Meet the team: Hugo Duarte, Software Engineer

Someone typing on an open laptop displaying a code editor
Someone typing on an open laptop displaying a code editor
Someone typing on an open laptop displaying a code editor

It’s been a minute since we delved into the “Day in the Life” content because, let’s face it, not much has changed for any of us during 2020. We’re fortunate to be busy with client projects, actively planning for 2021 and putting things in motion for the complete renovation of our office space (more on this soon!), all the while working remotely.

We welcome Hugo to the team earlier this year - he was one of the 4 welcomed around the first lockdown - and since then, we caught up with him to find out more about him, his role and what his KOMODO experience has been like so far.

So let’s get down to it, shall we?

Life at KOMODO: Hugo Duarte

Hugo joined us as Software Engineer back in April 2020, right in the middle of the first UK lockdown. A tricky time to change jobs and join a new business, that’s for sure. But, as we’ve all discovered throughout the course of this year, comfort zones are constantly being shaken up so it’s best to just embrace the change and get on with it.

What does your role entail?

My role as a Software Engineer involves working with technologies such as PHP, Backpack, Laravel and some JavaScript as a member of the PHP team. Besides working on the implementation of projects, I also get to be involved in other areas of the Software Development lifecycle, such as Planning, Analysis and Testing, which is extremely rewarding and allows me to develop a deeper knowledge regarding the project(s) I am currently assigned to and the related business areas they impact.

Within the team, we also take the time to review each other's work as it is submitted, providing an opportunity to improve by learning from others while enhancing the quality of the work we produce as an agency.

Describe a typical working day:

I started working at KOMODO when the quarantine started, so unfortunately I have not had the chance to experience working from the office just yet.

I usually like to start my days early, I do some exercise after I prepare a strong coffee and then sit at my office desk between 8:00 and 8:30, ready to work. After going through unread emails and Slack messages, I check my calendar to see if there are any meetings I need to prepare upfront. At 9:15 we have our daily standup meeting where each of us shares what we did the day before and what are our plans for today. It’s extremely important to know what we are all currently working on and if there is anything we can do to help each other pass any blockers that might exist.

After the meeting finishes, it’s time to get on with any tasks that I have for the day, firstly tackling any pull requests, as I like to get these out of the way early in the mornings. After that, I either continue work on a previous task or pick up a new one from the Jira board of the project I am assigned to. Then it’s just about cracking on!

Lunchtimes in lockdown usually consist of a salad, another strong coffee and a walk with my partner - it’s good to get away from my desk, especially as the home is work and work is home these days!

In the afternoon I basically do the same as I do in the morning: go through any unread emails and messages and catch up on the office banter on Slack, as it’s usually worth it. Again I put my music on or sometimes an audiobook depending on the task, and start working on it again until either is done and I can submit a PR or it is at a state where I believe it is safe to commit it and if necessary continue to work on it the next day.

I tend to take a couple of 5 minutes breaks throughout the day in order to stretch my legs and just move around the house, as it is not healthy to be sitting in the same room for long periods of time.

What do you love most about working at KOMODO?

What I love most about KOMODO is the environment, the people and its values which closely align with my own. Before joining the agency, my instinct told me KOMODO would be a great place to work and especially somewhere I could grow as a Software Engineer. I was definitely right!

It’s great to have the opportunity to learn from highly talented professionals in different areas who produce quality, industry-leading work. From senior management to team leads to colleagues, there is always someone available to help you to achieve your goals, either by helping you complete a task, advising on how to overcome any issue you are facing or simply providing you time to go through some online training in order to develop yourself as a Software Engineer.

It’s a fantastic environment, regardless of the fact we’re all working at home right now!

All in all, it is a collaborative effort as a team by helping each other to achieve not only individual goals but ultimately also KOMODO’s aspirations and goals as an agency.

What 1 piece of advice would you give someone who was thinking of applying for a job with us?

Be yourself, and because you are likely to have to go through a technical test, I would make sure to align your software development practice routines according to the technology stack used in the role you are applying to before the interview while adhering to best practices and unit testing. Certainly, this will allow you to do well!

Got an idea? Let us know.

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