In high school, I specialised in maths. At university, I specialised in software.
I have a BSc in Computer Science at University of Essex and an MSc in Information Systems at Manchester Business School. I am also an Oracle Certified Professional in Java SE 7.
I think it’s getting increasingly more important to be comfortable working in the cloud and being able to quickly pick up and configure new tools to work together. The era of just writing code in a server is coming to an end.
In high school, I liked maths a lot. I participated at the National Maths Olympiad in Romania a few times and at many other national maths contests. So I got used to problem-solving from an early age. However, I knew close to nothing related to tech before starting university.
I chose a degree in Computer Science thinking it would be a natural progression from maths. However, I don’t think these two are too linked anymore in this day and age.
After finishing university, I joined a graduate programme at a large telecoms company. Then I worked for a large media company. And in recent years I had several roles in many smaller companies in fintech, healthtech and insurtech industries.
I am specialised in backend. But I don’t think I made an actual conscious decision myself about it. University courses were quite centred around backend systems and languages: networks, databases, C, Java, etc. I basically came out of Uni with Java as my main language and then naturally fitted in enterprise backend systems.
Over the years, I mainly worked on user-facing APIs for different products and in different languages. I’ve mainly coded in Java, Scala and Golang so far.
Looking back, I’m happy with backend and I wouldn’t like it any other way.
This role is pretty different from my recent roles from an organisational perspective. I’m working for a recently-acquired start-up in a larger more established payments company. I am very curious to see how start-up and enterprise cultures will meet in my future team.
I am always excited to work on exciting products. I consider myself product first and I generally believe that the user need (product) takes precedence over the developer need (tech). I am always happy when I ship a new feature to thousands of users I will never meet.
Working at pace is also something I’m keen on. I believe in working in many small iterations; get user feedback early and then learn & adjust.
I hope to be able to live and breathe these cultural traits in my future career.
It was very time consuming. I was manually applying to companies I was interested in. So I had to fill in many forms and wait for a reply which might or might not come.
The other big problem was that I was only applying for the companies I was aware of. But there was a whole heap of up-and-coming startups and by the time I heard about them they’d already be larger enterprises.
Trust in Hired! I got all of my last four roles through the Hired platform and every time the process has been as quick and as optimal. The design of the platform hasn’t changed much since the early days; and I see this as a success making me think that the company nailed a few things from the get go.
Just try it! It’s free, you can always turn off your profile. If it’s on, though, my advice is to be fair and treat companies the way you’d like the companies to treat you. So reply to interview requests in a reasonable timeframe.
For engineers early in their careers, I advise trying out a few different teams and/or companies. I found this to be the fastest way to learn core skills. As you get to work with lots of more experienced engineers, you’ll have something different to learn from each one.