27 May 2021
This month we introduce you to Kendel Ruppert, Demand Generation Manager at iProov. We’re big believers in developing talent and promoting internally here at iProov and Kendel’s journey is a perfect example of that in practice. Here she tells us about her career so far and what it’s like to work here.
So Kendel, what were your first impressions of iProov?
I joined iProov as an intern when we were a very small team based in our old office, so my first impression was “wow, there’s a lot of people crammed into this very small space!”. I was one of the first commercial hires so I was surrounded by a sea of technology geniuses talking about things I didn’t understand. It could have been quite an intimidating situation, but it wasn’t at all – the iProov culture has always been very accepting. One of my main memories of that first day was that Andrew, our CEO, knew my name. That continues to this day: the CEO takes an interest in who you are and what you’re working on.
How has iProov changed since you’ve been here?
First, we have a lot more people, which is really cool. We are very diverse – there are more women in the business and we have people from different ethnicities, countries and backgrounds. It’s refreshing to have such a diverse culture at iProov – everyone is unique and that uniqueness is seen as a good thing. It’s understood that different perspectives bring a lot of value. I really love that.
The second big change has been the office. It’s almost folklore at iProov: The phrase “you should have seen the old office…” is heard by every new starter. It wasn’t a very inspiring building. I used to wonder how the team managed to remain so positive, so inspired and so motivated in a not-so-inspiring place but we still managed to have customer meetings in that office and win customer contracts. That’s a true testament to the team and the spirit of iProov that a ramshackle building couldn’t hold us back.
Ah yes, the old office. What was wrong with it?
Our Head of Biometric Platform, Gemma, used to have a bucket next to her desk to catch rainwater that would leak through the ceiling. The number of times I’d arrive at work out of breath because I’d had to run up eight flights of stairs when the lifts were broken again. One of the funniest stories is our Sales Director, Alex; in his first interview, a piece of ceiling crumbled and fell on his head – and he still joined iProov! That’s a testament to how cool the technology is and the strength of the company culture. I look back nostalgically now but I’m definitely glad we have working lifts and water-proof ceilings.
What’s it like working in iProov HQ now?
It’s a lovely place to work. I remember our first day – we were walking around in absolute awe. I love seeing people come into the London office for the first time. We have great views of the South Bank, the Shard and Canary Wharf on one side and then the London Eye and Houses of Parliament on the other. There’s yoga and free coffee and beer and all sorts of other perks but it’s the atmosphere that I love the most. The background noise of people solving complex problems, the hustle and bustle of the working day, seeing equations on the meeting room whiteboards – I’ve missed all of that during the pandemic.
How has your role changed since you started at iProov?
I joined straight out of university as a graduate. I joined the marketing function and was exposed to a wide range of activities. It was slightly overwhelming because at the time I was the only hire dedicated solely to marketing. However, it meant I got exposed to everything very quickly and I learned a lot faster than other graduates in the early stages of their careers. As the company grew, I joined the Demand Generation function – again, it was new and a bit daunting but also very exciting. iProov has continually given me the opportunity to learn and develop myself while making a real contribution to the company’s progress.
What is your favourite thing about your role now?
I loved the events and the travel that I got to do before the pandemic. Right before COVID hit, I was in Berlin and then San Francisco before the rest of the year’s events were cancelled. Traveling to different countries and talking to people about iProov has put our potential into perspective for me – there’s a huge interest in our mission and what we’re doing. It also shows how quickly your career can grow at iProov – I was able to prove myself and be managing events around the world at the age of 22. I’m not sure I would have had that opportunity in other companies.
What are you most looking forward to when we can return back to the office?
Being in the office together makes it much easier to appreciate that you’re part of something big; way bigger than either you or your team. There’s a sense of togetherness at iProov and it’s really cool to see that happening in real-time, with iProovers gathering together to solve a problem that’s affecting millions of people somewhere on the other side of the world. Everyone doing that from their homes is still cool, but it’s not the same. I’m looking forward to getting back to the office and seeing things happen.
Finally, how would you summarize your time at iProov?
I feel like I’ve already had so many career-defining moments in a very short space of time! For me, it’s been an amazing experience and a privilege watching incredibly intelligent people build something from the ground up. It’s like a well-oiled iProov machine and you get to see ideas moving from inception to fully-fledged solutions and business opportunities. I imagine that this is how the first 20 people at Microsoft or Google felt and I am just really proud to be part of the iProov story.
If you feel inspired by Kendel’s iProov journey and interested in joining the iProov team – check out our current vacancies. Follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter to keep updated with new openings – we are always looking for new talent.
And meet more of the iProov team below!