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Interview with our longest working Ruby expert

iRonin IT Team

We would like to introduce you to our longest working Ruby expert. In this interview with our first onboarded Ruby developer, he talks about his impressions after over 5 years of agile software development with our company and his personal career path. He also shares his thoughts on iRonin’s journey to its current prestigious position, and on the IT world in general.

Our programmer and Ruby expert Paweł was the first developer to join iRonin’s founder and current CEO, Cyprian. After reaching a personal milestone of 5 years of agile software development with our company, we caught up with him during his ever-so-busy schedule to talk about his impressions, dreams, career path, thoughts on iRonin’s growth, and views on the IT business. Additionally, we tried to find out what made him stay with one company for so long.

Q: How did your programming adventure begin and why have you chosen Ruby as a main programming language to work with?

Paweł: When I was in secondary school, I created my first website in HTML during one of the IT classes. I remember that I really enjoyed the experience and I started to wonder how more complex websites are made, such as ones with account creation or sign-in functionality. I started to search for the answer, because HTML was not enough to do this, and that’s how I discovered the PHP programming language. The day when I found out about PHP was the first day of my programming journey. A few years later I stumbled across Ruby while searching for some alternatives to PHP. I liked the way Ruby is designed.

Q: What do you enjoy the most while programming?

I think that the most fascinating thing about programming is the chance to create something from nothing. When I was a child, I loved playing with lego bricks, and now software development seems similar to me. I am still curious about how certain things on the internet work, so engaging in web application development gives me a lot of satisfaction. It provides me with an opportunity to learn about something that previously was a kind of magic to me.

Q: How did you end up working at iRonin?

I saw iRonin’s offer by chance. It was posted on a Polish website for Ruby on Rails developers. I was lucky as it was the first job offer that I answered.

Q: What do you remember about your first day at iRonin?

Just like on every first day in a new environment, I was a little nervous. Everything was new for me, but I quite enjoyed the challenge. The technological landscape and the way we develop software has evolved over the years; when I was starting out, there weren’t so many rules for developing a project, be it full-stack software development, e-commerce solutions, DevOps or IT infrastructure. Now, there are various methodologies of software development (Scrum, Agile, Kanban) that apply to our IT outsourcing company and to specific IT solutions projects.

Q: Who are you as a Ruby on Rails expert?

First of all, I am truly passionate about what I do and that is why I always pay attention to even the smallest detail of my job. I have been a programmer for 10 years now but I still very much enjoy it and I'm eager to check out the latest technologies and innovative ways of working with code. I am positive that being curious is one of the most important attributes of every developer, especially when the IT solutions business is constantly changing on a yearly, or even monthly basis.

Q: What do you think about our growth during the years you’ve been at iRonin?

I think everything that has happened in the past years was a milestone for iRonin. We aim to be a top software development company. The current position of our company is the result of hard work, years of building up the know-how, creating a network of contacts, and the experience of our CEO, Cyprian. When I first joined the company - as the first employee - HipChat and e-mail were our main communication tools, the company website was not well-developed, and the iRonin brand was not commonly known by clients or the IT solutions environment. Today, iRonin is one of the most prestigious and one of the fastest growing IT outsourcing providers in Poland. What's more, we are reaching across borders, supplying our services to clients from other countries and continents. Now, we have almost 30 highly skilled specialists from the Web, Mobile and DevOps fields, working remotely in different time zones - which means we need to use many channels of communication, depending on each project’s requirements.

Q: What should an IT outsourcing company do to keep its employees for such a long time?

Firstly, a company should make each employee feel like a needed and important part of the organization. I am not interested in any benefits offered by other software houses. For me, what’s important is the fact that iRonin, besides good financial conditions and non-financial benefits, gives me unlimited options for personal growth, such as opportunities to try out the newest technologies (NoSQL database MongoDB, a JavaScript library - React.js or Torquebox, a JRuby application platform).

I think identification with a company’s policies and philosophy is the best foundation for building loyalty and job satisfaction. iRonin’s mission to provide employees with a great life-work balance (including elastic work hours), as well as their efforts to create trust and give each team member the freedom to complete their tasks the way they think is best, are close to my heart. IT solutions of great value are deeply appreciated in today's world and iRonin puts business value and technical excellence as its priorities. Quality communication between employer and employee creates quality communication between employee and customer. The whole process can be very appealing for an employee and make him or her stay for many years in one company, like in my case.

Q: What differences do you see when comparing the IT world 5 years ago and now?

I believe that people care more about IT in general, from software development to DevOps services, than they did 5 years ago. The best proof is the early school education and the priority that is given to the teaching of programming. Our generation is dominated by the Internet. I know that 5 years ago Facebook already existed and its position was strong, but Instagram and Snapchat weren’t yet as popular. 5 years ago, I didn’t expect that many people would use Uber instead of a professional taxi, or that YouTube would replace traditional TV, also in creating new celebrities.

Q: What would you change about trends in today’s IT world?

If the main reason of coming up with new IT solutions was curiosity instead of money, it would be perfect. I am aware that many people would say that it does not matter as long as the final product works, but I believe otherwise. When you create something with passion, it becomes much more than just a commercial hit - it becomes a way of living, something that helps other people in their everyday life. Of course, there are some brands that care about quality, but most of them are not IT companies, unfortunately. Most of the IT world puts little emphasis on product usage and user experience, focusing instead on generating more and more income.

Q: Do you have any dream as a programmer?

Yes, I wish my back and my eyes never ached :)

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