A day in the life of a Software Developer at Lhasa Limited
09 December 2022
Read time: less than 10 minutes
Hola! My name is Jessica Magallanes-Castaneda. I am originally from Mexico and moved to the UK in 2015 to pursue my MSc and PhD in Computer Science at The University of Sheffield. I am very happy to have joined Lhasa in May 2022, keep reading on to find out why!
I work within the Software team at Lhasa as a Software Developer, currently working on the Nexus project. My activities revolve around software development mainly in Java – which include fixing bugs, writing tests, and implementing new features. We work using Agile methodologies, so each sprint, which lasts around 2 - 3 weeks, I am assigned a new user story to work on.
In addition to my software developer duties, Lhasa allows me to invest time in my professional development and continuous learning. For instance, I am currently completing a course for a Java certification, and I have completed technical courses on Spring Boot, Maven, SWT, and JUnit. However, it does not stop there, Lhasa also cares about my wellbeing so much so that I am part of the yoga club and rock band at work.
One of the many benefits at Lhasa is that they offer hybrid working, I can choose between working from home or at the office, so I tend to go into the office 1 - 3 times a week. Here is my typical day as a Software Developer from our office in Leeds.
7.00am - 9.00am
Train to Leeds. I catch my 40-minute train from Sheffield to Leeds and get to the office at 9.00am.
If I am working from home, I usually go for a run and take a shower before starting work.
Breakfast and emails. When I arrive at the Leeds office, I like to grab a cup of tea, some fruit, a granola bar, or a muffin. (What? All that for free? Yes, it’s free and delicious!)
Whilst I have my cup of tea, I turn my computer on, go through my emails and plan what I will be doing for the day.
Stand-up meeting. My team and I will review our scrum board; everyone gives an update on the progress of their assigned user stories and what tasks they will be working on the day. It is also a good time to check whether we need help from each other so that we can work collaboratively.
10.15am - 12.00pm
Code and collaborative work. I usually don’t have any meetings at this time so I continue with my programming tasks from the previous day. This involves designing or writing code for a new feature, debugging, trying to understand an issue, testing, refactoring code, and reviewing pull requests, amongst others.
If I or someone in the team is struggling with a programming issue or simply wants to work collaboratively, we will initiate a developers’ call (aka dev call), where we share our ideas and explore solutions together.
12.00pm - 1.00pm
It is my lunchtime. The kitchen in the office is spacious and nice. I enjoy eating there whilst I have interesting conversations with my colleagues. Some of us have recently started a lunch club where we bring food from home to share - it feels like we are having a big family meal!
1.00pm - 3.00pm
Retrospective and sprint planning meetings. We have a retrospective meeting where we review our work and reflect on what could be improved every two weeks. Then, we define actions to move on to the next sprint. In the sprint planning meeting which includes the Product Owner, we will prioritise the tasks to do regarding our members’ demands and product vision.
If there are no meetings scheduled, I continue where I left off with my programming tasks before lunch.
3.00pm - 3.10pm
Break. Usually at this time, I will get a hot chocolate from the kitchen and talk to people in the hallway - just to clear my head and relax for a bit.
3.10pm - 4.30pm
More coding. I usually do not have many meetings at this time - so I continue with my programming tasks for the rest of the day, put my headphones on and let the code flow.
Lhasa band rehearsal. Some Thursdays, six other colleagues and I come to the office’s auditorium to rehearse rock covers. I am the lead singer of the band, along with two amazing bass players, two drummers, and two guitarists. We are known as the Lhasa band!
Train back home. If I am not rehearsing with the band, I catch the train at 5.15pm. Otherwise, I stay and rehearse in the office until 7.00pm.
Time for dinner. I arrive back home in Sheffield, cook a nice meal and watch TV. As you might have noticed, I love music, so occasionally I try to squeeze in some piano practice after my dinner, to start winding down before sleeping at around 11.00pm.
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