How does your typical day at News UK team look like?
With the current pandemic situation, my day differs a little bit from what a typical one in the office looks like. But I always start my day with a cup of coffee and a short Hangouts call with my colleagues to catch up. Usually, I prepare a plan and outline the main things I want to achieve the day before. I review the list in the morning, and also check if any new messages came along. If needed, I adjust my priorities. Then basically start working on the list of tasks. I try to kick off with the most challenging ones in the morning, as I feel a lot more focused then.
During the day, I have the typical Scrum meetings – stand-ups, planning, etc. Towards the end of the day, I usually do a few peer reviews with my colleagues to get feedback on the tasks I’ve finished, as well as provide feedback for their tasks. I wrap up the day by writing the list for the next one.
What’s your favourite part of the job?
I love the diversity of sub-projects. I work on different parts of the application every quarter/half year depending on priorities. This way I can never get bored. My main focus is The Times newspaper’s website, native applications and an open-source component library. This quarter I’m working on performance measurement and improvement.
Another favourite part of my job is the atmosphere in the team. It is quite amazing and we are very close. We even play League of Legends after work with some of the colleagues :)
And the most challenging?
As this project is quite big, there are a lot of interdependencies. When you are working even on a small functionality change, you need to make sure that what you are changing is not affecting any other parts of the system.
What new skills have you picked up while at News UK team?
News UK provides training programmes in different directions (e.g. soft skills, AWS specific training, DevOps, etc.). Last year I participated in training focused on improving presentation skills. I can definitely say that my English level and communication skills have significantly picked up during the last year.
Another interesting approach that I got familiar with is test-driven development. We develop everything with testing in mind. Some of our products have 100% code coverage. The tests that we prepare include unit, integration, visual, snapshot testing.
Name the top 3 things that make News UK team awesome.
The current situation with everyone working remotely very well indicates whether the team you work in is strong and has good synergy. I can say that during the last few months, I have not felt any challenges - both in technical and social aspect. We support each other with the tasks and we have online coffee meetings every day to talk about how everyone is doing.