My Softwire Internship – Jon

10 December 2011, by

JonI started my internship at Softwire following my third year studying engineering at the University of Oxford. I arrived with almost no programming experience – only the material that Softwire had asked me to read in preparation for the summer, and a small amount of Matlab and C as part of my course. I wanted to use the internship both for experience, but also to learn what working in software was actually like.

During my internship I’ve worked on three different projects, all very different in scale, technology and structure. My first project was an internal app for Softwire itself, rather than a commercial one – the idea was to increase company productivity by making employees’ personal development records and yearly appraisal much more streamlined. It was a .NET MVC app written in C#, and we had two interns as the sole developers – with a couple of more experienced people keeping an eye on things, and giving us the support we needed when we encountered problems.

I then started a new project, another .NET MVC app but this time a commercial one which I helped create from scratch. Finally, I spent the last few weeks of my internship working on one of Softwire’s largest projects, Reservwire – this was a hugely different experience as the project was vast in comparison, but I gained a really interesting insight as to how such a large project operates.

One of Softwire’s stated goals is employee satisfaction, and they do a brilliant job making the company a great place to work. The atmosphere in the office is really laid back, and although everyone works hard there’s always time for a quick game of table tennis, 90s gaming session or an after-work pint at the pub. There’s a generous morale budget (which is used to the full), and regular morale events such as beer tasting, the company picnic and film nights.

Knowledge in the office is pretty deep – if you ask around the office you’re almost guaranteed to find an expert on any given technology, making it a great place just to learn. In my short time here I’ve come into contact with C#, .NET, VB, ASP, JavaScript, SQL, Java and more – most for the first time. Although I won’t deny there have been some frustrating moments, I think my problem solving skills are significantly better than when I arrived here – and it’s really rewarding getting something working after spending a couple of hours on it!

Although I haven’t decided yet whether I want to work in software, if I do eventually choose to I would love it to be at Softwire – I can’t imagine there are many places who take such good care of their employees.

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Categories: Recruitment, Softwire


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