Fitted’s Director of Engineering, Justin Podzimek, shares about his professional journey, career successes, and all things Fitted! Podzimek led Fitted Payments and was impressively able to create and launch this technology in a record amount of time. We are so grateful to have such a rockstar on our team – paving the way to revolutionize retail.
Do you have any significant career successes you’d like to share prior to working at Fitted?
“Before Fitted I worked at a company called MaxOne that attempted to do machine learning for youth sports athletes. My team and I developed an application that would record an athlete’s free throw and then provide a critique, along with suggested tips and drills to improve that athlete’s form. I experimented with machine learning for the first time at MaxOne, starting at the lowest position, I was able to teach myself and climb the career ladder. Eventually, I was promoted to Director of Engineering. A lot of my career is self-taught, I went to college, but it was for multimedia, therefore I consider the entirety of my career to be a success because I taught myself everything I know.”
What made you want to work at Fitted?
“When I first learned about Fitted, I loved the idea of helping small businesses thrive. I enjoyed changing how people think about making purchases and was excited to be a part of the movement. Especially these past few years through the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve seen so many small businesses that were trying to get up off the ground, but not being able to make it. Fitted is powerful because it’s about the collective- everyone coming together to help each other succeed. I think Fitted is making the world a better place.”
What was the most exciting part of leading and launching Fitted Payments?
“The beauty is that what the retailer and customer see is just the tip of the iceberg. Payments are by far the most architecturally advanced project that I’ve worked on and being surrounded by such a talented, committed team has been crucial. We all bounce ideas off each other with the goal in mind of creating a best-in-class product and experience for our customers.”
What was the most challenging part of getting Payments ready to launch?
“The advanced way that we’re handling adjustments (brand discounts, terms) and how those get spread across the individual line items was a thrilling challenge because it is so individualized, depending on each retailer to brand connection.”
How do you see Payments revolutionizing the retail industry?
“Being able to order from a network of other Fitted retailers or directly from a brand is revolutionary in itself. Up until now when a retailer wanted to purchase from a specific brand, they had to log into the brand’s individual B2B to make an order on a per customer basis. Fitted has made it so easy to be able to make a single order across multiple brands (while still taking into account each retailer’s individual brand discounts!). We’re also starting to get more into the shipping space so that retailers can manage their orders at a very high level.”
What do you see coming next down the pipeline for Fitted?
“We have big plans for integrating more machine learning that way we can make purchase recommendations for retailers- i.e. when to purchase inventory based on the existing market trends, and year-over-year trends. We will be able to predict supply surpluses and shortages to make better-informed recommendations.”
What is your favorite team memory?
“Prior to Fitted, my work experience was that the engineers put in the long hours to get something delivered, then the following morning, everyone else would see the final results. Fitted is vastly different in that regard. Monte, Glen, and Andrew were in the majority of War Rooms (*War Room: A place for everyone to congregate to knock out a problem and prepare for a large deployment) with us late into the night with Payments. The team would work until 2:00 am some nights to make sure that everything was running smoothly. Having leadership care that much about the team and the product has been amazing. As Payments was rolled out, I’ll never forget the feeling of euphoria throughout the office.”
What animal best resembles your energy?
“A hermit crab – software engineers are typically more introverted. I enjoy being able to put my head down and get work done. A hermit crab has his own little home (shell) that he can upgrade or leave whenever he needs to. Very relatable for me!”
What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
“Spending time with my family is very important to me. My fiancé is currently deployed overseas so wrangling the kids is a bit of an adventure right now, but our family enjoys spending time out in nature, going camping, or to the lake. We try to be active and have fun together. Outside of spending time with my family, I am a woodworker. I build things like furniture and boxes. Being an engineer, I am always problem-solving, which is why I enjoy woodworking because it allows me to tap into my creative side.”