Full interview in Russian at the bottom of the article (Полное интервью на русском языке внизу статьи).
Tell us a little about yourself, where you are from and how you ended up at bunq?
My name is Egor and I am from Chelyabinsk, Russia. I lived most of my life in Chelyabinsk before moving to Moscow to study at the Higher School of Economics. After graduating, I moved to the Czech Republic and lived there for a year. I was approached on LinkedIn with an opportunity to come and work at bunq in the Netherlands to help develop an application for the coolest mobile bank in Europe.
What is your role at bunq and how did the expectations of joining match up with reality?
At bunq, I develop our Android application and am responsible for releases in our Android team. One fine day, I received a LinkedIn message from one of the recruiters at bunq and after going through the interview process, ending with a Get Shit Done day (Trial Day) at the bunq office, I was offered a job. Without thinking twice, I agreed and moved to the Netherlands.
I had no expectations other than working on an interesting project. But the work here is completely different from previous projects in which I participated.
Of the unexpected things, I really noticed our approach to errors. Multiple times during my time here, I’ve heard the phrase that we all learn in the course of work. Errors should not be addressed by reprimanding colleagues. Instead, we do a full analysis of the process where the error occurred. This helps us to understand the real reasons why the mistake happened, and encourages us to come up with ways to prevent these problems in the future. Thus, each employee teaches the company how best to build processes, while gaining professional experience.
Another unusual thing for me was our app updates. Every 3-4 months we have a bunq update - this is a presentation explaining what we have been working on which includes a lot of amazing new features. Here, I meet users face to face and hear their live and enthusiastic feedback, while visiting the largest theater in Amsterdam.
I was also surprised by the beer round. On Fridays near the end of the working day, before the weekly company meeting, people from our office push a cart with drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) through the office.
What is different about working at bunq from your cultural perspective?
Our team is very international. You can always find the best travel advice from your colleagues and learn a lot about places you’ve never been. This makes it easy to learn about the differences in cultures, behavior, communication, humor and many other things in different places.
Compared to working in Russian companies, I can highlight several things: the pace of gaining professional experience, the ways of planning with my team, not wasting time on meaningless long meetings and the opportunity to discuss problems directly with product owners. All of these factors significantly speed up the development process.
What are you working towards here?
I am working to ensure that our Android application is stable. I am also developing new features in the platform. Development tasks can be completely different; it could be either the development of an interesting new function or new UI elements.
What is the biggest thing you have learned while working at bunq?
While working at bunq, I have learned a lot. The main thing is always thinking about how our work will impact our users. It is always necessary to listen to users whose feedback can often help make the application better and more convenient. We have created a special forum for this, where our own users offer their own ideas for new features, and many of them have already been implemented.
We always have something interesting going on inside the company and we are ready to grow our team with people who are passionate about their work, ready for complex and interesting tasks and, of course, want to enjoy their work!
Egor - Android Developer
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