It’s always fun whenever you meet a nerdy, successful Software Engineer who is into all things coding. They see and do things differently yet logically – unlike many out around – and that’s what makes them reach heights in relatively less time. This guy especially has stayed focused, been humble and has always hustled to reach heights.
Recently, I happened to interview a geek, trainer, and an engineer – Jayakanth Rajan, one of my colleagues from DCKAP. He is a successful programmer and a man of few words but has some pretty good feathers added to his cap such as:
- First among the two M2 Front End Developers in India.
- One among the few certified Magento U Instructors from India.
- First among the handful of M2 Professional Developers in India.
Indeed, this is an impressive feat that he achieved within a span of three years. To our surprise, he says “more titles are yet to come, thanks to my never-tiring hunger towards Magento”. We planned this interview to share his thoughts and ideology with fellow developers and programmers out there aspiring to shine brighter every day. What follows next are the transcripts of the interview for readers out there to get motivated and enthralled.
Q: Can you please introduce yourself to the community?
A: I am Jayakanth Rajan from Chennai (India). An engineering graduate, Magento 1 & 2 Certified Professional Developer currently working for DCKAP for the last three years. I have been developing extensions in both Magento 1 & 2 and worked on various projects involving complex business logic. Also, I am a Magento U Authorised Trainer, providing training for developers from India.
Q: What is your current role at DCKAP?
A: Product Lead (CLORAS, a middleware between any digital commerce platform and any ERP)
Q: CLORAS, a middleware? That sounds interesting. Can you say more about it?
A: CLORAS is an amazing product that I am working on for the past few months, which simplifies all aspects of digital commerce integrations and helps customers to sell smarter, better, and faster. It acts as a middleware between ERP, CRM, and any eCommerce systems. However, it’s not limited to eCommerce platforms alone but designed in a way to scale, to any platform.
Q: Apart from CLORAS what was your role/achievement in DCKAP?
A: Contribution to CLORAS has been for past 5 or so months and before that, I was a part of Extensions team at DCKAP responsible for developing few useful Magento extensions to the community. In fact, I’ve contributed quite a lot to extensions available in the DCKAP store.
Q: That sounds great. Do you pick a long-daunting problem and develop an extension or how do you get the idea?
A: The ideas, actually, come from our team in the initial stages and later from understanding the pain points of our customers. The change in the approach brings us the exponential growth in sales front because it’s a win-win situation for both – our customers (solves their problems) and us (extension getting sold).
Q: What are the best selling extensions that make you proud and happy?
A: Advanced Sample Orders, Tax Exemption and Quick order are some of the best selling extensions, which do a great job in creating more traffic in the store, solving the key pain points of customers. Even in the recent newsletter, Magento has mentioned about our ‘WordPress Integrated Search‘ extension. Felt good to see it.
Q: When did you start to work on Magento and how did you get to know about it in the first place?
A: I started working on Magento 4 years ago, right after the college. My first company is a Bangalore-based one and they used Magento for developing the eCommerce stores. That way, I started working on Magento and like everyone, I found it hard initially but then I picked it up. Later, I started loving Magento and of course, the community as well.
Q: Have you conducted or contributed to any Magento Events or Meetups?
A: I have attended the “Magento Live India 2017” event, also participated in the code contribution conducted by Magento the next day in Bangalore. Post that, I have also co-organized a contribution event in Paypal Office, Chennai (Magento Distributed Contribution Day 2018).
I have participated in about nine meetups organized by Chennai Magento Meetup Community and presented in 4-5 meetups out of them.
Q: What one tip would you like to share with fellow/aspiring Magento developers?
A: Actually, three tips…
- Understand what you are doing, only then, code (not only to Magento developers but to all). Coding is easy, understanding in the right context is difficult.
- Be active on the community; like contributing, attending events around you and so on. These things teach you so much that your work environment can’t and this makes a huge difference.
- Don’t stop with “HOW”, always ask “WHY” too. When we want to customize something in Magento, we google immediately – “How to customize so and so…?” and of course, we end up in finding a solution and move on. I insist every developer ask a question before moving on – “Why Magento made you customize something in a particular way?”
For example, Why we have to write all our controllers in the directory called “Controller”? Why can’t this be something else?
Q: As a Magento U Authorized Instructor, how many developers have you trained so far?
A: Around 20+ developers.
Q: Congratulation on successfully completing the Magento 2 Certified Professional Developer and Front End Developer certification. What are the benefits of the Magento certification and how can we clear the certification?
A: Thank you.
The most important benefit you will get is, you will stand out from your colleagues or other developers. It also helps you in your career prospects since your profile will be preferred or it will get you more business if you are an entrepreneur.
It takes a lot of effort to clear the certification. The exam is mostly practical and has very few theoretical questions. However, if you are working in Magento 2 for more than 1.5 years or so, you can give it a try. Else, you can try working on all the areas, do exercises and then face the exam.
BEST OF LUCK FOR YOUR EXAM!!!
Q: You are an inspiration for many because of your expertise & firsthand knowledge of Magento, however, we would like to know about people who influenced you. Name any 3 people who have been your most influential mentors or role models in your profession?
A: I have been inspired by many great people. I am super glad to name few of them.
- Vinai Kopp – Influential Magento Trainer
- You – Mohan Natarajan – Indeed you’ve been a great mentor and an amazing lead. To say it out loud, you motivated me to do all these certifications and hola! Here I’m with flying colors.
- Marius Strajeru and more active contributors – for their incredible contributions to the community
Q: Can you name some people that you follow?
Q: How do you spend your time besides work?
A: I love to play table tennis and football, apart from my work. Reading books and exploring other interesting technologies are my hobbies.
Q: What book are you currently reading and can you suggest one right away?
A: Currently, “The One Minute Manager” by Ken Blanchard and Spencer Johnson. I suggest this, as well:)
Q: Can you please share your workstation picture?
A: That will be so clumsy. I am sure you won’t like it :p
Q: Thanks, Jay. It was a great conversation and I’m sure your words and ideas would be of great learning to fellow developers and people longing to set a footprint in software development.
A: I too feel proud and glad to be of part of a conversation about my success co-ordinated by the person I admire the most. It really means a lot to me and I’m sure that my contribution to Magento and developer community is here to stay for long.