Hey, engineers! What do you actually want to know about a data company’s culture?
By: Alin - 18 October 2022
As an engineer
If you had a penny for each time you rolled your eyes when you got approached for a job, what would you do with the money?
Even more disappointing if you’re a Senior, since inflation is probably deflating the value of this imaginary hard earned piggy bank as we speak.
Can you even keep an eye out for “challenging opportunities” (will we ever use these words again without cringing?) while getting hijacked by irritating euphemisms, buzzwords and corporate slang that most often try to make up for the ambiguity behind closed doors?
Welcome to an unsolicited game of “Spot the difference” between a genuine potential career upgrade and all the noise disguised as “the next amazing job” that invites you for a tech “deep dive”, only to end up in the shallow (in the sha-ha sha-ha-llow ) of a puddle.
It was only going to be a matter of time until you developed thisnoise cancelation feature — the skill of seeing right through the “awesome Ninja wanted” discourse. Luckily, spotting the mismatch quickly saves you time, though we all know it builds up frustration.
The alternative has become overpriced <screams in programming language of choice/>. While acknowledging the privilege that comes with a career in the field, the time it takes to assess and answer all the invites you get requires a part-time job (503 service unavailable), if you do it properly. An effort you didn’t ask for, won’t get paid for, but should at least be respected for.
If you had a penny for each time you willingly rolled up your sleeves together with exceptional people, using actual breakthrough technology (gasp!), how much more do you need to pay for 1h of parking in Bucharest? What does the community owe you at this point?
Hear us out.
Witnessing the evolution of #data is nothing compared to actually working with it. While startup founders usually wear a lot of hats, sharing both the freedom and responsibility with the team is a mega incentive for everyone involved.
Our exponential growth stands proof that an effective blend of technical and business backgrounds is a fierce ace up the sleeve when you want to break new ground. Here’s how that’s relevant:
This is where the prequel comes in
For context, before building Soleadify, our 3 co-founders (meetSorina, Florin and Mihai) worked at companies that impacted billions of users, having been exposed to diverse areas of technology that span from full stack web development to Big Data and robust Cloud infrastructure, as well as their product and business development proficiency.
This broad mix, critical to a true data-driven mindset, has been imprinted in our company’s culture since day one. And it massively steps up our game as engineers.
As Soleadify keeps growing, the leaders’ common vision shapes this data-driven mindset through a dual #engineering and business culture. Which, in turn, preserves our merit-based, no BS, value-oriented work philosophy.
Speaking the same language is the best thing since sliced bread, as it enables us to go considerably further when it comes to data, without getting lost in translation.
We’re going the whole nine yards to build something greater than any of us as individuals could ever achieve on our own. And yep, it’s a major relief to have everyone on the same side.
Here’s what we mean:
We’re aware it takes a village to achieve high performance.
We never settle for mediocre results.
We don’t try to do a job we’re not qualified for, we hire people who are top in their field for that. Some of our colleagues have started their own wildly successful businesses, sold them and are now working with us to build something that stands the test of time once again.
We go for remarkable people, not stack experts. You can learn any tech stack if you’re exceptional, hardly the other way round. Else, how could a 24 year old be Head of ML? MeetClaudiu. Or a 25 year old – Head of Infrastructure? Meet Alex.
We expose you to groundbreaking professional challenges and the autonomy to try stuff for the very first time, no matter how experienced you are.
We use the right tool for the job. No workarounds, no cutting corners. Breakthrough technology declutters our day to day and gives us the space to channel our efforts on what can’t be compensated for — the best use of our skills and abilities.
Access to academic papers often serves as our only formal guiding tool in moving onwards. We can’t rely on Stack Overflow for answers to issues that haven’t been addressed before by any other company in the world.
We solve super complex problems without being told how to solve them. We have the freedom to make technical choices. And the strong sense of ownership associated with that.
We’re high performing individuals who enjoy teaming up to untangleunavoidably difficult scenarios. At our most effective in a collaborative space, we learn from each other and are particularly invested in paying it forward.
We know from the get-go that excellence requires discomfort and it’s not going to get easier soon. Yet, it’s not about how easy it is, is it? We’re seriously motivated to deal with the necessary pain of sustained effort and delayed gratification that comes with pioneering work and long-term thinking.
Needless to say how much we enjoy the sweet taste of hard-won breakthroughs. We’re afraid of nothing. We celebrate our wins, learn our lessons and keep pushing forward.
The way we work is not for everyone. And that’s perfectly fine. We need to be fast as a startup and we expect everyone to be quick on their feet when it comes to making decisions and delivering their part.
And we’ll say it clearly:
There will be pain: intense hours, frustration from not having a step by step guide to solutions and judgemental friends when your mind slips to yet unresolved issues at work ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Forget play-by-play guidance and that kind of feedback where you just execute what you’re told, the way you’re told. You’ll work with top performers and will have a lot to learn from them, but they won’t be holding hands with you as you get on the other side of each obstacle. At times, you’ll need some patience before getting their undivided time and attention. As much as we all strive to help each other out, each of us also has their own mountain peaks to conquer. In the meantime, you’ll have to craft your own ways to hand in your best possible work for each task.
We come to the office regularly: revolutions happen collectively and our hybrid work means exactly this: it’s hybrid. You will be at home at times, but you will spend significant time with your team, as well. To actually benefit from their expertise, to share your own and to create original demanding things together. As an added bonus, you can count on our captivating, off the dome discussions at lunch. MeetAndrei, a walking encyclopedia and one of our most prolific providers of quirky topics to debate. Also, one of the gems that make up our ML team.
There’s nothing perfect in the way we work. Not yet, anyways. Team is expanding, we’re continuously building, new processes and procedures emerge as they are needed and are customized to make sure they serve us best, not the other way around. There’s some order and there’s some chaos. And in between, there’s Andra, the “not your typical” HR Leader who will help you navigate our realm.
So far, there hasn’t been as much celebration as we want and deserve. We aim to have a break more often and raise a glass to what we’ve already accomplished, but there’s still some work to be done here. See? More work. We can’t help it. JK, we know how to have fun. And we can prove it.
If you’ve read this far, you should be able to determine upfront whether you would thrive in a culture like ours. Having your expectations of professional growth in mind, we trust you are able to tell whether the above could be a potential driver to your success.
As you’ve probably figured out, we’re on an accelerated growth path, ready to expand our Big Data, Machine Learning and Software Engineering teamsin the near future. Here’s all the info you need to know: bit.ly/Soleadify_Careers.
If you’ve heard these buzzwords before and think we’re the same, let’s talk.We’ll prove you wrong.