Category Archive: Noders: meet our employees

  1. Sam Foulger – designing workflows that give our members super-powers.

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    As a Product Manager, Sam Foulger ensures we build solutions that meet the customer’s needs. That includes working closely with our operator and broker members to understand the challenges in their daily workflows and discuss potential solutions. Our team of designers and developers can then identify what we can solve by building features and solutions that cater to the actual needs of our members.

    “I’ve been working specifically with charter workflows, making it seamless all the way from sourcing to reconciling payments. Great software products should make their users feel super-powered, and make them feel that they can do more with their day than they ever realized was possible.”

    A workday with different systems and manual communication between team members can make it difficult to get a good overview of what the status is on a trip. The result of our teams’ work is a full integration of the charter booking flow collecting quotes, contracts, and payments in one place.

    Sam explains, “One of my favourite features is the digital contracting. Instead of a manual booking workflow including PDFs and e-mails, you can now easily create a contract from your quote in one click, get it signed by the customer, and your whole team is notified automatically.”

    Whether you’re an Operator or Broker, we’ll help you explore our seamless charter booking flow and its unique benefits for you. Get in touch with our team so that we can understand your needs and show you our essential solutions that build the enhanced booking flow.

    ABOUT SAM
    Sam Foulger is one of our Product Managers based in Portland, Oregon, USA. He not only lives to create great software products but is also a former self-employed jazz drummer, keen photographer, and rollerblader outside of work hours.

  2. The marketing internship that raised the bar for the future

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    What made you apply for an internship with Avinode Group?

    I applied for this position since I’ve always been interested in marketing and the tech sphere. I’ve mostly heard about B2C marketing and wanted to learn about B2B marketing since it’s not something they ever talk about in school.

    I was also interested in the aviation industry and what it is like working in an international company where everyone comes from so many different cultures and work backgrounds.

    Why did you want to try marketing?

    I’m studying for a bachelor’s degree in Economics, and marketing is a part of it, but I wanted to see if there is a difference between theory and practice. No shock there – there is a big difference! 

    What have been your main tasks in the marketing team?

    I was tasked with creating a new social media plan, which was exciting to me and a dream come true given that I’ve always been interested in how companies work with social media. One of my tasks was also to define and build a structure for the company brand guidelines. It has been very interesting, and I often broke my own rules. Working here has given me a better idea of what I want to do in the future.

    What has been most challenging?

    I have a new-found respect for graphic designers! I never thought I’d need to think so much about color codes and file formats, or the weight of a downloadable file. I thought “How can it be too heavy when it’s in the cloud”. I have come out of this with a new-found confidence and new knowledge, and as a bonus, I’m now an expert at hosting Zoom meetings.

    So, what did you think about the Avinode Group work culture?

    At first, I was surprised – this is not what I thought the corporate world would be like. My idea of office work was that it would be the typical 9 to 5 job where I would be the intern serving coffee and doing admin work. Instead, I’ve been able to set my own working hours, working from home or the office, and I’ve been allowed to take initiative and create my own projects. I’ve felt very welcomed and was treated as an equal, even without any previous experience. 

    Would you recommend being an intern at Avinode Group?

    Definitely! I really enjoyed working in the marketing team but I can definitely see that as an intern in any department of the company, you would have the same freedom and support as I’ve experienced. I now have much higher expectations for my next job or internship.

    I hope anyone who gets a chance to work here jumps at the opportunity.

    Interested in an internship?

    Reach out to us to learn more about our internship opportunities! We’re happy to answer all your questions, and why not stop by for a visit and a fika at the Gothenburg HQ?

    Learn more about the Noder Nation and our work culture

  3. Alex Hanrahan – Providing solutions to high-flying problems with her roots firmly planted in aviation.

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    Alex, tell us about yourself and what you do at Avinode Group.

    I’m a Senior Product Manager with Avinode Group, part of our US-based Product and Engineering team. I work primarily with our flight operations solution, Schedaero. Most of my colleagues are based in Portland, OR, but I’m based in Florida. I love the sunshine, water-related sports and activities, so I’m in the right place.

    I was so excited to join Avinode Group, since this job combines my background in both private aviation charter and software development. It’s the perfect combination of these two passions of mine.


    That background must help you understand the challenges of our customers.

    Yes, I believe it does. It gives me an inherent understanding of some of the problems that our customers face.  I love being able to relate to the end user and give them a tool that makes their lives better. I’ve worked with everything from fueling aircraft, to flight scheduling, in a broker company and as Director of Charter Sales. I also worked with development of the Satcom Direct product, so I have seen many different parts of the industry.


    What are some of the challenges you would like to help solve?

    Communication between the front office of a flight department and the pilots is a very common challenge. Information and details are often dropped when there are constant updates going back and forth. We have several updates planned for our crew app, that will make it a tool you can’t live without.

    Charter operations is complex with many moving parts and many systems inherit that high complexity. It requires a lot of training to run the operation smoothly. That’s why I’m excited to work with the user interface of our products. We have a clear ambition to provide an easier day-to-day workflow with an intuitive user interface in our platform.


    What is a typical working day like in your role as PM?

    The day to day changes – the consistent aspect of every day is a development team standup. I love to sync up and check-in with the teams that work on the improvements and new features we are building, Also talking to customers and working with our amazing customer success team to help understand the end users wants and needs, is really wonderful.


    What surprised you in the Avinode Group work culture?

    It’s impressive how we manage to stay connected between teams, especially considering that we are mostly working remote. We have fun ways to share information over Slack and bring individuals closer that wouldn’t typically work together. In Zoom meetings I’ve noticed that everyone have their camera switched on. It helps our social culture and relationship-building to see all the smiling faces!


  4. Elisa Diener – What it means to be the crucial first point of contact for our Paynode customers..

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    Hi Elisa. As Customer Success Manager Payments, tell us a little about a day
    in your life at Avinode.

    Firstly, I always grab a coffee before doing anything – I love that first cup in the
    morning. Then, as my role is to build relationships with our customers, it means
    getting the newly activated Paynode members onboarded and comfortable with the
    system. For the members that already are active on Paynode, I’m the main point of
    contact for any questions or issues they may have.

    I may find myself onboarding a new Paynode client, which entails setting them up,
    taking them through how the system works and answering their questions. I tend to
    make the session conversational; a two-way dialogue rather than me just demoing it.
    That way they can understand how Paynode can meet their specific business
    needs.

    Each day I also work closely with the account managers, and we talk a lot to ensure
    we have a proper alignment with our customers.
    Then there’s the regular day-to-day support queries that come my way. A user may
    be having a payment hiccup or need help with the system. I make sure I’m on top of
    those questions straight away.


    That speed of response must be very important in your role

    Absolutely. It’s vital that when a customer reaches out for support, I respond quickly.
    Even if I don’t have an answer right away, they need to feel they’ve been heard. Part
    of this is also listening to their feedback on how we can make Paynode and our
    service even better. We’ve implemented some of the suggestions from customers
    into the product, which is nice.


    You have a banking background I believe

    That’s right, I spent about 16 years in the banking world. I studied Business
    Administration with a Major in Finance at the University of Texas El Paso. I went
    there on a tennis scholarship, and it was quite a culture shock to go from Sweden to
    living in the US right by the Mexican border, but I loved it.

    After graduating I spent one semester as a volunteer assistant coach with the tennis
    team, then I went to work at Morgan Stanley as a Financial Advisor Trainee. From
    there I moved to Chicago to work at Merrill Lynch.


    And then you moved back to Sweden

    Yes, I returned in 2009 to join SEB, one of the largest banks in Sweden. But there
    came a time when I wanted to try something new and put my experience to use
    elsewhere. When I found Avinode and this role, I knew it would be a perfect fit for
    me.


    That must have been a big change in culture for you

    The culture at Avinode is certainly very different, but for the better.
    For a start, it’s easier to make a positive impact in your work. In a smaller group,
    your voice gets heard. You can sometimes get lost in a huge corporation, and there
    are so many layers of hierarchy.

    But here, it’s a flat structure and an open environment where everyone is
    encouraged to speak and contribute. You get to know everyone, all the way up to
    the CEO, and I like that.


    What would you say is the best aspect of your role?

    I just really love the interaction with colleagues and customers. The Avinode team is
    a fun group to work with and we have great social gatherings.

    As for my customers, they’re all over the world. Zoom calls work well but meeting
    face-to-face makes a big difference. I’ve been to London and Geneva and met
    customers in person and that’s always great. I look forward to doing more of that.


    And finally, do you still play tennis?

    No, I don’t play anymore. I was getting too frustrated with how I play today
    compared with how I played when I was twenty. But I do play paddle tennis with
    some colleagues, which is a lot of fun. And then there’s a lot of basketball these
    days instead, supporting my two daughters and my husband who coaches.

    I do, however, work out every morning before I start my workday. That’s my morning
    routine, the gym, then coffee. Then I’m ready to go.


  5. Jake Leggett – Setting customers on the right path to getting the most out of Schedaero

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    You’ve been with the business since January 2022, Jake. How have you found it?

    I’m really enjoying it. There’s a great culture here, which is one of the main reasons why I
    joined Avinode. I had a good feeling during the interview process that this would be a
    supportive place to work and that’s definitely been the case.

    In my previous role, I was the first remote worker in the company, so there wasn’t a lot of
    support for me. But Avinode has totally committed to remote working, which has made it very
    easy to integrate. From day one I had all the equipment I needed to work and connect with
    my colleagues.


    Is this your first role in the aviation industry?

    Yes, it is. Previously, I worked in the retail sector. I got into the customer success side of
    tech straight out of college before moving into the marketing side of things. So, although I
    had no aviation experience, I know all about the customer.


    As a Customer Activation Marketer, what does a typical day entail?

    The majority of my time is spent building automated journeys that help onboard
    customers and get them engaged with our products.

    There’s an extended team that I work closely with – the customer success managers, the
    account managers, and others – to gather and implement customer feedback. The goal is to
    find ways to better educate customers and help them make the most of Schedaero so issues
    don’t arise.


    And you work solely on Schedaero?

    Not exclusively, no. My core role is around Schedaero but I occasionally support the other
    teams with their marketing operations. That can include helping set up or review their
    automated journeys or getting customers into lists that we need to send to.


    You’re based in the US, but a lot of your colleagues are in Sweden

    That’s right. I’m in Ohio and we’re six hours apart, but we just make it work. We get plenty of
    time to connect and get to know each other. I’ll get out to Sweden soon enough though. With
    some of the new travel plans that are coming I can’t wait to meet the team in person.


    Ohio is a beautiful place. What do you like to do outside of work?

    My partner and I have a young son, so he keeps us pretty busy. But we love hiking and bike
    rides, and enjoying the nature around Ohio – there are lots of trails and national parks to
    explore.

    I really enjoy doing things around the house too. I always have a project on the go and you’ll
    find me outside, mowing the lawn and things like that. Then there’s my car, a Honda Civic
    SI, which I love modifying. I’ve had it for about two and a half years and it’s a lot different
    now from when I bought it.


    Going back to your role, what is the biggest challenge you face moving forward?

    For Schedaero, we’ve essentially restructured the entire business from the customer
    success side, and the sales side, and I’ve done a lot of different things on the marketing side. So,
    right now, the challenge is how we scale all of that.

    As a team, we have so many ideas for what we’d like to do but because of the way the
    business used to be, we don’t have all the support needed in different areas. But we’re
    getting there. Right now we’re catching up on our tech stack and building more resources for
    our data that will help us better optimize the journeys we have running.

    Basically, the opportunity is to find creative ways to use what we have now to engage
    customers and implement new technology and data to better optimize in the future. Meeting
    those challenges will launch us into a much better spot with our customers.


  6. Andreas Rosander – Keeping our accounts in check while keeping one eye on his next adventure

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    Tell us a little about your background, Andreas

    Well, I come from a small town in Sweden called Kungsör. I first moved to Gothenburg to study
    Business Administration at university, then after graduating I returned to my hometown and
    took a job in accounting.

    After a year working there I was contacted by Avinode through LinkedIn. I went to
    Gothenburg for an interview, and everything just felt right. One month later, in August 2019, I
    started with the company.

    I’ve been here ever since and I really like it. I have great managers and great co-workers.


    Does Gothenburg feel like home now?

    Yes, it does. Obviously, life in Gothenburg is quite different to Kungsör, but I’ve been living
    here for 10 years and I’m very settled.


    What does your job of accounting assistant entail?

    Day-to-day, I work closely with the sales department. I handle all the orders on the customer
    side – so accounts receivable – as well as supplier and customer invoices on the accounts
    payable side.

    I deal with customers all over the world, across Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa.
    And I take care of everything from sending out invoices, handling incoming payments, sales
    analysis… it’s a lot of accounting.


    What is the best part of your role?

    It’s hard to put my finger on just one aspect – it’s really a mix of everything. I’m given a lot of responsibility and control and my role is very flexible, which is an aspect I really enjoy.


    And how have you found working from home over the past couple of years?

    It has been ok, but of course I’ve missed my co-workers and the office environment. We
    moved into this fantastic new office in January 2020 and the sad thing is that we only got to
    enjoy it for a month before Covid meant we all had to go home to work.

    It was nice when we opened back up a few months ago and it feels great to be able to meet everyone
    again. As we’re now Flex Noders, we’re free to be in the office as much or as little as we want. I’m typically working at home three times a week now and spending one or two days in
    the office. That feels like a good balance.


    How would you describe Avinode to someone who has never heard of us?

    I would say that we’re a company that really feels like a small family. Even as we’ve grown –
    and we’ve expanded hugely in the time that I’ve been here – that feeling of family has never
    changed. We host events that include everyone, and we take care of each other – it’s a nice
    feeling.


    And away from work, what do you like to do?

    I love spending time with my friends and family. I travel back to my hometown a lot because I
    still have many friends there. We go hiking, to the movies, skiing in the winter, and play golf
    each year.

    We also go on crazy adventures. We’ve stayed in a cabin in the north of Sweden – which is
    supposed to be one of the most haunted places in the country – and we’ve also spent the
    night deep in a forest that is meant to be haunted too. It’s great fun and very exciting.


    And you’re also a football fan I believe?

    I am, yes, I love football. I support IFK Norrköping because that was my grandpa’s team. He
    actually played for them in the 1960s and also represented Sweden. So, they are my
    Swedish team.