2 minute read

From Apprentice to Journeyman


Having started my software engineering journey about 48 months ago, I had only had fragmented knowledge of basic HTML and CSS. The closest I've every touched Javascript back then was when I had to manipulate or adjust certain variables inside jQuery scripts.


I felt that writing code was a really enjoyable process, where you had to solve problems and through the iterative process of trial and error. You get the sense of achievement when you managed to solve the problem. When I decided to embark on this journey, it was a pure gamble in some sense whereby I dropped everything comfortable for something unknown.

I was frustrated with my job which I spent 14 years of my life at, sick of the archaic standards and rigid processes and most of all I had the worst experience the last 5 years. I wanted to be free, I wanted an environment where the collective mindset was about growth.

Moving onward?

Fortune favours the bold.

When I started out, things didn't go according to plan for most of it. The bootcamp that I wanted to join suffered delays due to regulation issues. But along the way I met like-minded people and with a support community around, it sort of cushioned the lonely times and frustrating nights where you got stuck trying to figure out how to "center a div".

But the turning point came really fast and like a speeding bullet, I went from 10km/h to 100km/h within a span of 18 months. The first company to believe in my abilities, Software Risk. An outstanding CTO, Dr Dennis and two unbelievably awesome Seniors who helped me through the learning curve. Though it was unfortunate, that I got retrenched there, it provided me with a stepping stone into the world of Software Engineering.

With that knowledge I gained, I joined my next company Bitsmedia. I worked really hard to gain the trust from my teammates and Tech Lead. Working on a range of projects, I was provided the opportunity to work on integrating a new payment gateway and a new video streaming project.

During my time there, I had many calls from different recruiters and companies and was exposed to many opportunities. However, it was when the HR of Transcelestial contacted me. We discussed the role and opportunities available, I was convinced it checked all of my boxes. Golang check, Benefits check, Location check, Pay meh (I had higher offers, but I still picked this.). After moving over, the first weeks were amazing. Up till now, I'm still in awe about what the company has achieved there are so many domain experts around to learn from optical, mechanical, electronics, and of course software. As I move out of my probationary period, I've started to learn more about the hardware integrations, which is just the tip of the iceberg from the vast codebase they have.

Final thoughts

Even though we're moving towards a recession, opportunities are still around, I personally feel that the need for software engineers will still be in high demand for the next decade. Though many Tech companies are reducing hires or cutting headcount, in another sense this move is for a company to right size and outlast the recession slump.

But with how things move so fast nowadays, the slump might not last as some people expect it to be.

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