8 Questions for Senior Software Dev – Aishah Senin

ADESA NEWS | 9 MAR, 2020

Aishah joined the ADESA UK team in October of 2017 as a Software Developer. Since then, she has moved into the role of Cloud Engineer and has recently been promoted to Senior Software Developer. Aishah’s career roadmap is centred around her becoming a Solutions Architect, and each step she has taken so far at ADESA UK has brought her closer to her goal.


When did you start your career in software development and what attracted you to your field?

I started my career after coming out of university. I received my computer science degree at the University of Liverpool, and working towards that degree confirmed that a career in tech was the right one for me.

My interest in tech stems from when I was 10 — I had my first computer running Windows 98. I liked taking things apart and finding out how they work, so that’s really where my interest in tech comes from.

That curiosity is still with me today; while we get to see the end result and a final product working, I like to see its internal workings and the process in getting it to that final stage.


What’s a day in the life of a developer like?

Mostly coding. But it’s not just coding when it comes to development; there’s a lot of communication needed especially in understanding the business requirements. We can’t code something in isolation — we need an understanding of the business’s goals for a piece of software. I also spend a lot of my day continuously learning, especially if the problem involves a new technology.

My days have changed with working closer to our U.S. teams. Our U.S. counterparts use a very different technological stack when compared to the UK industry and it requires a different way of thinking. In the UK we use an older method of developing software, a type of monolithic application. The U.S. team is using much more cutting-edge methods and technologies. That evolution requires a change in thinking, some research and a bit of re-education.


What’s the best thing about being a developer?

When it comes to working in tech, especially as a developer, you never stop learning. When it comes to technology, everything moves so quickly. For example, a couple of years ago I would never have known about microservices, which is a current technological stack and the next thing I know something else comes along that is a completely new way of hosting and deploying a web application. It never gets boring. If you want to develop better software and do it more efficiently, you have to get into this cycle of constantly learning new things.


First coding language you ever learned?

When I was in college, back in Singapore, I enrolled in a business intelligence diploma. It was a mixture of business and technology and the first programming language we had to learn was Python Turtle. It was a graphical program that moved a turtle around using code and it would draw as it moved. My first assignment was to write the word hello using the turtle. It was quite fun.


Tabs or spaces?

Tabs, definitely tabs. What more can I say?


What’s your favourite dev tool?

I’m quite agnostic when it comes to development tools. When you work on different technological stacks it requires you to use different dev tools. What I like the most currently is Visual Studio Code, the reason being is that it’s very lightweight and versatile with multiple languages.


Throughout your time at ADESA UK, what’s been your biggest professional win?

This is one of the things I did for our parent company KAR Global, while I was Cloud Developer. They had a drawn-out process that tried to reconcile preexisting user accounts with our single sign on client OKTA. Originally, someone was manually resolving these two programs, and it took half a day to finish one account with a lot of back and forth between the UK and the U.S.

I recognized that issue and saw it as an opportunity to automate the process. In order to do that I need to learn a new language called Terraform. At the same time that I was learning this new language, I was learning about how account details were managed by the original program and It was quite a challenge for me. After a few weeks I was able to write some script that automated the process and reduced the time it would take from half a day to just five minutes.


What advice would you give to anyone entering this field?

I would say that it’s a very interesting field. It can be pretty daunting when you’re first faced with the technology and the amount you have to learn, especially when it comes to programming languages. But, if you really have a natural curiosity into the workings of technology, it will carry you far. The great thing is that you can choose from so many disciplines, so you don’t have to be a software developer — you can be an infrastructure engineer, an architect, a security analyst and the list goes on.


Find this interesting? If you’d like to join our IT team here in Chester, we currently have a vacancy for Aishah’s previous position as Cloud Engineer.

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