Sit Down With Robert Scott: Senior Director of Development Operations
The main focus of Webroot’s Senior Director of Development Operations is collaboration with engineers to advance the architecture of cloud services, and that’s no easy task.
In this spotlight, we dive into Robert Scott’s #LifeatWebroot. From working with Google and Amazon cloud devices to savings initiatives, Robert’s days are never dull.
What is your favorite part of working as a Sr. Director of Development Operations?
My favorite part of my job is working with a diverse group of engineers in offices all around the world.
What does a week as a Sr. Director of Development Operations look like?
A typical week will have anywhere from 10-20 hours of meetings for planning, project issues, cross department status updates, vendors, cloud cost management, ISO compliance, and security, among other topics. I work with our engineers on updating product architecture and also with Google and Amazon cloud services. Both Google and AWS cloud computing platforms provide Webroot the flexibility to build our services in a way that saves time, money, and lets AWS and Google manage our infrastructure without compromising scalability, security, or dependability.
What have you learned in this role?
I have definitely learned a lot about cloud cost management, ISO 27001certification (one of the highest internationally recognized standards for information security management systems), and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the EU.
What is your greatest accomplishment in your career at Webroot so far?
My greatest accomplishment so far has been building a team of very talented development operations engineers that bring a diverse set of skills to Webroot. When looking for a talented engineer, I look for certain criteria in the selection process. First, communication skills are a must. We work with Q&A developers a lot and it’s important that our engineers can clearly articulate potential problems. Second, automation and programming skills are important to be a successful engineer. Also, Google and Amazon cloud service experience can definitely help in our selection. Lastly, having the ability to work and operate as a team in different time-zones is another must. We have to have flexible hours to accommodate multiple offices around the world and ensure everyone is constantly in the loop, regardless of geography.
What brought you to Webroot after your last job?
I had worked with Webroot’s CTO Hal Lonas in the past and we always kept in touch. We had lunch in San Francisco about four years ago and he mentioned an opening at Webroot. I jumped at the opportunity to help build a global development operations team at Webroot and to move from San Francisco back to sunny San Diego.
Best career advice you’ve received?
“In the midst of chaos, there is also opportunity.” – Sun Tzu
Are you involved in anything at Webroot outside of your day-to-day work?
I work with the San Diego Tech Hub. We aim to establish the city of San Diego as a technological hub by connecting with business, organizations, and individuals to leverage their resources and talents in creating a tech community.
Favorite memory on the job?
I loved going to happy hours with our Dublin team.
What is your favorite thing about working at Webroot?
The opportunity to visit all the great people and office locations we have around the world. I visit Broomfield, San Jose, Darby, Dublin, London, Austria and the Northern UK every year.
What is the hardest thing about being a Sr. Director of Development Operations?
The hardest part of my job is trying to find the right balance between competing initiatives coming from internal departments at Webroot. Also, the backlog of development operations and technical debt that needs to be addressed.
What is your favorite thing to do in San Diego?
My favorite thing to do in San Diego is a tie between camping along the beach and golf.
How did you get into the technology field?
I studied mechanical engineering in Kentucky, but spent my younger years as a bartender because it was a lot more fun and I had the opportunity to meet lots of interesting people. After 10 years of fun, I got certified as an Microsoft Certified Solutions Engineer (MCSE) and got my first job at a startup called Websense as a technical support engineer.
Check out career opportunities at Webroot here: www.webroot.com/careers
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