Tell us about your experience applying for the placement? (For example, how easy was the application process, how long did it take from you to hear back from Flooid?)
I applied online from my University Careers website and a couple of weeks later, I received a phone call from a lead developer at Flooid to schedule a phone interview for a couple of days later.
In the telephone interview, we discussed common technologies used at Flooid along with some programming theory. I was then given a ring from HR informing me that I was successful and moved onto the next stage of the process.
How did you find the assessment day overall (For example, how was the atmosphere, did you feel welcomed, length of the day)?
The assessment day was completed online using Microsoft Teams. We started at 8am and it lasted the whole day. We began the day with a teams call where everyone introduced themselves along with an introduction to the company. Thereafter, we were then split into three teams who alternated between a team exercise, presentations and programming and logical reasoning tests. This concluded the morning session. In the afternoon, we had some pair-programming interviews along with a formal interview.
What was it like to prepare for the presentation on the day and to pitch your presentation to the team?
I was given three options for the presentation and had a couple of weeks to prepare. I was able to read up on all three topics and decide which one I wanted to present and then got to work preparing the presentation. I was then asked to present to two interviewers and answer any questions at the end.
Overall I found the presentation experience a lot less ‘scary’ than I anticipated!
Did you feel you were well informed in the run up to your placement?
Yes, we were kept in the loop with activities being sent from the company to get us up to speed with some of the technologies commonly used at Flooid.
What were you nervous about before starting your placement role with Flooid?
Not really, I was provided with a lot of information from the company, so I was well prepared for the placement.
How did you find your induction week into Flooid?
The induction week gave me an insight of the company and building. We were given our kit and guided through all the installation processes to get everything up and running. We were also introduced the Flooid stack and POS system.
How do you feel you have settled into the team?
I feel like I have settled in well with the team considering that we have been working remotely. I have had a lot of pair-programming sessions so that I can familiarise myself with the codebase and ask any questions I might have. The team are great at explaining things…
What real-world projects have you been working on?
I have been working on integrating the payment service for a payment wallet provider into the Flooid Product.
What have been your highlights over the period?
I have managed to help solve problems and have committed my code to the Flooid repositories.
What new skills have you learned?
I have had to do a lot of pair programming to get up to speed with the Flooid codebase. This has led to me learning how to effectively pair program.
What have you found challenging? What are you still working to overcome?
The codebase is huge. This means that there is a lot to learn when you start although the team have been great at guiding me through and explaining the different components during pair programming sessions.
How have you found the relationship with your mentor / departmental manager?
I feel like I get along well with my mentor, and he has been helpful with getting me setup and putting me on the right track to help solve issues.
How have you found the relocation experience (if applicable)?
At the start of the placement, I had to commute into the office in Coventry. This took me 1h 30mins but ultimately, I decided to stay at home as the majority of my team is also remote thus meaning that it would be much more productive to work from home rather than commute.
What advice would you give to others thinking of applying next year- any words of wisdom?
Try to get familiar with Java and programming concepts (dependency management and injection etc) and learn about different technologies used in programming such as Docker, Databases (relational, SQL, NoSQL, document databases).
Familiarise yourself with the retail space also, learn about what Flooid does and how the changing landscape affects retail in terms of point of sale (Amazon’s cashier less stores are a good example of this).
Are there any team wins that have happened that you can describe?
We have managed to merge some stories into the main branch and also, we managed to fix some bugs and merge with the customer branch in good time.
What have you enjoyed most about the placement?
I’ve mostly enjoyed the approach given to work at Flooid and the ability to work on a range of real-world tasks across the different tech stacks we use (Java/Spring backend and an Ionic/Angular frontend). This has really broadened my horizons and has taught me how to logically approach a problem where the solution may be across several projects. It’s also easy to get support when needed as we have a lot of experts in the different areas who are very helpful with addressing problems that I’ve ran into.
What’s the best activity/project you have worked on during your placement?
I’ve been working on a Placement Project where I’ve been designing, architecting, and developing an internal tool which will be used to parse data into the file used by our data flow manager software. This has been particularly enjoyable as being a brand-new project from the ground-up, I’ve been given a lot more freedom in selecting the technologies used. This has allowed me to create this project using more modern languages and frameworks such as Kotlin and its Multiplatform framework. We’re able to use this project to also evaluate these frameworks and determine their usability in our mainline products.
On the product side, I’ve been working on delivering a feature to our Hand-Held-Terminals product. I’ve particularly enjoyed working on this project as I had become familiar with the codebase and typescript so was able to work on the project with greater independence and have a strong influence in planning and task creation. Being more proficient with the stack I was able to learn some tricks to write code a lot more concisely and efficiently.
Do you have any advice for others considering starting their career at Flooid?
Try to get familiar with Java, Typescript, and programming concepts (dependency management and injection etc) and learn about different technologies used in the development space such as Docker. I’d also recommend learning about the different frameworks we use such as Spring, Angular, Single Spa (for micro frontends) and their best practices. We also have a large data layer in the codebase so its also important to learn about DBMS tooling such as SQL, myBatis, mongo etc.
Familiarise yourself with the retail space too and learn about what Flooid does and how the changing landscape affects the sale experience for both the user and cashier
What’s next for you?
In September, I’m back at University where I’ll be completing my Cyber Security Degree