Kamila’s Diary: A day in the life of a Tech Trainee

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Author: Kamila Nitta

Four months ago, I started the Tech Trainee Programme at Adevinta, and I still need to pinch myself from time to time to believe that I’ve had this amazing opportunity. 

Before starting, I had no experience as a developer. I graduated in Marketing and Advertising in Brazil before moving to Germany where I worked in Digital Marketing. I was one of the tool testers in an international tech company in Dusseldorf, where I had the pleasure of working with people from all around the world. As part of my role, I worked closely with the tech team and became intrigued by what they did and how it helped us optimise our own work. 

 

The beginning of my tech journey

Coronavirus had a huge impact on my former company and resulted in me leaving. At first, I worried about what I would do next, but I used the time off to think properly about what I wanted to do. I experimented in lots of different areas including interior design, goldsmithery, carpentry and UI design. All of those experiences were in a creative field, but I felt like something more analytical was missing. A good friend of mine introduced me to the coding world and I became excited by all the things I could do if I learnt it properly. It was mind blowing!

Through his recommendation, I did a Coding Bootcamp and this was my entry ticket into the extraordinary world of coding. The programme was very intensive and I learnt a lot in a short space of time.  Although I felt like my brain was about to explode with all this new information, I was very excited thinking about all the possibilities that coding could bring. One of the key takeaways from the course was how united the tech world is and how there is an unspoken rule to help anyone who needs it. I love this sense of community. 

I was just finishing my course when I saw the trainee post opportunity on the Bootcamp’s slack channel. I hadn’t really thought about jobs but the programme opportunity seemed so well structured and in ebay kleinanzeigen, a company that I have always admired and used often, so I didn’t want to lose this chance!

 

The Tech Trainee Programme

The whole hiring process was super-well organised and every single person I came across was extremely kind and supportive. I still remember how I was shaking when I received the message that I was accepted-OMG, I was so happy and grateful!

There were six of us starting as trainees together, and I had never felt so welcome during the onboarding process. Within the two year programme, we will rotate across the three companies that are part of Adevinta in Germany: eBay Kleinanzeigen, mobile.de and the Global Tech Hub.

All the trainees are part of a different team and have an assignment lead, a people manager and a mentor. This is great as it means we have lots of people around us for support and I feel so lucky to have two mentors!  

 

What my working day looks like 

No two days are the same, but I will describe a typical Wednesday in the Friedrichshain office.  

6:00 AM - I wake up early so it means I can enjoy a few more minutes just lying in bed before the day begins. After this, the first thing I do is make my bed - I can’t be at peace if my bed isn’t tidy and I like to do that whilst listening to some music or podcasts, depending on the mood I’m in. 

6:30 AM - I get ready in the bathroom and if I have time, I meditate for 10 mins. 

7:00 AM - I prepare my breakfast. I like a simple breakfast and don’t mind eating the same thing every day. Normally, I’ll have scrambled eggs with toast, a cappuccino and some vitamins. 

7:30 AM - I get ready for work. 

8:00 AM - I head to the train station. On the way, I listen to music and look at the beautiful city of Berlin.

8:50 AM - At the office, I’ll pour myself some water and a cup of coffee. The coffee always sets the day up for me. The office is usually quiet due to the pandemic but some colleagues come once a week just to change their routine and see people. Although it can be tiring commuting for an hour, I really enjoy seeing and talking to people so I prefer to be in the office. In order to keep everyone safe at the office, we have to follow some rules and have a wellness station at the office entrance with e disposable masks and fast tests for people to use.

The wellness station at the office entrance - stay safe

 

9:30 AM - I attend the daily meeting, a call where each team member says what they have worked on the day before and what their plan is for that day. 

Me at the office

 

10:00 AM - My team mentor, Juan, normally assigns a task for me and I start it by reading and understanding what I have to do. If needed, we have a quick call for him to explain in more detail.

As I am still learning, it still takes some time to understand the code - it’s huge!  Researching is an important skill for a developer and I often need to research what it is that I have to implement. 

At the moment, I am working on a loading effect for the user’s ‘manage ads’ page.


Video calls with Juan are fun

 

12:00 PM - Mahlzeit! The group goes for lunch together, normally at an Asian restaurant - our favourite one! From living in Germany, I’ve learnt how fresh air, especially in the winter, is good, so I really enjoy this small walk to the restaurant.

1:00 PM - Like a good Brazilian, I need to have a coffee after lunch, it helps me to get in the work mood again.

Coffee time

 

2:00 PM - By this time, I am working through the task, and whenever I get stuck, which happens quite a lot at this stage, I have my mentor there to rescue me. I call him Mirko-San. He is super knowledgeable and always teaches me useful tricks that make the work easier.


Mirko helps me when I am stuck

 

Coffee Break - Pietro is also part of the trainee programme, and, like me, he is assigned to the Global Tech Hub as the first part of the rotation. We have decided to go to the office every Wednesday so we can chat about our process and what we have learned so far. Although we have chosen different paths, Pietro is learning Swift (programming language for iOS devices) and I am learning Frontend development. It's really useful to exchange experiences and share the challenges we are facing. 


Pietro and me

4:00 PM - The biggest challenge for me so far is to understand the huge files I have to work with - they look different from the ones from my Bootcamp. But luckily, there are many smart tricks you can learn that make everything work smoothly. I think it is very beneficial for me when I can do pair programming with my mentors and sometimes other team members as it's interesting to see the different ways of coding, and which ways work - it helps me to develop my own style and find out what works better for me.

6:00 PM - After long hours looking at the code, it is time to pack. Today I am going to meet with a friend and visit an art gallery. Berlin has so many nice cultural options.

Normally when I work from home I start my work day earlier as I don’t have to commute. This means I can finish earlier so then I can cook something light before going to the gym. If I’m not too tired, I watch some YouTube videos - tutorials, interviews, or I read the book I got as a gift from my team called ‘The Culture Map’.

10:30 PM - Time to go to bed. Tomorrow is another day.

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