Guidewire Basecamp: Navigating My Career Journey
Guidewire Basecamp, our graduate and intern program, lets you chart your own course from day one. Our graduates have room to grow, make mistakes, and learn new skills every step of the way. Guidewire's culture supports you to thrive with connections made across the globe and learning opportunities at every corner. Read about Fitri's experience as a Software Consultant and how he has been able to Leap Further in his career!
Chart Your Course
With Guidewire having flexible work hours, the way I spend my days differ based on my comfort and suitability at the time. But more often than not, I would be at home on my laptop at 9:00am, going through my most recent emails in Outlook as well as any relevant messages in Slack. Since I am a Software Consultant, whose work mainly involves 70% development and 30% communication, I would also spend my mornings checking out BitBucket, JIRA, and TeamCity for any development progress and updates from my project team.
As Guidewire is transitioning into its hybrid phase, I try to spend most of my 3 days a week at home, and the remaining 2 in the office, but this changes depending on what I have planned for the day. Here in the Kuala Lumpur Office, we tend to try and avoid heading out during peak hours so that more time can be spent efficiently. Thus, we would usually reach the office at 10.30am, and sometimes go back at 4.00pm. With less time spent in traffic, we are able to be more productive throughout the day.
Although in my case, since I live nearby where it is rarely affected by traffic, oftentimes I would stay at the office longer, since it is a comfortable place to work in. As a Software Consultant, I would occasionally enter Zoom and Team meetings to either meet up with my project team, or to discuss things with the client. But most of my day is dedicated to programming and making changes to our in-house product to reflect the client's needs. Scrum calls with my project team are something to look forward to as they are always fun to be around.
We are encouraged to not work or stay in the office too long, but sometimes I have the itch to get some goals I've personally set for the day completed so that I can sleep peacefully at night. 😅
An Open and Honest Culture
The hybrid working experience has opened up doors to different approaches when performing daily work. Sometimes, working remotely at home alone can be taxing. Without the face-to-face interactions and the occasional "water cooler" talk, prolonged programming can feel overwhelming and stressful. That is why I find going to the office to be a breath of fresh air.
However, spending too much time at the office can be detrimental as well, and so there are times where I feel that I am more productive when I am working at home compared to the office, and my team supports both approaches to how we tackle our work. During the course of my project and training, I met and worked with people from across the globe, including Dublin, Ontario, Hawaii, Bengaluru, California, Melbourne, and many more.
It is always fascinating to learn about their lifestyles, and at the same time see that they are also like-minded people with similar interests and goals. During our meetings, we always respect and try to find an overlap between time zones so that we are not too greatly affected by the difference.
Learning New Skills Every Step of the Way
Be adventurous! Exploring new things can be scary at times, since they sometimes involve leaving our comfort zones. But, one could argue that breaking through your comfort zone would ultimately lead you to having more room for comfort. The more things we try out earlier, the easier and more diverse it will be to navigate through our career in the future!
We don't have to start everything with a bang. Sometimes, trying out new things can be as impactful as taking in a different responsibility in the project, or as minor as testing out the office's coffee machine! In my opinion, failures are natural and acceptable, what is more essential is that we learn and grow from them.
Advice to a New Guidewire Graduate
One piece of advice I would give is to accept work as a part of your lifestyle, rather than seeing it as a chore. Eventually, you will come to love it more. Unlike time spent in academia, there is no longer any scroll to hunt. The end goal instead is to live a successful and happy life, and the way to achieve this is to accept work as a part of you.
It is important to focus on your work-life balance as well as build rapport with the people in your workplace/project. It is definitely more enjoyable to be working with friends rather than just colleagues. Another important thing that some people disregard would be to have a proper office setup, be it your home office or the company's office. Make sure you have enough desk space to work with, equip enough monitors to ease between tab/window navigations, and a well ventilated room to keep yourself comfortable at all times.
It's a good thing that you don't have to worry about this when working at the office, as the office desks are well-equipped. Another extra piece of advice would be to seek professional development in your time in Guidewire. Thankfully, Guidewire provides hours for us to work on our own professional development, aside from just working on our projects. Do seek out your manager to find out more about the common paths that graduates take in pursuit of up-skilling themselves!
Memorable Moments with Guidewire Basecamp
Highlighting something fun I've done at Guidewire, without a doubt, it would have to be when I went to Colorado to participate in the Delivery Services Meeting in 2022! As someone who rarely goes overseas, I was more than thrilled to be given the opportunity to visit the States. It was amazing to get to meet the people whom I would usually just see virtually through Zoom in the flesh!
It was great to be able to meet up with those who took the Foundation Training at the same time with me, Chris from Ireland, my training instructor, Scott and Roman, those working on a separate project, Luka and Budhi, as well as my own project team!
Attending the meeting also gave me a broader perspective of the company, as well as learn more about its current product updates and future direction through the talks and forums being held during the duration. I have also gotten the opportunity to get to know my Kuala Lumpur workmates better, who had to endure together the 30 hour travel twice, to-and-from the US. Our struggles of coping with jet lag throughout the trip will be remembered. 😂
Ready to leap further? We're hiring! Check out our current intern and graduate roles here.