customers to successfully visualize security incidents, allow those incidents to be analyzed, isolate infected machines, and more, all resulting in superior protection against cyber attacks. What I find most exciting about my work is that the features I develop impact and help secure the largest companies in the world and that every single line of code I write has a meaning and is visible by tens of thousands of people (at least!).
One of the most visible features I have developed is the application’s dashboard, which loads as the default page when customers open the application and is, therefore, the most-viewed page. It summarizes the security incidents collected by our system and allows users to navigate from there to specific incidents they would like to explore in more detail. And probably the feature I’m most proud of developing is the Remote Terminal, a useful and sophisticated feature that allows a security specialist to connect to an endpoint that might be infected by malware, run remote commands on it, view the task manager, pause and stop processes, and more, just as they would if they were working locally on that machine.
A Positive Culture
Since the moment when my hiring process began at Palo Alto Networks in 2018, I have felt that this is truly one of the best places to work — it is definitely the best place I’ve ever worked. Not only is it appealing to work for the largest cybersecurity company in the world, but my interactions with everyone at the company, from the professional and courteous recruitment specialist to my hiring manager, my department’s vice president, and everyone on my team, have been positive and welcoming.
Even after being here for over two years, I still feel this way. The company places high value on knowledge sharing, collaboration between teams, and trust between managers and employees. There’s no micromanaging. You won’t see Human Resources or managers tracking every work hour we put in; they don’t need to. Instead, there’s implicit trust and mutual accountability because everyone is dedicated to doing their best work here. This creates a unique work environment where people give their all and, even in stressful times, the feeling is positive and supportive.
In my short time with this company, I’ve learned a tremendous amount. I’ve learned how to cope with colleagues of different types and personalities. I’ve learned to prioritize tasks and work independently while also improving my multitasking ability. And I’ve learned that knowledge sharing and collaboration are the best ways to make the company succeed. I’ve taken these lessons to heart as I’ve grown in my ability to deliver the best possible features for customers.
As a woman, I can say that Palo Alto Networks has excellent employees of both genders, and I work daily with other great female developers, product managers, and quality engineers. Although I think some women may feel intimidated to work in technology, they shouldn’t. The atmosphere here is very empowering for women, and I’ve never felt like I was a minority.
I hope more women join this company because I’d like everyone to be able to experience the same positive environment and perks as I do.
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