CloudSense Solution Architect, Hrvoje Tutman, is leveraging the I2N's links to University of Newcastle graduate talent to build his R&D team here in the City.
Everyone agrees that Newcastle is going through a transition, particularly when it comes to business and industry. New sectors that leverage advances in technology are emerging alongside traditional sectors such as energy and advanced manufacturing. Companies such as CloudSense are opening offices in Newcastle to better access local talent and changing the makeup of industries within the region in the process.
Hrvoje Tutman moved to Newcastle from his native Croatia in 2017 with his wife and children. He first joined CloudSense’s research and development team in 2012 in Zagreb. He describes himself as a “solution architect”. He has a degree in theoretical physics and has worked in IT and telecommunications most of his life.
He said CloudSense builds products and works with CPQ software. (CPQ is a term used in the business-to-business industry and it stands for Configure, Price, Quote.) CloudSense allows sellers to quote complex and configurable products.
“Our main application is called Configurator. It’s an application built on top of Salesforce, and Salesforce is a global Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and cloud platform. Salesforce is similar to Oracle or Google; they provide their own platforms, so companies and partners can build and host their applications on the platform. We are one of their partners. We’re using Salesforce and its tooling to build additional products which will add extra value to traditional Salesforce options,” Hrvoje says.
All kinds of different companies use Salesforce, including telecom companies, media companies and universities. Accounts typically go through various stages before they sell something, and Salesforce generically manages that process.
Hrvoje said, for example, if you are in a book store, you can’t modify the books you are selling, but with telecom options there are very few off-the-shelf services.
“With a telecommunications company, their products are very configurable. They can be regular retail for residential and also business oriented. When you want to buy a mobile phone there are so many options and tariffs. You can choose a mobile phone based on a device with different plans and prices. Then maybe based on those decisions, you will get more discounts. Maybe you will have additional services you can include. Then combine all of that with triple play. Your fixed line service may have NBN and Foxtel on top of that. Maybe that is only available on certain configurations,” Hrvoje says. “That’s where CloudSense comes in with their CPQ solution.”
There are 400 employees of CloudSense globally. Four years ago they opened offices in Sydney and Melbourne. They saw the need for engineering and R&D in Australia to service time zone differences. They chose Newcastle for their engineering office, partially because they wanted to establish a relationship with the University of Newcastle to access graduate developer talent.
“When I arrived it was only me and a local contractor. We started interviewing, trying to find the right place to start,” he says. “On our first day we came to the Integrated Innovation Network (I2N) and that was wonderful.”
The two were searching for co-working places in Newcastle and quickly decided to work from the I2N Hub Hunter Street. They liked its connection with the University and that it was in the center of the city near the light rail. CloudSense are enthusiastic about the new Innovation Hub, co-located with the University’s School of Creative Industries at Honeysuckle and due for completion at the end of 2020.
Once they set up shop, Hrvoje’s primary job was to recruit people and train them into the business. So far he’s employed three developers, two of whom were recent graduates from the University of Newcastle. CloudSense also offers internships in collaboration with the University for computer science students as well. “We find these programs quite beneficial with the Uni,” Hrvoje says. “In the future we will be looking at getting more graduates through here as our juniors grow. We like I2N very much and plan on staying.”
CloudSense’s small Newcastle-based team of bright engineers are a valuable part of the I2N community and a part of the region’s burgeoning tech scene.