“You’ve Reached Tech Support—How Can I Help?” - A day in a life with Hugh - Graduate Technical Support Engineer
Here at Guidewire, we offer talented, enthusiastic grads and interns the chance to surround themselves with bright minds, development opportunities, and diverse, tightly bonded teams, always digging deeper to reach the right answers.
You're given autonomy, but you have the endless support of gifted, talented teammates who, with patience and focus, will help you embrace every challenge, better your best, and chart the path of your successful future.
Here is Hugh experience with us and how a day can look like.
My first alarm goes off. Despite my best efforts, I’m still not a morning person. We’ll try again later.
Now’s the time. Roll out of bed, quickly dress and grab some breakfast, and then take a seat in my home office. In these “quaran-times,” one of the few pros is a much shorter commute!
To start off the day, I’ve a little time before our first meeting to go through email and check for updates on current support issues. Usually, there are at least one or two issues overnight. After all, Guidewire is a global company.
Time for our morning meeting, where we get an update on how everyone is doing today and find out if there’s anything out of the ordinary coming up. Except for any updates from higher up the corporate ladder, we’re typically well-organized enough not to be surprised here. As my manager says to finish up the meeting: “Time for another coffee!”
The bulk of the day is working on cases—the support tickets that customers raise to track the issues they’ve reported. Some of these we can answer based on past cases. Others are more involved and require us to replicate the issues ourselves and then figure out what’s wrong (rationality: solving problems based on factual evidence—one of our core values here at Guidewire). This is very interesting but has a bit of a learning curve. We can’t always solve the issue ourselves, but a major part of what we do is to determine which team to send a case to as a way of getting an issue resolved. When this happens, it’s important for us to remember that we’re representing Guidewire to the customer, but we’re also the customer’s voice to the other teams (integrity: truthful relationships with our customers and each other—our second core value).
12:00 pm (Lunch)
Time to take an hour for lunch. Usually I take my hour at 1 pm or 2 pm, but today I’ll be getting some alerts. They’re usually quite hectic and need a lot of focus, so it’s best to be refueled before they start.
Every few days, we go on duty to track and observe alerts that come in from our customers’ logging systems. Trying to catch errors before they snowball into bigger issues is an important part of the job. A good chunk of this is dealing with expected issues, but it’s always interesting to get to search what’s happening and going wrong to continue learning on the job.
The nerve-wracking part of alerts is when a truly severe issue comes through. I had my first one recently and was worried I would mess it up somehow. When one of these alerts comes up, we have to quickly assemble a team to tackle the issue: experts from different internal teams who can troubleshoot the issue and solve it.
It turned out to be not half as bad as I’d expected! My role was mainly as an observer to be able to update the customer when progress was made. The severe issue with this high-priority customer, which I’d initially perceived as being urgent, was in fact a false alert that could be downgraded.
Our European team is split between Dublin and Madrid. In the afternoon, we have a daily meeting where both teams meet to discuss what’s been happening during the day as well as any important updates we need to be aware of. For now, it doesn’t feel like they’re any further away than the rest of the team in Dublin (collegiality: working as professional equals with minimal hierarchy—our third core value) because everything is happening on Zoom. After the meeting, it’s back to handling cases for the rest of the day.
As the workday draws to a close, we make sure that, if anything important needs updating, we let the North America teams know what needs to be done.