Thomas
von der Ohe

Co-Founder, CEO

WHAT DRIVES ME

You come across an opportunity to positively impact societies around the globe maybe once in your lifetime. An opportunity to truly make a difference. Our unique approach to autonomous driving gives us this chance: redefining how people move in a better way. Building and shipping a product with this great team is what drives me day and night.

BACKGROUND

Launched Zoox’ first self-driving vehicle on public streets as leading Technical Program Manager in Silicon Valley, launched Amazon’s first Echo as leading Technical Program Manager on Device Software, Founded two (funded) mobility companies. M. Sc. Computer Science & Product, Stanford University.

Fabrizio
Scelsi

Co-Founder, VP Automotive Engineering

WHAT DRIVES ME

I love to build products based on cutting-edge technology that nobody has built before in order to serve a greater purpose and solve problems – for the people, for our planet. I am very proud we were able to create a diverse and inclusive team from all over the world to drive this impact.

BACKGROUND

Manager of an engineering team in Silicon Valley to build autonomous shuttles, built teams and various mobility products: electric race cars, e-motorcycles, light electric vehicles, electric passenger vehicles, including one of the most successful electric delivery vehicles in Germany. RWTH Aachen, Imperial College London.

Bogdan
Djukic

Co-Founder, Director Engineering, Teledrive Experience

WHAT DRIVES ME

Vay is aiming to launch the first vehicle without a safety driver on public roads in Europe. This involves exciting engineering challenges, many of which have never been worked on before, ranging from autonomous vehicle technology, cybersecurity, backend, machine learning and safety-critical SW. Coming up with engineering solutions to these topics is something that I’m super excited to work on at Vay.

BACKGROUND

Team Lead at Microsoft, Senior Software Engineer at Skype. M. Sc. in Computer Science from Belgrade University.

Mariona
Bosch

Director of Engineering Operations

WHAT DRIVES ME

Working closely with people from different cultures and professional backgrounds (hardware, software, operations, etc.) gives me the chance to learn new ways of approaching projects, structuring teams, and setting up processes every day. The results of this incredible teamwork are hugely rewarding, and visible in each step of our product.

BACKGROUND

Part of the management circle at AUDI AG, responsible for the implementation of prototypes at early development stages of new products (innovation vehicles, concept and pre-series vehicles, show cars, design models, testing single parts, PoCs, 3D-printing)

Daniel
Buchmueller

SVP Engineering, Software

WHAT DRIVES ME

To learn every day, and to build cool things as well as engaged and high performing teams at the intersection of software & hardware. I believe in applying first principles, a collaborative and open approach to build products that change people’s lives for the better.

BACKGROUND

Director of Engineering at Boring company (SW, Mechanical engineering, EE, technicians, System), Co-founder Amazon Prime Air, CTO at Volansi (autonomous drone startup in San Francisco that raised $75m), VP, Head of Drone Cargo, Airbus. Built and shipped the (image matching and augmented reality) services for the iOS Bing App and operating system for Windows Phone.

 

Hans-Leo
Ross

Director of Safety

WHAT DRIVES ME

All my professional life I have been working for the protection and safety of people and the environment. I want to further provide safe and user-friendly automation systems for our future mobility needs.

BACKGROUND

25+ years experience in system safety at Conti., Mando, Bosch. Led the VDA working group in Germany to create ISO 26262 and influenced worldwide safety standardization. Author of several text books on functional safety.

Friederike
Reuter

Director of Business Operations and Strategy

WHAT DRIVES ME

Solving complex problems with ambitious and talented people who don’t accept the status quo. And having fun at the same time.

BACKGROUND

Political theorist turned economist turned venture builder. I hold degrees in economics from Harvard and Oxford, where I was a Rhodes Scholar, and spent a couple years as a consultant incubating and advising digital businesses at BCG.

Christian
Hertlein

Director of Product Design and Brand

WHAT DRIVES ME

Building the future of mobility, which is sustainable and truly serving the needs of people, by creating a holistic experience, a relatable brand and shaping services that are going to make a difference to how we move within and between cities.

BACKGROUND

Head of Global Design at N26, Senior Lead Designer at IDEO, in-car interactions for Volkswagen.

David
Gossow

Engineering Lead

WHAT DRIVES ME

After having worked in autonomous robotics research for a long time in the Silicon Valley, I am thrilled to be working at a company that is finally bringing this technology into people’s everyday lives.

BACKGROUND

Tech Lead at Google Tango in Mountain View, Research Engineer at Willow Garage, yoga instructor since 2018.

Vladimir
Bilonenko

Senior Engineering Manager

WHAT DRIVES ME

Helping engineers to do their best and most important work. Elegance in software. Bringing ideas from books to real life and from one domain to another. Going from A to B fast.

BACKGROUND

Software Generalist. Maps and Mobility Geek (Lon, Lat not Lat, Lon). High Load at Yandex, Geo Analytics and Last Mile at HERE Maps, Mobility Platform at Daimler. Conway’s Law Enthusiast.

Beatrice
Tîrziu

Software Engineer

WHAT DRIVES ME

The people around me. Seeing the team have such drive, determination and passion is unique and certainly contagious.

BACKGROUND

Having a B. Sc. and M. Sc. in Computer Science, I joined Vay as a Software Engineer in the company’s first months and early in my career. Still growing and learning together two years later.

 

ALINA
PRESTI

Teledriver

WHAT DRIVES ME

A car enthusiast, driven by cars, driving and technology.

BACKGROUND

Nursery school teacher. Driver at Skoda’s start-up Caredriver.

Meet Connaire Wallace, Global Talent Acquisition Manager 

Connaire Wallace is the Global Talent Acquisition Manager at Vay. His role is to streamline and lead our talent function to ensure we are best positioned to hire the world’s most exciting talent to lead mobility into a new age, while focusing on creating a diverse and inclusive culture across the company through innovative hiring strategies.

Connaire Wallace
Tell us a bit about your career before joining Vay. How did you get into talent acquisition?

I have always had a passion for people. I take great pleasure in meeting new people from all different walks of life, and for me, there is no better industry than talent acquisition to do this. My enthusiasm stems from my ability to help people achieve their dreams. I am fortunate to be able to help shape careers through my knowledge and advice, and see people achieve goals they have been striving for since they left school, or even take their careers in a different direction.

I’ve had a wealth of experience in talent acquisition over the years, first on the agency side at Oho Group, a VC-funded company based in London where we built the Scottish business, and then at Adecco Group. My ambition has always been to build scalable processes that take into account factors like candidate experience, employer branding, data analytics, diversity and more, rather than just “hiring people.” This mindset led me into the startup world, where I worked at some of the most disruptive tech companies in the world, such as Klarna, which is now one of the most valuable private fintech companies in the world, before moving to Rasa, which is pioneering AI platforms for open source and enterprise customers.

What do you consider to be the state of the art in recruitment and how do you implement it at Vay?

The most fundamental aspect of creating a team of world-class talent, in my opinion, is trust. This should be at the heart of everything we do. A relationship without trust is like a car without power. You can stay in it but it won’t go anywhere.

In the talent space, the first thing we need to do is build a base layer of processes that provide the foundation for long-term trust with hiring teams, external stakeholders and candidates alike. 

Ensuring our data quality is high and our communications are accurate and timely will allow us to truly engage with stakeholders to grow our teams. 

Candidate trust is also more important than ever in 2022. We are no longer in a market where candidates accept the first offer they receive. This has led to a positive shift in mindset, which means that interviews are conducted in a way that reassures the candidate that the company they work for is the right place for their career. With all the applicants I have the pleasure of speaking to, the main criticism of companies is communication, or the lack of it. Wherever possible, we should provide personal feedback to applicants, whether positive or constructive, to create awareness in the marketplace that we care about the experience applicants have with us, regardless of whether they end up working for us or not.

What makes Vay exciting as an employee?

Where to start? There are so many reasons! 

Personally, I love being at the forefront of technology to create a new future. That’s something Vay offers in abundance. The chance to be involved in a challenge that will change the way mobility operates, first in Europe and then globally, gives us all the opportunity to create a real legacy in our careers – who wouldn’t want that?!

As a company, we are less than 4 years old, but have an incredibly diverse team from over 30 countries. The exposure, education, and collaboration of different ideas/concepts that come from such a diversity of cultures and backgrounds is the formula for incredible innovation opportunities. 

We also have some of the most creative and intelligent minds in the technology and automotive industries on our team and among our investors. It’s truly incredible to work with these people on a daily basis and have an environment that fosters continuous development on both a professional and personal level.

How do you figure out if somebody is a match for Vay? 

To successfully join Vay, we look for five consistent attributes that reflect our company values. 

To pioneer change

We need innovators, people who don’t rest on their laurels and share our vision: To solve transportation in metropolitan areas. Because  we do work that has never been done before, we need to constantly improve everything we do every day. It’s great to develop a 1.0 process, but to create a truly great company, we all need to constantly improve our products, processes and workflows to stay at the forefront of innovation.

To fuel collaboration

One of the most incredible things about Vay is the fact that our team combines talent from multiple worlds: from automotive and safety engineering to software, product, regulatory, operations and many more, which provides wonderful learning opportunities.. We also need people who are team players and confident enough to question decisions in a positive way, but who are also open to other points of view.

We drive action

We need employees to take responsibility for their own work as well as that of their team/function. We are all co-owners of Vay, so we owe it to ourselves to take positive action to ensure that the company continues to thrive and grow.

We build trust

We are looking for people who will follow through on their commitments, and if you don’t know how to do something, just ask! Humility is a great personality trait. We are all human and make mistakes. 

We create magic

Last and certainly not least we are a startup and a unique one in the automotive industry! We bring together talent from different industries and disciplines to add value to our product! That’s why we aim to foster ideas and collaboration, while innovation is at the heart of our daily ethos. Join us and dare to change the world of transportation! 

Can you tell us more about the hybrid format at Vay/remote working options?

At Vay, we foster an inclusive work environment that meets everyone’s needs.  

We have the opportunity to work fully onsite in our super cool waterfront office in “The Drivery” in Berlin, which is also home to many other automotive technology startups.

We have a 70% flex option, which means three out of ten working days (or more if you want) are spent in the Berlin office. This is the way the majority of the company works. It offers the best of both worlds and our office is one where employees really enjoy spending time! 

For those who work further away from Berlin or outside Germany, we also offer the possibility of remote work, which we wholeheartedly support. We also host two week-long company events in Berlin every year, called vConnect. This is a great opportunity to bring people together from all over the world to exchange ideas, share our successes and plan our future.

What do you hope to achieve at Vay?

To be a part of a company that creates history in Europe, to be at the forefront of how transportation moves into a new age. I want to support this by creating a talent function we can be proud of that supports cultural diversity and focuses on quality whilst we grow.

If our talent team continues to hire fantastic talent and Vay continues to make innovative leaps with our products, this will create a company that everyone in the mobility and technology industry will want to work for!  

What do you like to do when you are not working?

If it’s a sport I will play it! I’m a bit of a football fanatic and I’m a season ticket holder at Hibernian FC from Edinburgh (greatest football team in the world). 

The pandemic has also turned me into a bit of an evening gamer and you’ll often find me in the “Gulag” in Call of Duty – Warzone.

I have a wonderful one year old daughter, Harper, who has just started walking which now means all of the above is null and void, and I spend most of my free time shadowing Harper around the house and trying to prevent her from breaking her mummy’s ornaments!

Related Stories

Meet Christian Hertlein, Director of Design and Brand

Connecting, growing, building and having fun – good times at vConnect

How to measure glass-to-glass video latency?