Richard Dam, Developer in Ho Chi Minh City, Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam
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Richard Dam

Verified Expert  in Engineering

APIs Developer

Ho Chi Minh City, Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam
Toptal Member Since
July 10, 2019

Richard is a seasoned product engineer with over a decade of experience building innovative products in the AI/ML, payment, and eCommerce fields. He's an experienced team leader, driving 10x growth for a startup's AI Chatbot and successfully heading the engineering team of GO VIET. As the CTO of a fintech company he co-founded, Richard's passion for product engineering and driving results make him an invaluable asset to any tech team.


Early Stage Startup
Python, APIs, Azure, Flask, Google Cloud, OpenAI GPT-3 API
Freelance Client
Python, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Azure, Kubernetes, ChatGPT, OpenAI GPT-3 API...
Polymer Solutions, Inc
Python, AWS Lambda, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Data Loss Prevention (DLP)...




Preferred Environment

Docker, Git, Sublime Text, PyCharm, Zsh, MacOS

The most amazing...

...product I've built is a recommendation engine for a social network, offering users with personalized experience in their activity feeds.

Work Experience

Python Developer

2023 - 2023
Early Stage Startup
  • Experimented and applied pre-trained AI models for news article summarization.
  • Optimized an app by applying OpenAI for certain NLP tasks, including text similarity, summarization, and script generation.
  • Refactored the Flask app, modularized different logic components, and created Docker and deployment scripts.
Technologies: Python, APIs, Azure, Flask, Google Cloud, OpenAI GPT-3 API

Engineering Manager

2021 - 2023
Freelance Client
  • Designed, architected, and implemented a multi-tenant chatbot platform optimized for the education industry.
  • Created an identity management system that enables single sign-on for all the portals in the system and federated identity for the clients.
  • Created integrations with multiple LMS using LTI v1.1 and LTI v1.3.
  • Built a Microsoft Teams app to make the chatbot available on the Teams personal and group chats.
  • Built CI/CD pipelines, and automated infrastructure provisioning using IaC.
Technologies: Python, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Azure, Kubernetes, ChatGPT, OpenAI GPT-3 API, GitHub, Flask, REST APIs, SAML, Single Sign-on (SSO), OAuth 2, OpenID Connect (OIDC), Auth0, Back-end, Terraform, Microservices

Software Engineer

2021 - 2021
Polymer Solutions, Inc
  • Optimized processing time of lambda apps around 20-30%.
  • Restructured the app's service layer to make it compatible with Lambda, API, and CLI.
  • Set up CI/CD pipelines on Bitbucket and provisioned the app on AWS using Terraform.
Technologies: Python, AWS Lambda, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Data Loss Prevention (DLP), Terraform, Personally Identifiable Information (PII), GitHub, Back-end


2019 - 2020
GAPO Technology JSC
  • Assembled a product team to revamp the activity feed of a social network.
  • Redefined the activity feed as a data-driven product within the social network; defined the metrics and KPIs for the product.
  • Built an experimentation platform for developing a continuously improving product, supporting multi-variate testing for different product components.
  • Developed a recommendation engine as a core of the activity feed to personalize the activity feed of users.
  • Constructed data pipelines, including both streaming and batching to maintain feature data of the recommendation engine and support BI and data analysis. Data stack: Kafka, Cassandra, Airflow, BigQuery.
Technologies: Apache Airflow, Google Cloud Platform (GCP), Data Pipelines, Apache Kafka, Python, Social, Flask, GitHub, Back-end, Microservices

Head of Engineering

2018 - 2019
GO VIET Technology Trading Company Limited
  • Assembled a product team to deploy ride-hailing and food delivery products in Vietnam; coordinated with a regional engineering team to maintain and continuously improve products.
  • Maintained a data warehouse and developed a new data pipeline, which ensured data integrity and accessibility for BI and fraud prevention activities. Technologies used: BigQuery, Google Cloud Storage, Airflow, Pandas, and Kafka.
  • Deployed and maintained microservices on Google Compute Engine and Google Kubernetes Engine.
  • Integrated a system with banks for a money-payout process.
  • Established IT infrastructure and information security policies.
  • Created real-time monitoring dashboards with Grafana and InfluxDB.
Technologies: SQL, Grafana, Helm, Protobuf, Kubernetes, Google Cloud Platform (GCP), BigQuery, Apache Airflow, Java, Python, OpenID Connect (OIDC), GitHub, Back-end, Microservices

Co-founder | Chief Technology Officer

2015 - 2018
  • Co-founded and led an engineering and product team.
  • Worked on fintech, banking integrations, and conversational AI.
  • Created an eWallet that enables users to make P2P money transfers via a phone number, bank account, and social network. Technologies used: Java with Spring Framework, MySQL replication, microservices architecture with Docker, and Google Protobuf.
  • Implemented direct integration with the core banking API of some Vietnam banks for wallet top-ups and withdrawal transactions.
  • Developed a management platform for transactions management and monitoring.
  • Created a rule-based chatbot platform for financial use cases, supporting natural language processing for bank transfer, saving account creation, and service payments.
  • Integrated a system with eCommerce partners to purchase products and services on the eWallet app.
  • Provisioned on-premise infrastructure in a data center.
Technologies: Protobuf, Django, Python, Docker, Spring, Java, OpenID Connect (OIDC), GitHub, Back-end

Solution Architect | Technical Presales

2013 - 2015
SmartOSC Corporation (North America)
  • Advised clients in North America area wanting to build an eCommerce platform on their strategy and development plan.
  • Architected a high-level system, handled the project scoping, and generated the development timeline based on customer needs.
  • Traveled and conducted face-to-face meetings with clients in the North American area.
  • Provided technical support to existing customers, maintaining relationships with customers.
Technologies: PHP, Drupal, Symfony, Magento, eCommerce

Senior Software Engineer

2010 - 2013
SmartOSC Corporation
  • Managed a development team of 10 engineers to create an eCommerce system with seven million+ SKUs; used PHP, Symfony, MySQL replication, and PHPUnit.
  • Led a team of five in the development of a CMS for US university sports teams to upload, stream and share videos of their sports games.
  • Revamped a company's website to support metro design using PHP and Drupal.
  • Developed websites for clients in different sectors using WordPress and Drupal.
  • Maintained and supported an eCommerce platform written in PHP/CodeIgniter for a multi-brand fashion company in Europe.
Technologies: WordPress, Drupal, MySQL, Symfony, eCommerce

Search Engine Developer

2008 - 2010
Tinh Van Telecom
  • Developed custom text processors and extractors for a web search engine in Python.
  • Created a web crawler for blog searches using Python and a thread pool library.
  • Built a blogging platform with PHP and MySQL based on the Facebook app, enabling users to create blog entries on Facebook.
  • Improved the blog entries and bloggers' ranking with a PageRank-like algorithm.
  • Developed a content management system with PHP and Yii framework.
Technologies: MySQL, PHP, Python

Social News Feed System

We built a News Feed system for a social network with a few million daily active users. The system is a sub-product of the social network, in which we designed the system using a data-driven mindset. We first formed the metrics for a successful News Feed and then implemented the system to achieve the target KPI.

Technically the system was designed using microservices best practices and strictly followed the 12-factor app methodology. We used Kafka for streaming data and Airflow for batching data for the machine learning service. The heart of the News Feed system was a hybrid recommendation engine in which we tried to create several different models for different customer segments. We also made an experimentation service to set up an experiment to improve the model quickly.

Underlying tech stack includes:
• Microservices for the architecture
• Python with Flask for all the APIs
• Kafka and Airflow for data streaming and batching
• Cassandra and MongoDB for the database
• Docker and GKE for containerization and deployment
• GitLab and ArgoCD for code revision control and CI/CD

Mobile eWallet

We created a mobile eWallet on Android and IOS, aiming to make the money transfer experience as simple and as easy as possible. The eWallet facilitated direct money top-ups and withdrawals from a bank account via a host-to-host integration with the bank. It also supported P2P money transfers via a phone number and social network and product/service purchases from third-party eCommerce vendors.

Underlying Technologies:
• Microservices for the architecture
• Java with Spring Framework and Python with Django for services
• MySQL for the database
• Protobuf for interservice communication
• OAuth 2 for user authentication and authorization
• Docker for containerization
• GitLab for code revision control and CI/CD

Financial Chatbot Platform

We helped a bank to build a chatbot platform for financial services. It worked as another communication channel between the bank and its customers. Users could inquire about the balance, transfer money, create a savings account, and buy value-added services from an instant-messaging app like Facebook Messenger.

At the core of the chatbot platform, there's a message queue aiming to stream users' chat messages to the rule-based processors and stream the replies to users. On top of the core, adapters enabled the platform to be integrated with multiple services, including Facebook Messenger, Zalo, and more.

With a microservices architecture and pub/sub pattern, the platform could be easily scaled up to process a few million messages per second.
2013 - 2015

Master's Degree in Computer Science

Texas A&M University - College Station, TX, USA

2006 - 2010

Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science

VNU University of Engineering and Technology - Hanoi, Vietnam

MAY 2019 - MAY 2021

Codility Golden Award for the Niobium 2019 Challenge



Protobuf, Stripe API, jQuery, Scikit-learn, Facebook API, OpenCV, Pandas, REST APIs


BigQuery, Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE), Zsh, Git, JetBrains, Postman, Grafana, Pytest, PyCharm, Sublime Text, Helm, Stripe Checkout, Ansible, Apache Airflow, ELK (Elastic Stack), Fluentd, Terraform, ChatGPT, GitHub, Auth0


Flask, Spring, Django, Spring Boot, Symfony 2, JUnit, OAuth 2, Symfony


Python, Java, Python 3, PHP, Bash Script, JavaScript, HTML5, SQL, C++, SAML


iOS, Docker, Kubernetes, Google Cloud Platform (GCP), Amazon Web Services (AWS), MacOS, Drupal, WordPress, Magento, Amazon EC2, AWS Lambda, Drupal 8, DigitalOcean, Apache Kafka, Azure


MySQL, Amazon S3 (AWS S3), Google Cloud Storage, Redis, MongoDB, Data Pipelines, PostgreSQL, Elasticsearch, InfluxDB, Cassandra, Google Cloud


Microservices, Agile, Test-driven Development (TDD), Microservices Architecture, DevOps, Unit Testing, Automation


APIs, Back-end, Data Scraping, Data Warehouse Design, Fintech, Mobile Wallet, Mobile Banking, Chatbots, Data Warehousing, Web Crawlers, Recommendation Systems, Conversational UX, Natural Language Processing (NLP), Generative Pre-trained Transformers (GPT), Scripting, OpenAI GPT-3 API, eCommerce, Social, Stripe Subscriptions, Web Scraping, Machine Learning, Google Cloud Functions, Scraping, Data Loss Prevention (DLP), Personally Identifiable Information (PII), Single Sign-on (SSO), OpenID Connect (OIDC)

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