Talk to Sales


Kounta People Spotlight: Jamie Hill

There’s something like a billion people on Facebook and all of us, at one time or another, has received a …

By Dave Eagle

There’s something like a billion people on Facebook and all of us, at one time or another, has received a Farmville (or Frontierville, or Petville, or Mafia Wars) request from one of our friends. We all gripe about it—those notifications that leave you feeling like you just got a pair of socks for Christmas. But what you might see as a minor annoyance is also nothing short of a technological coup d’etat. I’ve got a background in technology myself, and I can tell you that it’s a rare thing indeed to hear people complain about software when it’s working exactly the way it was designed to. Behind everyone of those plots of virtual farmland is a fault-tolerant hardware infrastructure that spans thousands of servers, in multiple data centers across a continent or two. And all that is the result of the work of a team of coders and engineers effecting some serious high-tech wizardry in the name of amusement. And—despite what the Dilbert Principle would have you believe—when it comes to tech, these teams can’t succeed under shoddy leadership. So, for any of you out there who wanted to wring the neck of a friend who kept pestering you with any of the various _____ville gift requests you’ve gotten over the years, I can give you the name of at least one of those managers who made it all happen: Jamie Hill.

But, before you look him up on LinkedIn and send angry letters, bear something in mind. Jamie is the former CTO of the Frontierville game studio at Zynga, where he also had a hand in developing the architecture, operations, and systems that were behind many of the company’s social apps. Nowadays, Jamie has moved beyond helping customers build thriving virtual frontier towns and taken his skills to Kounta, where he helps customers build thriving actual businesses with much more sophisticated software. Technically, Jamie Hill is the guy who’s ultimately responsible for making Kounta go. I don’t use the word “technically” here as a way to semantically belittle what he does: it’s in his job title. Jamie left his post at Zynga to become our CTO and, armed with a massive skillset, is the proverbial “here”—that place where the buck stops—when it comes to Kounta’s technology strategy.  What exactly does that mean, you ask? If you’ve ever read up on the benefits of cloud computing, you’re probably familiar with the part where everyone tells you that you get to offload all the computing headaches—purchasing hardware and software, maintaining and upgrading it, backing it all up—to whoever is hosting your apps and infrastructure. In the case of Kounta, it’s Jamie and his team that you’ve delegated those tasks to. Thanks, Jamie and team!

Lightning Round: Hometown: Sydney Favorite Pizza Topping: bacon - everything tastes better with bacon. Star Trek or Star Wars? Star Wars Aristotle or Socrates? Aristotle Pick a number between 1 and 5,000: 1337 Describe yourself in one word: Chilled
Lightning Round
Hometown: Sydney
Favorite Pizza Topping: Bacon – everything tastes better with bacon.
Star Trek or Star Wars? Star Wars
Aristotle or Socrates? Aristotle
Pick a number between 1 and 5,000: 1337
Describe yourself in one word: Chilled

Of course, Kounta being a small company means that Jamie isn’t some C-level executive gazing down from his ivory tower. Multitasking is par for the course here, and he’s got the processing power to make that happen without any latency (a little tech wordplay for you all). This means that Jamie’s getting involved in almost all areas of the business related to the software itself. There’s the training of new employees, to make sure they’re up to speed on all that Kounta can do and what’s running behind the scenes to make it all work. He works closely with the product team to create a feature roadmap for upcoming releases, and then manages the progress of those features. He spends time with the support team as a way of staying connected to customers and understanding what issues they’ve been dealing with; this serves to inform the feature roadmap as well as to know what existing ones could be improved. And on the rare occasion that Kounta’s crack support team can’t solve a problem, the tickets get escalated to the man himself to work through it. Finally, Jamie also works closely with other developers who are creating add-ons to integrate with Kounta, acting as a kind of API ambassador and providing guidance to them when necessary.

In preparing for writing this post, I asked Jamie an earnest question in a tongue-in-cheek sort of way: What nightmare scenario would befall Kounta if you were to quit your job there today? Speaking with the humility of a Buddhist monk, he declined to acknowledge that things would go bad just because he left. But we know that Jamie’s overseeing various aspects of our infrastructure—from the servers to the software itself—and it’s all running like a well-oiled machine.


@kountapos #poweredbykounta

Instagram post 17946602815306861 Here’s a Halloween treat: Dark Mode on your POS, coming soon...
Instagram post 17857601899559130 So, you’ve decided to open, or already have a restaurant - Go you!  As the options for diners continue to increase and the bar is set higher and higher, it’s the little details that set businesses apart.  A thoughtful, beautifully designed menu is integral to today’s dining experience and something customers absolutely expect from a modern venue.  Your menu is a chance to show your customers who you are – your ethos as a brand, your taste and your flair, without saying a word. It’s one of the first impressions people will have of your venue, so it’s important that you really nail it and make it part of your brand story.  Head to the link in our bio for our 5 menu design tips to suit your style, and our simple PDF template you can help yourself to if you like.
Instagram post 17852912437277041 The OzHarvest Café reached over $10,000 raised over the weekend! Thank you to everyone who has come in for lunch or a coffee so far and to our partner kountapos who are using data from their point of sale system to help reduce food waste.
Instagram post 18057600388170474 The Awards season in hospitality often sparks a sense of inspiration for many.  For some it might inspire them to work more closely with local farmers and producers, others might be left rethinking their brand, and for many, it might fuel a desire to open a restaurant of their own.  But desire and inspiration alone won’t create reality.  Restaurants are a dynamic and broad collective of businesses; from Quick-Service style to Fine Dining, encompassing ethnic foods like Indian, Thai or Mexican, featuring Burger Joints and Vegan businesses, they are the ultimate vehicle to express your Food and Beverage concept and can offer a very good return on invested capital.  So why wouldn’t you?  Well, whilst opening a Restaurant is an incredibly exciting adventure, it’s also deeply complex in equal parts.  With an imposing financial investment and the high risk of hospitality’s most competitive segment, opening a restaurant deserves careful consideration and deliberate, thorough planning to ensure success.  We’ve broken down the three key areas to focus on, and rounded up the best resources to help create your next reality.  Link in Bio.