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1315 nights at FARFETCH

By João Pinto
João Pinto
A developer, team lead and a human being. Did you mean "Kenzo"?
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1315 nights at FARFETCH

It all started on the 24th of August 2015, my first day here at Farfetch. I joined as a .Net Software Developer for the Search team. I had a silver balloon on my desk, a Toshiba laptop, and three weeks of inductions. I already knew some faces from my time at university and I had many work relationships to build ahead of me. In these last three and a half years, I made part of several teams, such as Search, TechNinjas, Code Breaks, Personalisation and, from January 2018, Personalisation Platform. The platform (backend development) was my playground.

Ok, João, so what? What are you writing about?

I am writing because I am about to close my chapter at Farfetch. Yes, I am going to another adventure and wanted to leave my testimony of how my Farfetch experience was.

When I started, I felt my knees tremble. Gladly my team members helped me since my first day and, little by little, work became easier.

From the strategic point of view, Farfetch moved forward with the model of public APIs, and it became necessary to change our portal to start using these APIs instead of our connections to internal services. My team was the first one to launch an API implementation in our Portal on our Product Detail Pages and Product Listing Pages.

In 2016, Farfetch elected Personalisation as a fundamental pillar to our growth and hence, in October that year, a team with the same name was born, which I belonged to from the first day. In the same year, Farfetch had also launched Plug-in, our graduate programme that gives graduates the opportunity to learn and get mentoring with our technology and product people. I was chosen to mentor a 22 year old graduate.

Let me tell you about Personalisation

The personalisation team, 2017

I was involved in many first time projects for Farfetch, such as the features Be the first to shop, and, the one that had the largest visual impact of all, Notification centre. The Notification centre was the most demanding project due to its complexity. The time to build this feature was short, but still, we had to commit and figure out a solution with my colleagues from the Architecture team as well with their Director.

2017 was the year of geodistribution and it was necessary to migrate services to face this necessity. We also got the recently viewed service feature. I took the opportunity to make several different things in this service, such as a pipeline of continuous deployment using solely TeamCity, use docker without an HTTP POST to register entrances while using our tracking tool. Were we able to make all of this? Yes. Interestingly, this was the first project I managed.

The Personalisation Platform

It’s been a year today since I began walking towards being an Engineering Lead. The team started with two people in January and on 21st May we welcomed three colleagues at once. It wasn’t easy at first to manage such rapid growth in my team, but it was a tremendous opportunity for personal growth. I failed a few times during my way, and I made use of those moments to improve myself. I had to adapt to situations and gain people’s trust.

Today we are a team of six engineers and one Product Owner, all components, with good work ethic, oriented to quality and with a good sense of ownership. My five bold colleagues inspire me to be better. Without their feedback, I wouldn’t be who I am today.

The end of a chapter

I joined as a Developer and now I will leave as a Lead. I do not only owe it to my team; I owe it to all the managers I have had, for all they taught me and helped me during this journey, a huge thank you. It was an enormous pleasure to make part of this company, to see us get to the New York Stock Exchange, and arrive at the office every day willing to do what's never been done.

Believe me when I say that with effort and the right attitude, evolution happens. 90% of our success depends only on us.

There's a place for you here!

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