Monday, January 18, 2016

New challenges ahead at Microsoft

Seven years ago, I finished my Computer Science degree at the University. I immediately started working as a web developer and consultant focusing on EPiServer development at a consultancy called Objectware (now part of Itera). It didn't take me long to realize that the place to be if you were into EPiServer was a small consultancy called Epinova, and so I transitioned as soon as the opportunity presented itself. I've worked at Epinova ever since, for about five and a half years.

My time at Epinova has been absolutely amazing. We were approximately 20 developers when I joined and the company has more than doubled within my time there. At such a small company, you always know what everyone is working on, talking to management is simply a tap on the shoulder of the person you wish to speak to, and you're often given responsibilities and opportunities far outside of your comfort zone. It has the start-up atmosphere combined with the security of a larger company, and it was the perfect place for me to grow.

When I started working at Epinova, I was an average web developer. Even though my technical skills were not top-notch, I managed to deliver allright in the beginning due to the fact that I was a fast and structured learner. I immediately sensed that something was different though. For the first time, I was surrounded by developers who truly cared about the code they were writing. They wanted the best for their customers, quality always came first. And I was feeding off the energy, constantly growing as a developer, slowly figuring out which areas I needed to excel at and which would land me the most interesting projects. I was given the freedom to deal with customers the way I felt was right, I was given time to focus on side projects and I was trusted to make the right decisions. This shaped me both as a person and as a developer, and gave me the confidence I needed to go the extra mile.

Unfortunately, I slowly started losing interest in our main area of expertise: EPiServer. I ignored this petrifying feeling by digging deeper into other areas such as Microsoft Dynamics CRM, Octopus Deploy, Azure, E-Commerce, and general Research & Development tasks. Inevitably though, I reached a point where I could no longer ignore the fact that EPiServer just didn't do it for me anymore. I slowly started thinking about Microsoft, I'd heard stories about the Developer Experience team and the work they were doing. Could that be my next move?

Today, I am superexcited to announce that the Developer Experience team at Microsoft, in fact, will be my next move. From the beginning of April, I will be their new ALM (Application Lifecycle Management) Solution Specialist. This is an amazing opportunity I'm very grateful to have received and I suspect there are plenty of challenges waiting for me ahead. I've already had the honor of meeting the team, a loud gang filled with laughter and knowledge. I can't wait to pick their brains!

Until then, I'm going to enjoy two quiet months at home with my daughter. Well, not completely quiet. I'll be giving a talk at Girl Geek Dinner Oslo on February 3rd about how I spend my maternity leave continously learning new skills. And of course, I'll spend some time reading up Visual Studio, Visual Studio Team Services, Visual Studio Code etc.

Did I mention how excited I am about all of this?

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