Compass Plus at 30: Looking back
This year we’re turning 30. Birthdays are a cause for celebration and reflection and, as such, we’ve decided to take a look back on the last three decades and how we’ve changed – as a team and as a business. We sat down with some of the longest serving team members that have been with Compass Plus for 25+ years and have seen it all: from small local projects to international business expansion.
· Olga Derkacheva, Deputy Customer Services Director for Testing and Outsourcing
· Anatoly Kaptsan, Chief Software Architect
· Sergey Vaganov, Chief Platform Architect
· Evgeny Kolochkov, Senior Vice President & Chief Operating & Process Officer
· Vitaly Valeev, Head of Stress Testing Bureau
· Dmitry Valeev, Head of MPU
What role were you in when you started? What do you do now?
SV: I was a Chief Platform Architect – before Compass Plus, when I first started here, and I am still a Chief Platform Architect to this day 😊
EK: If I can remember correctly, my position at Compass Plus was Software Engineer when I first joined. Now, 25 years later, I am a Senior Vice President & Chief Operating & Process Officer.
VV: I was a software engineer when I first joined. Now I’m in charge of stress testing our software products and solving any performance issues.
DV: I joined Compass Plus in a group of young professionals, and each one of us was tasked with a specific project. Mine was software and hardware ATM configuration. I went to Germany where I received an additional qualification in that field and, after that, I became deeply involved with all ATM projects: from installation to connecting them to our processing centre. Nowadays, I’m in charge of a team that works with our customers on large-scale software projects.
Tell us your favorite Compass Plus memory
OD: Before joining Compass Plus, I worked at a factory as part of the team that was not involved in IT. That is why I was stunned by the level of IT expertise of everyone here and how many smart and passionate people work for such a small company. My colleagues would spend hours discussing their projects, pacing the long corridor and would stay at work late, sometimes into the night. Their passion and dedication were very inspiring.
AK: One of the most memorable experiences was when we were migrating our processing centre to TranzWare Online – the first product I developed at Compass Plus. It took a few days to complete, I remember not leaving the office for at least 48 hours. It was a very intense and hands-on experience, but also extremely rewarding in the end.
DV: My memory often goes back in time when the company first started out and the whole team was very young, hungry for work and enthusiastic about every challenge. Also, as we were a small team, everyone treated each other like family, and we would often go to picnics together and do other things outside of office. Our first experiences exhibiting at industry events were also very memorable. It was very different and new: we organised everything ourselves from scratch, set up demo ATMs in the middle of the exhibition hall, remotely connected to our processing centre, etc.
What is the biggest change you’ve seen in your time with the company?
EK: We’ve grown significantly and gained a lot of respect in the payments industry. Nevertheless, we have kept the team spirit and managed to put efficient business processes in place that will ensure our future growth.
DV: The company has grown so much since I’ve been here and it is definitely the biggest change I’ve seen. We started from one local card project and have grown internationally with two processing centres now in operation. But the changes in the Company are not just about the size and quantity: our area of interest and expertise has expanded too. Another milestone was reached when we started using our own software for processing – basically becoming a software vendor rather than a processor only.
What are you looking forward to in the company’s future?
AK: I am excited for future projects and working with new customers. I hope the company keeps expanding its product portfolio and continues providing the highest level of service to its customers.
DV: I expect the company to continue expanding its areas of expertise and search for new innovative ideas and services to develop. I think Compass Plus has not reached its peak yet and we have a lot more to show the industry. A lot of young enthusiastic professionals have joined us, and I believe we have all the means to stay highly competitive and relevant to the market. Compass Plus has a bright future ahead.