Birthday parties. That fun time for awkward conversations with your fellow ‘we-are-here-for-whatshisface’ partygoers. And it won’t take long before someone asks you: “so, what is it you actually do?” Our PHP Developer always has a foolproof explanation. We asked our PHP Developer, Sander, to answer a few questions that we’re likely to ask him at a party. Maybe we’ll even find out where he buys his birthday presents for a cat.
What do you tell people you do for a living?
PHP Development at Coolblue.
And if you have to dumb it down?
I make web pages do things they couldn’t do before, or I create entirely new things. At the moment, we’re working on our own app. I’m writing the code for it, to make the app work the way we intended it to. Before that, I worked on improving the website’s search engine. We wanted to create several filters, so you can sort laptops by color, for example. This wasn’t possible before, so I wrote a code that made it possible for the website to show what colors we have. Pretty useful when you’re looking for a laptop that matches your purse.
Alright. But what about the code?
I write the code that’s needed to add new functionalities to our webshops. Like the option to filter by color. After that, the Front-end Developers in my team incorporate my code into the design of the website. This way, the customer is shown a sparkly filter, instead of my code.
What’s the first thing you do after singing your colleagues awake?
First, I check my inbox before I start my daily control checks. See if all the servers are still running, and make sure the app’s up-and-running. By 09:30 there’s a daily stand-up with the entire team; the rest of the morning I’m busy coding.
All of that without a cup of coffee?
I always get to work early, so by the time the rest of my team shows up I’m already having my third cup of wakey juice.
What makes you happy, for real?
When the team finishes a new product, or part of it. My code isn’t directly visible, so when my colleagues have turned it into something that can actually be seen, I’m on cloud nine. As a team, we’ll be a bit closer to the final product, like a fully functional app. And it allows me to show off at home what I’ve been working on.
And what does your team look like?
It looks amazing! They’re all supermodels. But, that’s probably not what you meant. There’s another PHP Developer in my team. Besides him, there are also 2 iOS-Developers who turn my code into visible functionalities in the app. There’s also someone who checks whether the user experience is up to snuff. A so-called UX Designer. Then there’s a Product Owner, who sets the team’s goals and priorities. Finally, we have a Team Lead who makes sure that we can all work on our own piece of the project.
Are you responsible for the personal improvement of those around you?
We’re all responsible for helping each other improve. As for myself, I’m a Senior Developer. This means I get to coach all of my fellow Developers so that they can become even better at what they do.
What’s the weirdest question you’ve ever been asked about your job?
The strangest thing is that everyone seems to think that Developers only sit behind their computers all day long. They’re so wrong. Half the time, we’re investigating what new functionalities need our immediate attention. The more experienced you are, the better you become at this sort of detective work.
In what case would you refer me to Careers at Coolblue?
If I can see that you are tech-savvy, like to build new things, and enjoy finding out how things work. Other than that, you need to enjoy working in a team. And be fearless in the face of all-out Nerf battles.
So, where do you buy presents for a cat?
From a cat-alog.