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Say Hello To: Tony Schollum

Olivia Sutcliffe 18 January 2020

We sat down with Tony Schollum, Senior Developer and Team Lead at Re-Leased, to chat about family, his professional background and his proudest moments at Re-Leased.

 

Hi, Tony – tell us a bit about yourself.

I’ve got a son who’s just over 3 and a half years old and I spend most of my time out of work with him. He likes sports as do I, so we enjoy going on bike rides together, or playing a game of soccer or basketball.

I love spending my time mountain biking and surfing. When I am not participating in sports I am landscaping for our brand new house that has been built in Hawkes Bay.

 

When did you join Re-Leased and what does a typical day look like for you?

Before joining Re-Leased I was a COO and development team leader for an e-commerce business that built a platform for fashion brands.

A normal day for me here at Re-Leased includes doing a reasonable amount of development work focused on infrastructure and scalability, but the majority of my time is coaching and upskilling the team here – my big focus is getting the team ready for scale.

 

What do you like about your role?

Re-Leased is a SaaS product, which means you can spend a lot of time on doing things right, as opposed to, say, a service-based business where you’re limited to hours and therefore the quality takes a hit. We do things properly here at Re-Leased. 

I don’t mind what I do as long as it’s a challenge. I’m just as happy solving a technical issue as I am interacting with team members on other projects.

 

What has been your most memorable moment at Re-Leased?

One of the most memorable moments is getting Re-Leased to a one-week release cycle (weekly updates to our software), which to a lot of people doesn’t sound important or great, but when I first joined Re-Leased, in the first 6 months we only did two production releases. We have arrived at the 1-week release cycle within my first year and I’m really proud of that. 

It’s also been really cool going to awards ceremonies and taking home awards for our product. It makes you take a step back and realise how we’re making an impact. 

 

Share your thoughts on how your role is changing and how you need to operate to be the best leader you can be today.

The people who make good managers never get given the role of team lead, they just become the lead – in other words, they recognise the gap, and then they start to fill it. That’s a trait I look for in developers. 

You’re going to be successful if you’re into what you do and you are constantly upskilling in your own time. Another big one for me is to listen to people and understand what they’re saying. You have always got to dig in and ask why. It’s important to use influence and be a coach when working with highly intelligent people, rather than just to bark orders. That style of management and leadership doesn’t work anymore.

 

Tell us about your thoughts on what we’re doing for the CRE market, and talk a little bit about the cloud vs. server debate.

These days if you are going to swap management software at any level, you need to go to a SaaS product that’s based in the cloud – it’s nuts not to. There are all sorts of reasons for it – anything that is desktop-based is automatically slower to get improvements. 

With software that is cloud-based, there are already other platforms and technology out there in the marketplace that you can plug straight into. So, for example, all of your investment in our product is directly making property management better. It’s literally focused on making property management better. 

And then you have to look at who’s disrupting in the industry, which generally means that a product has a certain amount of feature coverage that the market requires. Re-Leased is doing that for the property management industry. 

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