Life Before Coding
Prior to my career as a software developer, I was working as an econometrician. Essentially, this role involved working out how effective marketing campaigns were. It required a lot of data analysis primarily in Excel. However, as some of the datasets grew and we had to work from home due to COVID, the speed of data processing became slower and slower. As a result, I decided to use Python to help analyse the datasets.
This experience, along with being exposed to a few introductory programming courses I had taken sporadically throughout my career, and using the R programming language to complete my university dissertation, helped solidify my interest in programming. So, I decided to talk to software engineers I knew to learn more about the life of a software engineer. The software engineers I spoke with mentioned how they enjoyed problem-solving and the logical thinking involved in software development. Having a soft spot for logical thinking, and being known for enjoying puzzles, this really resonated with me.
All of this culminated in me taking the leap into the world of software development by joining a software development bootcamp!
Software Development Life Begins…
The last part of the bootcamp was to create a final project. Our group developed a card game using React.js. This was an incredibly valuable learning experience as I got to learn a new technology in a short space of time and contribute to creating a card game from scratch.
Life After Bootcamp
Finding a job after the bootcamp proved to be a challenge because many roles required prior experience, creating a catch-22 situation for someone without proper work experience as a software developer. However, after persistent efforts, I was able to secure a great role as a front-end software developer at Rightmove.
Working for Rightmove has been an immensely positive experience. There is support from a buddy, dedicated time for learning and development on a weekly basis, and engaging project work.
At Rightmove, I am part of the internal systems group. Our focus is developing software that helps Rightmove function as a business, mainly working on things that customers (for Rightmove these are typically Estate Agents) and consumers (for Rightmove these are individuals looking to buy or rent a home) normally do not see. I work as part of the business partnerships team, which involves managing the customer journey from the registration of interest to joining Rightmove as a customer.
One of the aspects that make working as part of my team interesting is the collaborative nature of the work. We work closely with other engineers, the designer, the product owner, and our quality assurance engineer. The work at Rightmove has been diverse and captivating. In my six months at Rightmove, I have been fortunate enough to make adjustments to the public website, allowing customers to register their interest in Rightmove. I have also worked on implementing a user flow for the customer support team to facilitate the processing of prospective customers. Additionally, I have made changes to the pricing tool and helped deploy a template for a major upcoming project. Most recently, I have begun developing new features for our next project. As you can see, there has been quite a variety of work.
Ultimately, the journey of software development has been both challenging and enjoyable. It has required a lot of hard work, dedication, and financial sacrifice (if you choose to give up a career), hence making this decision is something that should not be taken lightly. On the flip side, it has been truly rewarding to tackle coding challenges, build projects, delve into the inner workings of technology, and lift the lid on what has been a mysterious world for the majority of my life.