Each summer we welcome a couple of interns to join the team here at Administrate, usually on the technical team. They arrive in June, work until September, get paid a salary, and are treated as full team members with real responsibility for real projects.
If you’re interested in an internship position at Administrate, make sure you check in with us in the early part of each year when we’re interviewing candidates for the upcoming summer.
In what felt like a fortnight, I’ve just finished my three month internship in Administrate. The time I’ve spent here has been some of the most valuable of my life, and the skills I’ve learned will be invaluable for my future career.
One thing that struck me as surprising is how closely Administrate as an organisation sticks to their core values. In particular, transparency is something that is inherent within the company. Employees are constantly kept up to date with every aspect of the business, from company finances to their daily performance.
Another point that was handled very well was keeping employees up to date with how their work affects the everyday working lives of hundreds of clients around the world. Every bug fix and every feature is more than just writing code, it’s solving a real world problem for real people who rely on your software to get their day to day work done. Feedback, whether good or bad, was passed to employees and it was often great motivation to hear of a client impressed at the level of support they received.
Each piece of feedback was used as a learning exercise, and in particular negative comments would prompt a discussion on how we could improve our service. Constant reevaluation of our methods is what I believe ultimately leads to the high satisfaction rate from customers, and seeing a flood of positive comments come in after work was completed provided great motivation.
Over the course of my time here I worked on a range of different technologies, and was helped by some of the most patient and informative colleagues you could hope for. Just three months ago I couldn’t have imagined finding even a single bug in a large code base but by the end of the first day I had submitted my first pull request, which was merged into the production code base the next day. Three months later I’ve had over thirty contributions across three different production code bases consisting of a variety of frameworks, languages, and libraries.
About half of my time at Administrate consisted of a project using AngularJS which entailed rebuilding the customer facing control panel. When I was looking for an internship at the start of the year, I never would have thought that I’d be working on something so major just months later. Despite spending much of my time with my head buried in Angular documentation, there’s an incredible sense of gratification in looking back and realising just how much I’ve learned. Things that would’ve seemed impossible a couple of months ago now seem trivial and with help from my colleagues I now feel vastly more confident in my abilities.
Writing code and fixing bugs, although important, definitely didn’t make up the majority of my time here. A large portion of the internship was focussed on education, and taking time to read and learn new skills was actively encouraged. In fact, each day we were given time out to focus on furthering our education. This was done in the form of was educational videos from TeamTreehouse or reading the assigned books (Code Complete and Getting Things Done). With such a major emphasis on bettering yourself, I’ve learned a countless number of new skills and improved several existing ones ranging from version control and time management to relational databases and teamwork.
However, despite having access to all of these resources, there really is no substitute for having a team of patient and intelligent colleagues who are always willing to offer valuable tips and help with even the most trivial of issues. There were countless times where I required help, and each time it was given to me almost straight away and without question. Asking for assistance and feedback was easier at Administrate than at university, and considering that should be one of the primary objectives of any university, I think that speaks volumes about the team that they have.
My summer was much more enjoyable than it otherwise would have been without spending it at Administrate. I’d highly encourage anyone who is studying Computing Science or a related degree to apply - I think you’d struggle to find a more rewarding experience elsewhere.