Meet Haitao — Rocket Growth Engineering
Coupang's developers exponentially improve customer experience and pursue world class engineering excellence, regardless of their backgrounds and where they are.
Coupang Rocket Growth is now building its global team to improve customer’s experience with advanced Rocket Delivery service.
Introducing Haitao, who is building a scalable service and building the new Rocket Growth service.
Hi Haitao, Thank you for agreeing to have an interview. Please tell us about yourself.
My name is Haitao. I completed my undergraduate study in China and came to US for the post graduate study in electrical and computer engineering as well as computer science. Now I am US citizen and have been working in the software industry for more than twenty years ranging from embedded and mobile systems, consumer, and enterprise applications to e-commerce system development recently.
Please describe your overall career path. How did you join Coupang?
I started as an embedded software engineer for a few years working on various firmware and driver development after I got my master’s degree in computer science. Then I joined a big global tech company and have worked there for more than twelve years and contributed to various product lines from embedded and mobile system (CE/Windows Phone) to real-time communication (Lync/Skype/Teams). Over my tenure, I have been a development manager, tech lead as well as individual contributor.
About five years or so, I was offered a great opportunity at Coupang to revamp seller listing and order fulfillment systems. I have also led teams to develop travel connect and advertising pre-ranking system. Early 2020, I led the team to develop Rocket Growth systems with only six engineers and launched the business on time. Rocket Growth is a crucial part of Coupang business and is critical to Coupang’s long-term success.
Please introduce Rocket Growth service.
The success of any e-commerce product depends on three main pillars. 1) High quality selection, 2) Best price 3) Convenience. Rocket Growth is a unique service that targets these 3 pillars as we provide high quality selection at the best price with the speed of same day delivery to our customers. We do demand and capacity planning, provide enough days of coverage for in-demand items, and customers get the best selection with the best price, and with the convenience of the same day delivery.
Could you elaborate more about your work?
My daily work routine includes collaborations with Rocket Growth and business leaders to define the roadmap, aligning priorities and development resources with partner engineering teams, facilitating and adjust resources within the team to ensure the on-time delivery of high priority projects, promoting and enforcing operation and engineering excellence processes with Rocket Growth engineering teams, hiring and developing engineers and managers to the best they could be.
Coupang wants to build a world class, high performing and self-sustaining engineering organization to deliver systems supporting fast moving business. We want our organization to become a place where people can learn, share, innovate, execute and eventually grow to their full potential.
Then could you introduce the teams for those who want to apply?
Right now, Rocket Growth engineering teams are only based in Seattle. However, as business grows rapidly, we would like to build new teams in Seoul. Rocket Growth engineering teams have a very diversified background. Our engineers include experienced veterans not only from big companies like Google, Amazon, Meta, Microsoft and other well-known companies here in Seattle and the US, but also new college graduates as well. They work with their peers within the team, collaborating with product manager, program manager and engineers from sister teams to develop the features and systems to scale up the business. They also actively participate in various brainstorming sessions and planning meetings to improve customer experience with new features and enhancements of existing systems and processes. They take operations seriously and address customer issues and live incidents in real time.
As the Rocket Growth business continues to scale, we need to invent new features, introduce new processes, automate manual steps, use machine learning based decision making and keep innovating in areas such as selection sourcing, product listing, inbound and reverse logistics, inventory management and fulfillment center space optimization and more. You will find countless opportunities to contribute, learn and grow not only technically, but also leadership skills.
What is the engineering team’s organization culture?
Coupang’s fifteen leadership principles are Rocket Growth organization’s culture. We promote and practice those principles across our activities. Company-wide perspective, move with urgency, ruthlessly prioritization and demand excellence are a few key principles we focus on within the organization.
Also, the biggest advantage of Rocket Growth is its diversity. Like I said previously, our engineers have a variety of backgrounds from well-known companies and universities here in Seattle and the US. New team members will greatly benefit from the team’s background in terms of technical experience, culture and the best practices they bring to the team.
All systems are unique for Coupang as this is a new business model. We have built most of our systems from scratch. However, we do hate waste and leverage existing infrastructure and system components as much as we can.
Now Rocket Growth is building the team in Korea. What will they experience?
The team in Seoul will be closely partnering with engineers in Seattle as we are one Rocket Growth engineering organization. Seattle teams have regular tech salon series where engineers share their learning from the work, new technologies being used and open-source community and the best design and operation practices. This is one example of the team promoting operation and engineering excellence and making Rocket Growth a fun place to work.
What qualifications are you looking for in a future member of your organization?
Coupang is striving to build a world in which customers ask, “How did I ever live without Coupang?”. We are looking for people who are passionate about this mission and are self-motivated to take on the challenges to achieve it.
If you are interested in Rocket Growth, apply now.