At Mirantis, we pride ourselves on being an engineering-driven company. Without a doubt, our greatest resource is our world-class engineering talent. One of the most important responsibilities of our product team is working to align engineers’ passions with company strategy, and giving them the freedom to work on things they love. To that end, one of the initiatives that we started to help foster and reward creativity among our product engineering staff is Mirantis Hack Week — a time when members of the product team can devote a full week to a project they’re personally interested in.
It’s exciting to be an engineer when you have the freedom to pursue your passions. We strongly believe that the concept of “10% Passion Time” is crucial to fostering innovation as a company. After all, the best work always comes from passion. In an industry where engineers write software for other engineers, it is also the engineers themselves who often know the best direction that technologies and products should go. From a staffing perspective, we also need to have the best engineers and the best technology to continue to recruit and retain world-class engineering staff. For these reasons, we instituted Mirantis Hack Week as a time when anyone in the product team can devote a full week to projects they’re passionate about.
To align with company strategy and Mirantis values, themes are chosen for each Mirantis Hack Week, and each project must address at least one. For example, the latest Mirantis Hack Week had the themes of product coherence (building a unifying ecosystem); innovation and excellence; and developer centricity. Participants can work in teams or individually, and the best ideas win prizes. Both a cross-departmental panel of reviewers and all the Mirantis Hack Week participants themselves vote to decide the winners. Importantly, it’s not just product development engineers who take part; in fact, members of our documentation and sustaining engineering teams won some of our recent prizes.
It’s amazing to see all the great ideas that employees come up with. Several have already become invaluable features in our products or open source projects, with more on our roadmap. Notable examples include:
- Lens extension for the Mirantis Container Cloud web UI — Makes it quick and easy to add Mirantis Container Cloud clusters to Lens for further inspection and monitoring
- Two-factor authentication for MIrantis Kubernetes Engine — Adds an extra layer of security when logging into the platform
- Multi-rack architecture support for Tungsten Fabric for Mirantis OpenStack for Kubernetes — Enables primarily telcos to integrate clouds natively with Layer 3-centric modern networking topologies, such as Spine-Leaf
- Port forward dashboard for Lens — Makes it convenient to view all open port-forwards in one place, specify or change port numbers, terminate port-forwards, and more
- Containerized load-balancer services in MCC — Removes dependency on system packages and gives the ability to use any version of required services deployed in a container
In last month’s Mirantis Hack Week, 32 team members participated, submitting 23 projects in total. To learn more about the hacks and see who won, check out our Mirantis Hack Week page.
Ultimately, employees who find their work meaningful will bring the most energy and enthusiasm to what they do. Mirantis Hack Weeks are an important way for our product team to not only show that we value employee ingenuity, but also practice a proactive culture of risk-taking and collective excellence.