Settling down for the long haul at 14 West - Technical.ly Baltimore

Professional Development

Settling down for the long haul at 14 West

Robert Evans has years of experience in the tech industry, but finally found the right place to develop a long-term career at 14 West.

Inside the offices of 14 West.

(Photo by Kristin Dudley)

Out of the 20 years he’s spent in the tech industry, DevOps architect Robert Evans has learned the most at 14 West since joining the team in 2019.

“14 West gives you the time and leeway to learn,” Evans said. “That’s embedded into the culture here.”

14 West is a Baltimore-based business services firm that supports clients with a variety of services, including personnel management, legal guidance and technology. Evans’ former employer, Social Solutions, was bought out, leaving him unemployed. After searching for tech jobs, he landed at 14 West and joined the company’s tech vertical about two years ago.

Evans and the DevOps team are responsible for maintaining the backend of the software used by 14 West’s affiliates — The Agora companies — across the globe.

14 West’s dexterous working environment makes it feel like you’re always using the “latest and greatest tools in tech,” Evans said. In his day-to-day work, he is focused on keeping 14 West on “the cutting edge of containers when it comes to Kubernetes and OpenShift.”

Read more for a Q&A with Evans and learn more about what it’s like to work for 14 West.

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How does your team stay organized? 

Any time we are headed toward a new initiative, it usually starts from a point of collaboration during a group discussion or meeting. Then, we may set up a committee to head that project. We always have an integrated planning process that maps goals and provides the team quarterly deadlines. The integrated planning process also allows my DevOps team to see when we will need help from other squads at 14 West, so we can plan out that intra collaboration.

This is a real plus of working for 14 West. Not only does our team act on really great ideas, but we also have guardrails set up so we can make tangible progress.

Robert Evans. (Courtesy photo)

How do you feel about your professional development at 14 West?

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The maturity of the company means they take initiative very seriously. If 14 West notices an employee taking charge in a department, they don’t just sit back. 14 West will invest in that person, hear out new ideas and act on change. For new processes, they may bring in consultants, and they always give the team the appropriate amount of training and time to learn.

This company has the ability to be flexible, but is very serious and mature in its process which makes for teamwide engagement and success.

What’s another perk of working at 14 West?

When it comes to consistency, with overall people management, they’re really great. 14 West has clients all over the world, and the HR people that support our affiliates take care of our staff internally. I always feel like I have a mature, well-organized HR department to turn to with any questions.

Plus, in general, 14 West takes care of their employees. I feel really comfortable planning a future here.

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