Brain drain: Key datacentre/infrastructure engineer leaves the ‘bay

January 10, 2008

I heard through the grapevine today that one of the elite engineers at eBay (he was a 8yr veteran and eBay Fellow, which is a big honour there) has departed.  I dug into it and found this press release from Rearden commerce.  Here’s the blurb:

In his role as VP, Network Operations, Paul Kilmartin is responsible for managing the company’s technology infrastructure and IT operations. Kilmartin’s background includes more than 20 years of experience in information technology management. He joined Rearden Commerce after eight years with eBay, where he managed several different operational teams for both eBay and PayPal, including Systems Administration, Database Administration, Capacity Planning, Data centre Management and Infrastructure Architecture.Kilmartin was named eBay Fellow in 2004, for his leadership in the areas of scalability and availability design and procedure.

I’m sure there are tons of smart people still thinking about scalability at eBay, but these kind of high profile brain drains make me nervous.

As we enter 08, we’re hearing messaging around low listing fees (which means LOTS more listings are coming) plus Finding 2.0, both of these will put incredible strain on the eBay system and we (everyone in the ecosystem) need these initiatives to work flawlessly.  Come back Paul!!!!