Meet the Innovators: Jason Smith

Welcome back to our series featuring Octo’s innovators! In previous installments, we featured employees like Gwen Forkin and James Farley. This time, we’re interviewing Jason Smith, a Senior Project/Program Design Manager in Octo’s Department of Defense/Intelligence Community Business Unit. Jason serves on a project supporting the Australia Defence Force.

What motivates you? What do you feel is your personal mission, your “why,” and how does that align with your work at Octo?

What motivates me is team growth, setting big goals and achieving them, and ultimately making our customers happy. It brings me great satisfaction when I can achieve all these objectives and continue the important work we do for the customer.

 I’m responsible for managing the schedule, scope and cost of my project. It’s an important job that requires analysis and sometimes creativity. We have to be very careful about staying within the scope of the project while still meeting the ever-evolving needs of our customer, which is always our first priority. A big part of my “why” is tied to delivering value via quality products and services. We have many solutions and tools at our fingertips, including open source. I believe in open source software solutions and the benefits that our customers receive from them. Open source enables us to deliver the quality we strive to offer while staying within scope and cost.

Besides open source, what technologies do you geek out on and why?

For me it is about finding the right solution to solve a problem rather than about a particular technology. We have a lot of very smart technologists that I am happy to defer to, but in the end, I’m interested in delivering a solution that achieves our goal. Regardless of the project, that goal has to be customer satisfaction. As a project manager, I have the challenge to meet that goal but within the bounds of cost, schedule, and scope.

Tell us about your team. How would you describe them and the way you work together?

We are very open and collaborative. This has continued even into our new normal of remote work. We value having honest and frank conversations, and not being afraid to ask for help. We also value a diversity of viewpoints and the need to come together in a common direction to meet our team goals.  We trust each other intrinsically to be responsible for our own work. We succeed and fail as a team, and we value failures for what we learn from them.

Why should someone consider working for Octo?

We bring a talented group of motivated engineers leveraging powerful technologies to deliver value to our customers. We don’t believe in waste, and we’re mission focused. If you are similarly motivated, I think Octo is a great place for you.

Octo offers an inclusive culture of innovation, learning, and growth. If you’re seeking a position in an exciting field where you can make a difference, visit our Careers Page. Veteran? Start here to explore your next mission-first opportunity.