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Alizer Stories: Why I still love working at Aliz after 10 years

Published on
February 10, 2023
Aliz Team
Aliz Team
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Alizer Stories: Why I still love working at Aliz after 10 years

In Hungary we don’t say, “Seriously, 10 years?,” we say, “That's a lot, even for dumplings,” let alone years you spend in a company. If I had to quickly summarize why I still love working here after all these years, I would say that it’s because of the many different situations I've been able to try myself in and develop, both professionally and personally.

Alizer Stories: Why I still love working at Aliz after 10 years

But let's not jump ahead too far. Let me tell you about the major milestones of the last 10 years that have been defining for me. 

The beginnings

In May 2012, I joined the company (of about 10 people then) during my university years as a junior Java developer. The early days were crucial for me because I was able to work closely with the Chief Technical Officer (CTO) of the company at the time, who was also a good mentor and helped me to grow quickly. 

At the beginning, I was given smaller tasks. But after about a year, I was thrown into deep water (with help, of course) and had to deliver an independent separate module on my own. An old system had to be replaced, which unfortunately did not scale properly. It could not perform its task at the time, and a scalable solution had to be provided. The technical challenge was a given; I managed to solve it and we replaced the old system. 

Of course, it's another matter that when I looked back at the code a few years later I was surprised at first at how unreadable and difficult to maintain it was. But a code can't be 10/10 right away.

Experience in banking industry

After a few years, I was assigned to a project for a leading Hungarian bank. This was also a very exciting experience, because it was the first time I saw large and business-critical systems and the challenges that come with developing an application with more than 100 developers working on it at the same time. I started out as a frontend developer. As I had previously worked more on the backend side, it was interesting to get a more focused and insightful view of frontend work. This is where I first encountered the challenges of how to manage a team and how to motivate colleagues. In hindsight, there are certainly a few things I would have done differently, but perhaps this was the first time I experienced the power of "leading by example." 

The last part of my time here was spent as an architect; although, in reality, I think I was more of an enthusiastic senior at most. I learned a lot from this, because there were regular weekly architect meetings where colleagues would bring difficult problems and together we could brainstorm the pros and cons of possible solutions. 

In the meantime, the company was growing nicely; there were about 40 of us. We were heavily focused on Google Cloud technologies, which I also wanted to get involved with, so I asked to be transferred to another cloud project.

Cloud engineering

After returning from the client, I started to manage a data project in which difficulties quickly arose. Based on the feedback from the previous project, I thought I was already an architect, but when I came back and found myself in a completely new technology (GCP) and topic (data), I had to admit that I was a junior again (in this new field). With enough humility and a lot of help from my colleagues, I managed to overcome the initial difficulties and delved into the mysteries of BigQuery and Dataflow. 

It was a very exciting experience as I got to know more and more about the potential of the cloud; the problems we used to talk about in the bank were partly solved by cloud-based services that were more scalable and followed a different design pattern. During this period, I led several Google Cloud-based projects on the Data, Application Development and ML Engineering side, until a new challenge came along.


To this day, I still remember the moment when a colleague came to me and said, "Zotya, how about you hold a multi-day training for one of our client's developers on Google Cloud? A little extra background information: It will be in Indonesia - and in two weeks.”

Immediately I felt that this was completely out of my comfort zone, but I was glad that there was an opportunity like this and that I could overcome the (unrealistic) limits I had set for myself. Two weeks was not so short, and the flight was long, so I had time to deepen my knowledge enough to help others. 

This was the point that kick-started my new role as a Google Cloud Technology Consultant. I subsequently worked for several large companies in Europe and Asia, helping them from the start to make their Google Cloud adoption go as smoothly as possible. 


Mentoring wasn’t a separate phase of my time at Aliz, but rather something that has accompanied me throughout. I have received a lot of good mentoring support many times. I received help when I was uncertain about something, and this experience helped me see the importance of this role. Once I had enough experience, I began to mentor and lead others.

I was given the opportunity to actively support several junior colleagues as a people leader, and I am happy to see that many of them are now at the senior level. We are talking about talented colleagues who owe their development to themselves. My role was about making this happen more smoothly and, when the waves got bigger, to drop a lifeline now and then so that they could swim on more safely.

Professional Dad

When my baby boy was born came another challenge in my life. I took six months of full-time paternity leave after the birth: I took over the baby from my wife and looked after him from then on. It was an exciting experience because I got to better experience my son's personality development by spending a lot more time with him.

It was also good for my relationship with my wife, because by swapping roles, we reached a better understanding of each other's difficulties, what it's like to be at home with a baby all the time or what it's like to work while caring for a baby. I am very grateful to the company that they accepted our decision and supported me so that, as a man, I could be at home with my son.

Co-founder, CTO

A moment in the company's history came when the core business was large and stable enough to finance its own product development and diversify its portfolio. This was an area I had partially started to work on before the paternity leave and when I came back I focused entirely on how Aliz could have its own SaaS product. 

I already mentioned a difficult period in my career when I came off the banking project; this was the next, similarly difficult period. We had many ideas. We tried several things, but in the end we couldn’t get a breakthrough with customers. 

We tried to regularly look back and learn from our mistakes to see what we could do better (this in itself would need a whole other article). It was especially exciting when I broadened my horizons and tried to better understand the mysteries of product management (I recommend the books of Marty Cagan). 

Perhaps this is where I learned the most about myself, because I found myself in many, many unexpected situations that were completely new to me. One of the biggest lessons I learned about myself is how persistent I can be when I believe something is important. Perhaps I learned this from my grandparents, who rebuilt everything they had from scratch after being displaced after the Second World War. 

After several unsuccessful product trials, we found an idea that is now used by active customers and has received a lot of positive feedback. This is Rabbit, a tool bridging the cloud cost transparency gap between Management and Engineering.

I hope that this will be a good start for my 20-year anniversary article. I don't have a time machine yet, but my goals include scaling up the small startup mentioned into a larger product company and to be able to grow along with the task at hand. I would also like to squeeze in another paternity leave. 🙂

I promise to write the next episode again in 10 years. 

Aliz Team
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