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Switch companies or team?

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Entry-Level Software Engineer [E3] at Metaa year ago

I’ve been at meta for about 6 months now as a new graduate and my team recently got re-orged. The project of the new team is very uninteresting to me and honestly I realized that I’ve chosen an “easy” work team.

I recently got advice that I need to do more meaningful work such that my skills develop and I can create credibility. I don’t think the work on my current team or the new team makes me excited or even happy in anyway.

I would love to explore the metaverse org as I was heavily involved in VR/AR development work in college.however, I’d have to wait until July to start this process+ this would mean I moved 3 teams in 1 year implying I spent more time ramping up than doing meaningful work.

I’m also considering switching companies. I am able to secure interviews from a few companies that seem interesting to me.

Does anyone have any suggestions ?

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    Tech Lead @ Robinhood, Meta, Course Hero
    a year ago

    Sorry to hear this - There's so much turbulence now with the layoffs, hiring freeze, and all the spaghetti surrounding Meta.

    I have several thoughts here:

    1. If you're going to switch teams, do it now - As an E3, you have ~1.5 years left to get promoted to E4, which isn't a ton of time. If you can switch in the next 1-2 months, you have a solid shot at getting the promo in the next PSC. If you switch in summer, things will get rough as you need to onboard and then grow to E4 in what is likely less than a year (you also want to avoid the stress of red zone).
    2. Try not to switch companies if you can - Meta is far from perfect, but it's generally one of the best places in the world for a software engineer to start their career. It's easy to naturally pick up a lot of good engineering habits there, and you don't need a ton of scope to go from E3 -> E4.
    3. I'm skeptical of Metaverse - I worked on Portal, another moonshot hardware Meta play that sort of ended up going nowhere. These projects tend to be pretty thrashy as it goes against Meta's "software-based" DNA, and product direction is extremely difficult. I'm sure it doesn't help that the product is getting lambasted by the media as well. I can see this being a very stressful environment for an E3 (Portal was too stressful for me, which is why I left).
    4. Optimize for the team - As I talk about in this video, product space is generally overrated when it comes to picking teams. Great teammates can make a more "boring" product feel fun. Unsupportive teammates can make an "exciting" product space feel unfun. As a junior engineer, your future is overwhelmingly crafted by the people around you as you should optimize for learning.

    All that being said, if you have a truly fundamental problem with how all of Meta operates, switching jobs could be the right move. Just keep in mind that your growth will be at standstill for a while as you grind through interviews, figure out your final offer, and then onboard into a new team and company.