Eli, Product Designer

2nd Mar 22 2:17 pm by Harry Patte-Dobbs

Here at Kybotech, we’re always on the lookout for new talent – for people and personalities that gel with our company ideals and are hungry for success. So to understand what life at Kybotech is like, we think there’s no better way than to talk to some of the real people who work there.

Check out their answers below to see if Kybotech is the right fit for you!

Hey Eli, let’s start with – which brand do you (primarily) work on?

I mainly work on Garden Buildings Direct.

What department do you work in/what’s your role?

I work in the design department as a product designer. So I design any and all new wooden buildings for the BillyOh/Garden Buildings Direct brand.

Cool, and how long have you worked at Kybotech?

It’s been 2 Years, 4 months now.

A Day In Eli’s Work Life

So what does “a day in Eli’s life” look like?

So I regularly carry out product research – whether that’s checking existing products or looking for ideas on places like Instagram and Pinterest. 

From there, I start 3D modelling of multiple ideas, communicating with the factory to ensure that products are efficient to produce and answering any questions about new or existing products from the sales, marketing, and care teams. 

I also plan for physical prototypes to test manufacturability, and to test products from the customer’s perspective.

“In the space of about 2 weeks, I managed to take a product from early design up to being on sale”.

Eli

Wow – and what gets you out of bed and to work in the morning to do all of that?

I’d say the exciting prospect of being able to design something entirely new. Being able to communicate with the factory directly also means there’s really no limit to what sort of wooden buildings we could make, so every project brings new and exciting things to design (as well as new challenges!).

How have you found working remotely during the past 1-2 years?

Yeah, I’ve really enjoyed it actually. I’m able to start the day far more relaxed and focused (I had a very long commute prior to WFH!). I can also make the space my own to really maximise productivity with everything I need on hand.

“This last year’s been so collaborative, I’ve been able to work with so many great people all over the company”.

Eli

Eli’s Very Own Designs

Nice, and what’s one proud moment you’ve had whilst working here?

Creating our Nightjar Garden Bar has to be a high point. It was only a small product, but it came when morale was quite low – everyone had just started WFH and missing the office environment was starting to get us all a bit down! 

But in the space of about 2 weeks, I managed to take a product from early design up to being on sale. Since then it’s gone on to sell over 1000 units! So even though it’s small it has to be one of my proudest achievements.

BillyOh Nightjar garden bar
Eli designed the beautiful Nightjar Garden Bar

That’s awesome, and what’s on your list to achieve over the next year?

Honestly, we’ve got so many new products planned for this year, it’s hard to pick which one I’m looking forward to the most! But my overall goal is mainly just to surpass myself every year – for this year’s new products to outsell last year – that would be my goal.

And have you seen the company change since you’ve been working here?

Definitely! At first work from home was quite daunting, but I think everyone adapted so quickly, especially in the ways we all communicated. It’s so good I honestly don’t think I would go back. 

This last year’s been so collaborative, I’ve been able to work with so many great people all over the company. And as the company grows, the more people there are to work with. It’s been great to be able to get specific help from someone dedicated to each job role.

“It helps everything to run so much more efficiently having a great team that never have any problem working together or just helping each other out”.

Eli

What useful skills have you learned whilst working here?

A far greater understanding of design for manufacture and being able to work directly with the factory has been such a great opportunity. I’d say every product designer should work like this at least once

Being able to be involved with your own designs as they go to manufacture and learning to adapt quickly to any potential problems – to think on your feet – is such a great learning opportunity.

On the flip side, can you remember a memorable facepalm moment at work? (It’s ok we’ve all had them!) And how did you grow from this?

Honestly, every product that wasn’t the last one! With every new product, I learn something new, some knowledge or understanding that would have been so helpful 6 months or a year ago 😂. 

I look back at some of my earliest products and can’t help about how much quicker or more efficiently I’d be if I could do it all over again.

laptop hands working
Credit: Lukasbieri / Pixabay

Why Kybotech?

Well, it’s all about growth Eli! So why did you decide to apply to Kybotech in the first place?

I’ve always loved to work with my hands – anything DIY has always interested me. So when I saw I could design wooden products like sheds and summerhouses, it immediately piqued my interest. 

I think I must have designed at least 4 sheds before I started just to put in my portfolio because I wanted the role so much! When I visited the offices and site it was great to meet such a tight-knit team – everyone was happy to work together. That collaboration was another big draw.

And what’s the best thing about working at Kybotech? Is the company working on improving anything that doesn’t work so well?

That same collaboration I saw when I came to interview – well, even working from home hasn’t changed that. There are so many people here, with so much knowledge whether they’re new or old to the company. 

Whatever I’m working on I can email someone in the factory to make sure a new product can be made efficiently. I can call up the care team to get customer feedback on our existing products. I can speak to the marketing team if they’ve seen some exciting new products on social media. 

And I think it helps everything to run so much more efficiently having a great team that never have any problem working together or just helping each other out.

How would you describe life at Kybotech in 5 words or less?

Every day’s a new lesson!

Any advice for potential candidates?

I’d say always do your research, it’s great to see someone come into an interview with any prior knowledge, even if it’s just from 5 minutes of Googling before the interview. 

Seeing someone show up who takes initiative, is naturally curious, and genuinely wants to understand their work – that’s a big part of a successful candidate for me.

Thanks for your time – and if you want to follow in their footsteps, click to apply here.