Employer Highlight: Chameleon Power

Jennifer Naasz, Eric Arbour, Lauren Leohner

In today’s fast-moving tech world, it can be difficult for companies to keep up and ensure their technologies match the needs of their customers. Enter Chameleon Power.

As an industry leading provider of web and mobile visualization and design technologies, Chameleon Power is helping companies bring their products and services to life. Their work helps create virtual showrooms and provide seamless connection between manufacturers, retailers and consumers. To make this all possible, Chameleon relies on a talented and innovative team of developers, including a group of Grand Circus grads!

To learn more about their company and what advice they would give to someone thinking about starting a career in tech, we caught up with Chameleon Power’s CTO, Ned Kalinovic, and two GC Bootcamp graduates on the team, Jennifer Naasz and Eric Arbour.

Q&A With Chameleon Power

How would you describe your organization and what does your team try to solve?

Chameleon Power is a software company. Our core technology is called visualization and we make it possible for companies to help their customers to configure, design and view the outcome of a project in a photorealistic digital environment before beginning the project. Our software is dominant in building and remodeling and we have a large presence in home décor. We’re expanding in all markets where visualization is critical to the purchase decision.

Our visualization applications are proprietary, including our asset management technology and process.  Therefore, we work across all platforms, from 2D and 3D mobile and online applications, to Virtual and Augmented Reality.

How does Grand Circus prepare students for careers in tech?

Jennifer, Eric, Lauren gathered around desktop screens, smiling
Jennifer, Eric and Lauren are GC grads now working at Chameleon Power.

We have a handful of Grand Circus graduates employed at Chameleon Power. We’ve found them all to have a solid grasp of the basics, and more importantly, the vision to see the problem we’re attempting to solve with technology for the client, and work to address it with both focus and creativity. One of our GC grads, Jennifer Naasz, said GC also stressed collaboration with other students as part of their teaching approach.  There’s a high degree of collaborative work here, whether it’s working within a dev group, or working cross-functionally with groups like sales, UI/UX, or QA to insure the overall project goals are met.

What are you looking for when hiring programmers?

At Chameleon Power, we look for people who:  

1) Are smart and motivated to get things done,

2) Have a natural curiosity; who genuinely want to learn, understand their work, and are self-motivated to use and share their knowledge,

3) Have a growth mindset – they look for ways to improve themselves and their work, and

4) Play well with others.

One person wearing VR headset in the background, while three men work on computers

What advice would you give someone starting a career in tech?

Invest in yourself. Spend time reading about new technology or different programming languages. Take online classes. Join local meetup groups.   

It’s also a good idea to take advantage of coding tutorials and do a number of small personal projects before committing to a school, or a bootcamp like Grand Circus.  Development isn’t for everyone, and you don’t want to find out you don’t like coding mid-bootcamp.

More specifically, for someone without a background in tech or a computer science degree – what advice would you give them and what should they know going into tech?

Don’t be intimidated by others who have computer science degrees. If you are smart, work hard and have a good attitude you will be successful. A career in tech is 80% solving problems – so that’s what has to get you excited.

Learn independently, as well.  It’s important to be able to figure things out on your own.

What resources would you recommend to new developers?

In addition to Grand Circus, of course, our GC grads like online resources, like stackoverflow.com and udemy.com, for independent learning.  Our CTO likes pluralsight.com, codeschool.com and LinkedIn learning.

How do you support continued learning for your employees?

Chameleon Power provides in-house training programs, mentoring, recommended reading/book clubs and support meet-ups for employees.

Is there anything else you’d like people to know about CP, becoming a programmer, or Grand Circus?

Once you have the fundamentals of programming down, everything else is all positive attitude and strong work ethic. We’re always looking for good people, and we’ve found several of them through GC.  We value the relationship GC has built with the metro-Detroit community, and with Chameleon Power.

Thank you to the team at Chameleon Power for sharing their insight and for their continued support as a Grand Circus Hiring Partner!  We’re excited to see this partnership strengthen, and hope these insights will help future bootcampers prepare for the job hunt!