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How to ramp up fast at a big company and have good code quality?

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Senior Software Engineer, Machine Learning [IC4] at Reddit3 months ago

hi,

I just started. I've never been at a company this big. I have worked at a 1000 person place before it shrunk (it grew from 3-500 while I was there) and 65 and 500 person shops.

How do you suggest I ramp up? It's so many people and so many layers of code and tech. I have a good amount of experience in data/ml and also eng. I don't think I'm a 10x engineer but I am pretty proficient at getting things done.

What should my plan be even with holiday slow down coming? People are super nice and I don't feel crazy pressure to ship something rn but I put a lot of pressure on myself and want to do well.

I also know code quality is even more important at bigger companies trying to deal with scale. How do I make sure I can keep up?

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Discussion

(2 comments)
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    Tech Lead/Manager at Meta, Pinterest, Kosei
    3 months ago

    First, I'd highly recommend the masterclass on How To Succeed At A New Team Or Company As A Software Engineer. We talk about ramping up into a new codebase.

    The holiday slowdown is a perfect time to spend more time with your coworkers! I'd especially recommend pair programming a task if you're able to go into the office. A few things that more new people don't do enough:

    • Spend time looking at code review and figure out the culture of team/company. What types of issues are commented on, and who is doing the commenting?
    • I would not assume that code quality is the most important or better at Reddit. Try to figure out where the areas of highest code churn are.
  • 2
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    Software Engineer @ Taro, Pinterest
    3 months ago

    how do you suggest I ramp up? its so many people and so many layers of code and tech. I have a good amount of experience in data/ml and also eng. I don't think I'm a 10x engineer but I am pretty proficient at getting things done.

    I would at least try to land one small code change.

    Try to avoid getting stuck in a state where you are only reading documentation because it can become a form of procrastination. You should have some actionable item that you can bring to a "done" or "completed" state which is why I recommend landing a small code change.

    I would also start a doc for yourself and bullet point any processes that can be improved. These might include:

    1. Slow dev ops process
    2. Slow onboarding practices
    3. Unclear or missing documentation
    4. Inefficient architecture

    Your fresh eyes can be invaluable for identifying bottlenecks that other engineers have adapted to.