GTC Alumni Series – MathWorks

MathWorks is a leading developer of mathematical computing software. They provide millions of engineers and scientists around the world with modelling and simulation software used in a variety of industries to develop breakthroughs that transform the way we live, learn, and work. MathWorks employs 4,000 people serving customers in over 180 countries.

Richard Haxby, the Managing Director for the Irish operation who set up the Galway office in 2016, shares his experience of setting up in Galway.

We are a manufacturer of software for cutting-edge engineering all over the world. We have two principal products: MATLAB and Simulink. MATLAB for big data, machine learning and production analytics. And Simulink for the design of smart, complex systems used in applications such as autonomous driving and robotics. We also produce nearly 100 additional products for specialised tasks such as data analysis, image processing, and computer vision.

Galway as a Strategic Destination

Setting up in Galway was a strategic decision. We have a worldwide reputation and are highly regarded by our employees and customers. We have an incredibly diverse customer base and we looked to Ireland for an operation to evolve how we support our European community of customers.

When we were choosing a location we were thinking about the skills required to deal with a range of customer support requirements. We were looking for people with IT skills and languages; people who understood sales, marketing, science and engineering.

MathWorks has always positioned its offices in close proximity to universities. Access to talented, educated individuals is really important to us. People are the lifeblood of any company.

Galway has provided us with the technical, cultural and linguistic skills that we require to serve a European customer base. We have been able to source experienced talent and graduates from within the local market and we are able to attract international talent because we are here. It really has proved to be a very strong location for us in attracting the right people with a range of skills and languages.

Galway has given us an advantage in a competitive talent market.

Start Fast From Nothing

It is a really good time to be in Galway. The city is working hard to ensure that tech companies have the right facilities and the right infrastructure. There are strong links between government agencies and the technology hubs; all supported by a vibrant community of high calibre leaders.

We needed to find somewhere quick with the right facilities for us. We needed a base to establish a presence in Ireland and invite people through for interviews. GTC became that launchpad for us. All of the infrastructure we needed to function was ready and available.

We were able to establish ourselves very, very quickly. From Galway, MathWorks Ireland became an entity in just a few weeks. We really could start fast from nothing.

Cultural Alignment

The culture at MathWorks is very inclusive. Our guiding principle is “Do the Right Thing.” This means doing what is best for our staff, customers, business partners, and communities for the long term, and believing that “right” answers exist. It also means measuring our success, not merely in financial terms, but by how consistently we act according to this principle. Our mission and core values express what “doing the right thing” means in our day-to-day work.

We take our core values very seriously, and we also place an importance on having fun! Our staff should enjoy their work, be stimulated and challenged. We understand that we are all more productive when we are happy!

MathWorks invests in maintaining a positive work culture and social activities. But beyond that our staff need to have a healthy and prosperous personal life.

A Small City with a Big Heart

Galway is a city that not only supports our cultural values, but gives our staff the opportunity to build a great life outside of work. I am new to Galway myself and what I have discovered since I have been here is that there are so many things to do in Galway. There is great food, beautiful countryside and creative entertainment – it feels like there is festival every week!

That is all very important because we are not just hiring people from within Ireland but also from within the many European countries that we support. We have people who have come from France, Germany, Finland and Italy. When they come they want to feel like they can build a life. Being located in a city like Galway is particularly beneficial when you are building a team as they can settle very quickly.

A Place to Build a Career and a Life

We started with a number of functions that serve our European markets. We are also adding new functions and have recently added a team of Customer Success Specialists – a new activity focused quite simply on the success of our customers, realizing the value of the investment they make in our products.

As we keep seeing different ways to support our customers we will identify new roles that will create new opportunities for our team here. We went from 0 – 42 people in just over a year. This year we will add at least another 20 staff to the team and probably the year after that another 40.

We believe our operation here will thrive as our team expands and builds their own lives here in Galway.