Employee Spotlight: Meet Jim Vowles

25 Aug

Employee Spotlight: Meet Jim Vowles

NetComm’s blog series, Employee Spotlight, is meant to allow readers to get to know the team working toward customer success. This week, we are introducing Jim Vowles, Software Engineer at NetComm.

Tell us about your role at NetComm?

For most of my time here, I’ve supported one of our large technology accounts as team lead.  My role has played a part in architecting, building, maintaining, and  keeping the site alive through numerous transitions over the years. 

Between education and work experience, I have a pretty diverse set of skills that includes project management, analysis, publication design, training, trade show and conference management, contracting, and creative and technical writing, as well as the usual programming, database, and related skills.

What do you keep up with new technologies and trends?

Being a bit of a generalist, I gravitate toward opportunities to work closely with a subject matter expert on a particular tech implementation, but it’s also not unusual for me to be assigned “figure out how to do this” tasks that force me to stretch a bit. I enjoy taking on these types of challenges, and then trying to pass the lessons learned along to others. 

What NetComm project are you most proud of?

I was project lead for our office redesign a few years back.  We now have a flexible work environment which allows you to move seamlessly between workstations. As for projects that involve code, I’d have to say the custom content system I built for our big technology account. It’s survived for 17 years now, despite re-orgs and mergers and splits. I’ve been forced to innovate around some pretty strict limitations.

How do you think NetComm makes a difference for its customers?

We take the time to figure out what our customers need, not just what they want. We aren’t just chasing trends, we’re building things that actually improve our customers’ work flow and maintainability. It’s very rewarding to hear that from customers.

Tell us something we don't know about you.

For nearly 20 years, I have volunteered for an educational/cultural nonprofit organization focused on Asian culture. It has afforded me amazing opportunities for personal growth, and NetComm has been very supportive of my “hobby.” I also spent the first decade of my career as an editor, publication designer, trainer, and analyst for a defense contractor. I fell into the Internet at exactly the right time to turn what had been hobbyist programming into a viable career, and put my previous planning and management work to good use supporting my hobby.