Meet Soapy’s Team: Pavel Semchenko #WhyWeWash

November 26, 2020 Ofir Broides Vavker

Pavel Semchenko, Soapy’s DevOps Engineer

A little bit about myself

I’ve been working in the field for nearly 12 years, since 2008. I’m a very tech-savvy guy, I love cutting edge informational technologies and modern gadgets of any kind, which is why working in the DevOps and cybersecurity field fits me so well. I’m also a pilot, and I’m very interested in maintaining a healthy lifestyle – so working at Soapy well suits my interests all around. I came to Israel from Russia two years ago, and it really is a “high-tech nation”. I’ve found incredible companies here with smart solutions that improve mankind – solutions that seemed like real sci-fi to me just a few years ago. I took part in the MASA project for cybersecurity education and I finished my studies at the Technological College of Beer-Sheva and got my cybersecurity certificate. After finishing the project I had the choice to either stay in Israel or move back to the Russian Federation – I chose to stay because I see so many opportunities here for self-improvement. 

Being a DevOps Engineer

Being a DevOps Engineer is all about constantly improving your skill set, as well as your mindset. It’s challenging, you are constantly growing. Being a DevOps engineer is a slightly different job here in Israel than it is in Russia. In the Russian Federation, there’s a law that says no data can be stored outside of Russian territory, so you can’t use popular cloud services. There’s a wider range of solutions here, and I’ve been busy educating myself on them.

Getting work done

I have to ensure that all of our software products are delivered as fast as we can with the best quality to our clients. From a new version release to other improvements – I’ve made sure that it reaches the clients in five minutes. Ideologically speaking, I’m in charge of finding the best way for our software products to reach our clients, fast and safe. 

I met Marat, our Senior Product Manager, through the “Growth Point” project in Beer-Sheva where he was one of the co-founders, and he recommended I come in for an interview. It was one of the most interesting interviews I’ve ever been on! It wasn’t a conventional interview at all – we didn’t talk about the manual or the usual things you talk about. Alex, our CTO, has believed in me from day one. I think what Alex truly saw in me was the passion I had, how interested I am in this subject.

I get this sense of accomplishment whenever we overcome a small obstacle. I feel like I’m always growing here. The most challenging parts about working with Soapy is the fact that we improve daily – we have so many new ideas and it’s part of my job to ground them and bring them to life in a way that can reach the customer, even if it means scratching off some cool ideas.

Why we wash

Since before working at Soapy, I was extremely bothered with the consequences irresponsible hand hygiene was having on the environment. Every time I’d wash my hands I’d look at the liters of water going to waste, the amount of soap, and would feel uneasy. It didn’t feel like the smart way to go about things at all. Working at Soapy, I realized we can improve this process. In modern aircrafts, we have special systems with sensors to help us avoid wastage of water and soap. Here at Soapy, we’re using a similar class of system, to finally stop wasting these valuable resources. The Soapy-style hand washing can be a big change for man-kind, a literal milestone. It’s a new way to use an environmentally safe technology, every day.

Not a lot of people know how to wash their hands properly. It’s all about education. I think part of Soapy’s mission is to educate as many people as we can about the importance of handwashing.  Coronavirus has helped us realize that not all of our habits are as modern as they should be – especially when it comes to tackling the virus. We can, and should, do better. I wouldn’t call myself a hygiene-fanatic, but hygiene is important to me.

The same reasons we wash the fruit and vegetables we eat, the cutlery and plates we eat on – germs, bacteria, dirt – these are the same reasons we need to wash our hands thoroughly.  

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