#TechThursday Spotlight: Ticketmaster VP of Engineering Wojciech Jawor
You can’t build industry-leading innovations without investing in the development and growth of your employees. Nobody knows that better than Ticketmaster VP of Engineering, Commerce, Wojciech Jawor. As the creator behind Tech 101 – an Engineering and Tech employee onboarding program – Jawor has played an integral part in unlocking the infinite opportunities to impact the experience of millions of fans a day.
We spoke to him to get a firsthand account of working at Ticketmaster and his inspiration behind Tech 101:
Q: When did you start working for Ticketmaster?
I started in 2015 to set up an engineering organization for a newly established Distributed Commerce team. When my new organization matured, I gradually moved on to own Ticketmaster’s overall commerce platform.
Q: What were some of the factors that influenced your decision to join Ticketmaster?
The people that you work with have an enormous impact on your career. I chose Ticketmaster because I knew I would get to work with some of the best people in our industry on challenging problems at a nontrivial scale.
Q: What is Tech 101?
It is a program designed to introduce new Ticketmaster employees to our technology, to help them see the breadth of our platform and opportunities for growth that await.
Q: What were your reasons for creating Tech101?
We had a gap in training and onboarding new employees, and Tech101 is one of the tools we are using to fill it. It turns out, though, that many current employees find it useful as well because it provides the proper context for what we do and why. It also exposes them to areas they don’t have contact with regularly, which is always refreshing.
Q: How important is Tech101 to developing, training, and onboarding new tech employees?
The instant benefit of attending the training is getting to know most of our technology leaders in a relatively intimate setting. The connections you develop yield benefits over your entire career at Ticketmaster and beyond. We are a very diverse company, also in the technological sense. This session helps to frame and explain our platform, and then let our employees make most of it.
Q: What has been the general feedback you have received of the importance of Tech101 on their careers at Ticketmaster?
Feedback has been very positive. The program is very new, but we were able to hone in on the right structure very quickly. It wouldn’t be possible without the contribution of all the presenters. They have done a fantastic job. I have seen some sessions many times now, but they still keep me engaged – they are actual life performances worth seeing.
Q: Any cool projects you’re currently working on that you can share?
We are completely transforming the purchase experience on Ticketmaster.com. We have already introduced what may look like subtle changes on the front-end, but are game-changers for us as a company. For example, sometimes when you buy a ticket, you no longer see the timer…
I would also love to find time for some personal projects in 6502 assembly. Atari 800XL was my first computer, but I never got to programming in assembly until I got an Amiga with Motorola 68000. One day I’ll have to fill that gap.
Q: What excites you most about working at Ticketmaster? About our work culture?
The scale that we work at and the impact we have as a company. Reliving Cyber Monday every week is super challenging and exciting. I think as a company we are also very creative in solving problems. Sometimes in surprising and unusual ways.
Q: What advice do you have for anyone who wants to join Ticketmaster full time?
To be brave. Don’t worry about the little mistakes you may do along the way. In the end, you might just come up with something brilliant that transforms the company.
Q: Which live event are you most excited to see this year?
I recently saw Mark Knopfler at the Greek Theater. It was my first time at the Greek, and I enjoyed the show and the venue very much. Guy Fletcher (Mark’s keyboardist and producer) says performing in Los Angeles is always challenging – the audience is a very knowledgeable musical crowd and always has high expectations. So they always give a little extra here, and it showed on stage. Can’t wait for their next visit to LA.
Ticketmaster is the global market leader in live event ticketing processing over 500 million ticket transactions per year across 29 countries. Through exclusive partnerships with thousands of venues, artists, sports leagues, and performing arts centers and theaters, Ticketmaster delivers unparalleled access to the most iconic live events to millions of fans worldwide.