My first 6 months at Rareloop

Penny Cox Software Developer at Rareloop

Penny Cox, Software Developer joined the Rareloop team in January. Starting a new job in the middle of a pandemic, completely remote, was definitely a very different experience. I sat down with her (virtually) and chatted to her about her first six months, making the transition from client-side and learning a whole new programming language!

Tell me a little bit about yourself?

I’ve been a software developer since I graduated, and before Rareloop, I’d only ever worked at one company. I practically grew up there. As a Microsoft-based company, I primarily used .NET to develop desktop applications and tools rather than web apps and mobile apps.

How did you feel about joining Rareloop and changing programming languages?

I first learned about Rareloop as they were helping fund a community playground project close to my home. I did a bit of research and quickly found that they were a company that echoed my personal values too. It helped reading about Michelle’s experience working at Rareloop. I saw that they were looking for a new Software Developer and I got in touch with Joe.

Often developers are classified by the programming language they use, PHP, .NET, Javascript. But it was really refreshing chatting to Joe about the role and making that shift. He reassured me that the principles and practices of being a good software developer are more important than the tools and languages you use. It’s much more difficult to teach a good work ethic than it is to teach a new programming language. And although knowing the syntax for something is really handy, your approach to solving technical challenges and developing the right solution is the real basis for everything you do. The change felt quite exciting after that!

Tell me a little bit more about your role?

As a Software Developer, I work on projects that need API integration, where two or more different systems need to pass data between them. That could be an Ionic mobile app, an Angular web app on a Laravel back-end API or specific third-party integrations for a website. In the past six months I’ve worked on so many different projects and clients including; Merchant Navy Welfare Board, the ICE app, Try Dry App for ACUK and more recently Intelligent Insurance. Intelligent Insurance is exciting because as a new client I’ll lead the project from the very beginning right through till launch.

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What have you found working at Rareloop?

I would say that three big things set Rareloop apart:

1. Quality and attention to detail

It was clear from day one, how passionate the team are about high-quality readable code and attention to detail. Not only does our software need to do the job it was designed for, but also every line of code written by the team can be understood and picked up by anyone else. Adam, Senior Developer says “You shouldn’t be able to tell who wrote the code”. It brings a whole new challenge to developing the best possible output, but it’s one that everyone benefits from. Our partners get top quality work, and our team can work seamlessly together.

2. The team

Starting a new job remotely was something completely new for me. Getting to know everyone and understanding the team dynamics with people I’d never met was a real challenge. But the team is so open, friendly and relaxed they made it so much easier. I had welcome chats with everyone, shadowed other developers and they made it clear that they wanted to be interrupted and are here to help. It was a real relief.

We’ve even started trying new ways to encourage that natural conversation through online tools like Discord. We will often all hang out in an online room with some music and general conversion. We might chat about work projects, family or what treats people have got for lunch. It’s a nice way to feel like a team without all being in the same room. I’ve loved the flexibility of being at home and being there for the family, but it will be really lovely to meet everyone in person.

3. Making a difference

Knowing that the projects I am working on are making a difference is the best feeling. I love that the products we develop change lives, like the Try Dry app, or even just make online experiences easier and better. Tech for good isn’t just nice to say. It sits at the heart of all projects at Rareloop.

Careers at Rareloop

We are always on the lookout for good people if you’d like to find out more about our current vacancies get in touch. We can’t wait to hear from you.

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