As part of our ‘Galway’s Calling’ series, we interview one person each month to find out why they’ve chosen Galway, what the tech scene looks like to them, and to hear about their career story to date. This time around, Trevor Murray had the pleasure of speaking with Richard Rondu, a Senior Software Developer with PorterShed member KAPPTURE.
“I’ve had a bit of a weird career,” Richard starts by saying with a smile when I ask him to give me a condensed history of himself.
“My aim in life is to wake up every morning and enjoy what I do at work. I spent my time first as an electrical engineer as a project manager, and then I spent one year teaching. After this, I went back to programming where I was doing audio work, but still in software development.
“Then, I went to live in a small island called Réunion, just near Madagascar and Mauritius, where I sold whiskey as a whiskey expert. The place I worked is one of the biggest suppliers of whiskey in Europe.”
Following a two-year stint on the Indian Ocean island, Richard decided it was time to return to Paris to work in IT as a freelancer while also teaching electronics and programming for around four years.
While there, he decided he wanted to make a move again – to another island – this time, it was Ireland’s turn, and while it didn’t quite have the exotic appeal Réunion did, Richard couldn’t be happier to be based here on the west coast, far removed from the sunny vibes of the French Department, as he explains.
“We were looking for a place where, when you walk through the streets you recognise people. So, we went to Ireland for three weeks to look around, and we really loved Galway. So, I decided to start looking around Ireland for a job and I found a job with Kappture. We are really happy in Galway – while it’s a small town, it has a lot of culture and there is always something happening; people are really welcoming.
“And with the job itself, I really enjoy it. I’m really fond of the technologies and the way they work for the point of sales,” Richard explains.
For Richard, too, the environment that surrounds KAPPTURE – the PorterShed – was a really important part of the reason he decided to come to Galway.
A significant part of Richard’s role is to help connect people to the entertainment they love best through efficient and seamless POS systems, and on a personal level, there’s a symmetry in that he loves making connections with others, something the PorterShed comfortably facilitates with its interpersonal vibe.
“When I heard that KAPPTURE was working in a shared space, I was really happy because I like meeting new people,” he says, adding that the social elements and togetherness of the community are two things he really admires.
Drawn to the interconnected nature of Galway and its overall vibe, Richard is quite complimentary, too, of the tech scene in Galway. Being a senior software developer with a very fast-growing company means that Richard can see the positives of living here – and there are many.
“I think for a small town like this, it’s very strong actually, and there are a lot of different tech developments happening which is great.
“It feels like it’s getting stronger and stronger, and the PorterShed is right in the middle of it,” Richard says, before going on to explain that it is very different from the Parisien tech scene he once knew where it was more difficult to share ideas and exchange new perspectives, something that happens quite seamlessly in the PorterShed owing to the myriad of different cultures and companies that it is home to.
With years of experience to his name – and having followed quite a niche journey over the years, it’s interesting to hear what Richard believes is the one thing budding techies need in order to succeed in the industry – and his answer is quite telling.
“I think passion is a priority…if one day I have a company, I would prefer to hire someone who has done two years of college and is passionate than someone who doesn’t care at all but has an engineering degree or a Master’s degree. You’ve got to have a really open mind – never be sure about anything, try to discover new things every day, talk to people, and have passion.”
By Trevor Murray