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At Reward Gateway, our Engineering team are responsible for developing and shipping huge, feature-rich products and tools for our platform; scalable technical solutions enabling thousands of companies to engage over five million employees daily. In this series, we sit down with a few of our superstar Engineers - from RG Newbies to Developers who have been with us for over a decade - to find out what it's like to work at Reward Gateway, what inspires them as Engineers and what up-and-coming Engineers need to know to score a fantastic career and make their own world a better place to work.

Ayan wanted to work somewhere that provided a good culture, a good agile team to work in, and a place to collaborate and build something good together. In this short interview, he explains how he found that at RG.

Hi Ayan! What are you working on at Reward Gateway?

I work on the Small Business team at Reward Gateway and our Employee Comms team. I started about three years ago as a senior engineer and got promoted to Lead Engineer after a year or so.

Was that something you always wanted to do? Did you always want to lead a team in engineering?

I’d always had it in mind, sometime in the future, that I’d be leading teams, but I never had the courage or opportunity to do so. Taking a leadership role and trying something you didn't do before is a bit scary. But at Reward Gateway, we had some good role models to learn from and get encouragement and support. That allowed it to happen.

What made you want to join RG in the first place?

I wasn’t actually looking for a job when I joined Reward Gateway! I joined because of a referral. My manager from a previous job had joined RG about six months before I did, and he sent me a referral and said some nice things about the company. I researched the usual Glassdoor type of websites online and read some more nice things. 

The first interview usually gives you a good impression of how the company is going to be culture-wise, and that’s what kept me interested from the moment I spoke to somebody on the hiring team. I wanted to work at a place that had a good culture, a good agile team to work in, and a place to collaborate and build something good together with less stressful environments and fewer deadlines. RG seems to be the right place.

It sounds like you’ve had a lot of opportunities to learn on your job and doing the work. Is that something you’ve found?

Yes, certainly. That was always Reward Gateway’s priority; to allow time for engineers to learn and, outside of our day-to-day work, improve themselves professionally and personally. 

And that is always one of our discussions in our one-to-one — personal development goals. When we talk to our direct reports, we encourage them to learn and grow.

Many of the team have been raving about Pluralsight [the online tech skills learning platform]. Is that one of the benefits you’ve been able to use?

Yes, Pluralsight is one of our recent benefits. To be honest, I had Pluralsight and used it personally about a year ago, so I was excited to see it now covered by Reward Gateway so I can continue my learnings there. And I must say, the Book Benefit is my favourite. I learnt about it as soon as I joined and immediately started ordering my favourite books, and I still do every month or so.

Is your team all based with you? How do you collaborate?

We’re quite international, actually! I’m in London, we have one Product Manager in Hungary, three team members in Bulgaria, and our designer is in Portugal.  All of our meetings are online, and we use many collaboration tools that RG provides. It’s never been an issue doing so; the team is amazing, and they communicate with each other very well — so I’m happy to be part of the team too.

Do you mind running me through what your day-to-day work looks like? What sort of tools and coding languages are you working with?

Of course! We have been working with PHP dominantly as a programming language in the backend, but in the front end, we have the usual ones: JavaScript and React, as well as some older code with jQuery and traditional JS. 

Several migration projects are underway at Reward Gateway, moving away from older systems for newer and more modern ones.  This means developers can have fun developing and using these new tools. With this, we can attract new engineers and everybody who wants to use new tools! There are at least four or five different work streams to migrate things to more modern standards.

That’s something I hadn’t really thought about; modernising not just for security and scalability but also for making it more fun for the devs. Is that right?

​​Yes, we really care about the developer experience at RG and keeping that experience good and challenging. We provide tools and put development environments, editors and tools on our laptops to make developers’ life easier and more fun. 

Using more modern tools and frameworks also helps with our developer experience. People are more likely to know the products, and when you need help, you can usually find helpful discussions both within your team and online.

Finally, let’s go back to a classic. What would you want them to know if you were interviewing someone to join your team at RG tomorrow?

Well, when we are hiring people, we are looking for "cultural add" — sometimes even more than technical skills. For example, if someone is applying for a senior position, their skills might not always be to the level we are looking for, but we hire that person because we believe they will be good for the team. They will learn and improve to get to the technical level we are looking for in a very efficient manner. The most important thing is the ability to learn, adapt, and be curious.

Inspired? We’re always looking to grow our Engineering teams to work with more great people like Ayan, to help us in our mission of making the world a better place to work. If you’re ready for a new challenge in your engineering career, regardless of what stage you’re at, we’d love to hear from you. Check out our open roles here. Or, find more inspiration and follow what we’re up at rg.co/lifeatrg

Catrin Lewis

As Head of Global Engagement and Internal Communications, Catrin's main focus is to make Reward Gateway a better place to work. Using the Engagement Bridge™ model, she drives our mission, purpose and values while adding sparkle and creativity to our internal communications.

Head of Global Engagement and Internal Communications