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Get to Know Us: Meet Software Engineer James Steiner

DocuWarians is a blog feature that introduces you to the people behind the product. In this post, we're highlighting Software Engineer James Steiner. 

My responsibilities at DocuWare are…

Yellow and blue diagram of DevOps processAs a software engineer on the Solutions Development team, my tasks include the design, development and implementation of new product features. Embracing a modern Development and Operations Collaboration (DevOps) approach, my team is tasked with taking new and approved product ideas and turning them into fully functioning features that can be leveraged by our users. Once they’re implemented, we are also responsible for supporting the product features we develop and hosting the services in the cloud. Our team has been behind some of the latest and most exciting additions to the DocuWare product suite, such as DocuWare’s e-signature capabilities and DocuWare Export.

How did your background prepare you for this role?

Ever since my early college days, I’ve always wanted to be a software developer. I found the notion of taking ideas and concepts and creating something useful from them to be very appealing.

Old-fashioned computer on blue background I grew up around computers. My father worked for IBM and exposed me to the world of computers at a young age. I remember my first PC being an old IBM PC Jr (with a whopping 128 KB of memory). From there I eventually upgraded to an IBM PC XT, and then PC AT, and then to various PS/2 Models (Model 30, 70, 80, etc.). As I got older, my love of computers and my interest in creating new things pointed me towards a logical path of software development.

One of my first experiences in software development was using BASIC to develop an application to help my sister take her driver’s license test. I remember her needing to practice for her test and I thought that it would be neat if I could find a way to make it easier. So, I decided to take it upon myself to write a program in BASIC to assist her.

As I grew older, many jobs I had took me down the path of working with computers but not quite down the path of software development. I spent a lot of time working on high-end mainframe solutions for IBM, but always dealt with the hardware aspect. It wasn’t until I started working for DocuWare that I moved into the software side of things. Eventually, after a few years in Support and a few years in Professional Services, I made it to where I wanted to be; Development!

If I had to choose another career path it would be ...

I’ve always enjoyed teaching. I find a great appeal in sharing the things I’ve learned with others. It’s a wonderful thing to see the expression on someone’s face when you are able to teach them something and pass on something you’ve learned.

Martial artist performing one legged tornado kickIn my free time…

A lot of my free time is spent with my family. I am married, with two little kids (my son is almost 5 and my daughter just turned 3), and a highly energetic German Shepherd whose activity level knows no limits. When I’m not busy with my family, I spend a lot of time training in martial arts. I’ve been studying and teaching martial arts for over 25 years. I currently hold a 5th Dan (Black Belt) in Tang Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan. Through the martial arts, I have learned dedication and persistence and that has benefited greatly me in life both personally and professionally.

My favorite quote or motto is ...

On one hand, I’m a fan of the motto “No pain, no gain.” I find myself saying this to my family quite often (usually when I’m telling one of my kids to suck it up). Life is full of challenges. We face challenges nearly every minute, of every day. It is (in my opinion) how we deal with those challenges that defines us. If we can work through the difficult times and push forward, then we will always come out better and stronger. Those experiences help us to be better and to do better.

In my recent years of working in development, I’ve also become a fan of a saying or motto that my boss has frequently referenced… “Just because you can do it, does not mean you should do it.” That one will likely resonate with many of you who are familiar with the world of software development!

I’d like readers to know that ...

I want to thank DocuWare for giving me the opportunity to participate in this new blog. I’ve worked for DocuWare for a little over 9 years now (it seems like so long ago that I first interviewed here). Through my time here, I’ve worked in Support, Professional Services and now Development.

Each role has been an integral part of preparing me for the next. I’ve had the opportunity to meet a lot of great people (both in the company and amongst our customers). I’ve had the honor of teaching at DocuWorld and passing on many of the things I’ve learned. I’ve come to realize that each day is a new and exciting opportunity and that we are constantly challenging ourselves to expand our knowledge and keep pace with the rapid pace of technology.

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