Soccer team in a huddle

Of Bits and Bikes

February 25, 2016 by Paul Baur 26

When the intensity of Silicon Valley gets to be too much for Yoram Hod and he needs a fresh perspective, he dons his leather gear, mounts his bike, and heads for the hills.

One of Yoram’s favorite bike routes is Skyline Boulevard, which meanders through fields and forest on a ridge between the Valley and the Pacific Ocean. On a clear day, you can see from San Francisco to San Jose – and well beyond. Anyone who rushes from A to B on this road – where salty ocean air meets the pine-scented mountain air – has completely missed the point.

Yoram lets the scenery roll over him, and reflects on his work and life in the fast lane. Married with four children, Yoram is a product manager for the cloud development tools from SAP. It’s a responsibility he doesn’t take lightly: these are the tools that help software developers at thousands of companies worldwide create a better user experience for the next generation of cloud solutions – which in turn will probably touch billions of users.

Since Yoram is the bridge between SAP’s customers and the development team that writes the code, he has to understand and connect both worlds. The unrelenting transition of enterprise software from on-premise to the cloud has shifted customers’ expectations into a higher gear. “It can get pretty intense at times,” says Yoram, explaining, “I need to keep up with rapid changes in the market and maintain constant contact with customers and partners.”

 A Dream Job

Fortunately for Yoram – as a former software architect – coding remains one of his big passions. His skills allow him to test the product he manages on a daily basis, and even create sample code and demos for users. Colleagues at SAP’s development center in Ra’anana, Israel communicate with him daily to ensure that they are on the same page with respect to the rollout of new features and releases. It’s a dream job for Yoram that has opened up many possibilities for him professionally and personally.

Yoram bought his first motorcycle when he lived in Israel in order to reduce commuting times, and now he uses his bike to reach SAP’s offices in Palo Alto where he has worked since 2010. In 2013, Yoram fulfilled a dream of many bikers by riding coast to coast on US50, which stretches just over 3,000 miles and 12 states from California to Maryland. It took him nine days, from sunrise to sunset every day, accompanied only by trance music in his helmet. “It was amazing. Everyone should take the time for themselves to do it because it puts everything in perspective.”

Yoram combined his passions for bits and bikes to program a website that enabled his family and friends to track every mile of his journey, sharing pictures and comments. At the time, SAP HANA wasn’t quite mature enough to build the application. But his next goal is Alaska, and Yoram promises to build his application on SAP HANA Cloud Platform.

The People Behind the Technology

//name: Yoram Hod
//job title: Product Manager, Development Tools
//team: Cloud Development Experience
//years at SAP: 12
//SAP lab: Silicon Valley
//passion: Programming, motorcycles

Read more stories of the People Behind the Technology.

Video: Natalie Hauck and Alex Januschke, SAP Development University

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