Scaling Challenges

After working at two smaller companies, I’ve moved on. This week I have started working for ASML, and, as a result, the total number of colleagues I now have has bumped up from around 50 to more than 6000. Yes, that means my professional working environment has radically changed, well, at least if you look at the numbers.

On Monday, my first day in Veldhoven, and yesterday we started with a lot of introduction and education about the company’s core business. We haven’t even touched the surface of the actual software engineering that’s going on, but I know we will get there soon. However, I couldn’t keep myself from wondering about the challenges I will be facing.

Most of all, what is intriguing me is the question whether the challenges and problems, but also the things that do go smoothly scale or not. What I mean by scale is whether some problem will have a much bigger impact in a large company than that same problem in a smaller company. The same for smoothing something out; does that have a bigger impact in a bigger company too? On the other hand, maybe larger companies are simply facing completely different challenges than smaller ones. I can’t say from experience, because I never worked at large high-tech businesses (with 1000+ employees). But I do have the feeling that it is not much different: possibly challenges don’t scale. And size doesn’t matter

I might be able to answer these questions in the coming weeks, months or years, but one thing is for sure, I’m up for interesting times.