Why do you work at Stamped?

A short conversation between an accountant and a software engineer.

Posted on Jul 16, 2021

By Alex. Ouellet

Alexandre, our editor, recently sat down with Jonathan, our tech lead, and Alex D., our customer success manager in BC, to talk about why they work at Stamped. Here is what they had to say.

About Jonathan and Alex

Jonathan Rochette

Jonathan is a tech lead at Stamped, helping develop the platform's augmented technology applications. In his ten year career, he developed many cloud applications used by thousands of people ranging from analytics and machine learning platforms to the automation of phone number porting processes. He developed his software engineering and leadership skills at Coveo and LogMeIn, where he was both a software engineer and a team lead. Outside of work, Jonathan is passionate about the outdoors. You will find him on a mountain bike or backcountry skis when the weather allows it and playing a board game when it doesn't.

Alex Dundas

Alex has over four years of experience in assurance and cloud accounting.  He articled at Clearline CPA, where he worked with non-profit organizations and private companies in a variety of industries including e-commerce, food, construction and cryptocurrency. Prior to interning at Clearline CPA, Alex lived the dream of an entrepreneur: traveling and studying while operating a cloud accounting practice and a tree protection service.

A short conversation between an accountant and a software engineer.

Jonathan Rochette (Software engineer):

The main reason I wanted to work at Stamped was that it was quite small compared to my previous job at LogMeIn, which is a pretty huge business. I believe there are over 5000 or 6000 employees and probably 2000 software engineers or more. So, you end up feeling like a small fish in this gigantic pond. Another factor that pulled me towards Stamped was the heavily bureaucratic process to publish a piece of programming at LogMeIn. You'd have to talk with legal, sales, procurement, and all these other departments before something was published, which could take quite some time. This didn't bother me at first, but over time it got pretty annoying. At a certain point, I started to feel I wanted to join a business in the early stage, such as a Tech Startup that would present me with a new challenge. Timing-wise, it worked because Simon, the founder, poked me on LinkedIn at the time, leading to a few in-person conversations over a cup of coffee.

I wouldn't say that the accounting aspect was the most interesting at first for me because that's something that as a developer, you really don't know much about. The only accounting stuff I dealt with in my life as a software engineer before working at Stamped was when I did my taxes at the end of the year. When I got to talk with Simon about the automation and machine learning aspect of what he was proposing, that got me excited. It checked a box on my list of things I was looking for in this new challenge. I often say this to other software engineers, it's not so much the subject matter at hand that we're tackling that interests me, but the technical challenge of bringing it to life that does. The technical challenges that Stamped posed me allowed me to grow my capacities as an engineer and develop other skills that I was not developing at my previous job.

Alex Dundas (CPA):

I came at it from a totally different perspective. I was working at a mid-sized regional firm in Vancouver as an auditor, and at the time, I worked with one of the partners to develop a presentation on the concept of the continuous audit and how to apply that to NPO's. I presented at CPA Canada’s NPO forum in early 2020. It was through that experience that I connected with Simon.

We got to talking about trends in the accounting field and how audit was trailing behind. At the time, he was one of the only people talking about the concept of the continuous audit and how to make it happen. Simon’s energy and enthusiasm for pushing the industry forward got me excited about Stamped. Also thinking about how we can integrate AI into our workflow really opened my mind to how our field is going to change in the next 10 years. The accounting field is somewhat resistant to change. Accountants are often slow to innovate. We like to know something works before we try it. Simon, on the other hand, is challenging decades old assumptions and reimagining what it means to be an accountant.

Jonathan Rochette (Software engineer):

That growth and disruption you talk about with accounting is what the software engineering community went through in a compressed time span. This year is going to be my 10th year in software engineering, and in that span of 10 years, so much has changed. We were cutting edge and in an industry that was completely disrupting the world but initially, Coveo, where I started my career, was only doing one production release every few months. These releases had to happen on a Saturday night to make sure that there was no impact when we deployed these releases. This made it a lengthy, pretty complicated process, and on top of that, you did not sleep that night. Fast forward ten years to today. We are capable of doing multiple releases daily with the evolution of the technology that now exists in the industry.

Alex Dundas (CPA):

I'd love it if we could get there with accounting and, more specifically, with auditing. There’s an opportunity here to take the lessons from how the software industry evolved and transmit them into the audit field. That’s something worth exploring because there are so many administrative and repetitive tasks that are a part of the audit process. What’s great about Stamped is that we’re extracting those administrative tasks from the process and making the workflow more about professional judgment, the interaction with the client and creating a more transparent audit process.

Jonathan Rochette (Software engineer):

Also, what attracted me to Stamped is the opportunity to wear more hats. In engineering, we’re currently five people working on the app. As opposed to LogMeIn, where I was the team lead of a team of 11 people. I used to work on one specific part of an application, whereas now in a team of five we’re building out an entire app. I definitely feel that I have a bigger impact day to day. I also like it because it allows me to do different things.

As you can tell Stamped is not your regular workplace. Ambition and curiosity drive our effort every day. If you relate to those values let us know, you might be the right fit for Stamped.