Apprenticeship as an IT specialist for application development

Python is not just an animal to you? C is more than just a letter? Then you are just right for an apprenticeship as an IT specialist for application development at Soloplan, just like our apprentice Nico E.!

Hi Nico, you are an apprentice in the third year of training. What else should we know about you?

I am 21 years old, have been working here at Soloplan for two and a half years and will finish my apprenticeship in July 2020.

What are your tasks at Soloplan?

In a nutshell: I optimise and develop programmes.
Most of the time I get these tasks from our chief development officer and from colleagues in the development department, if they have requests for a special programme or certain features they want to have implemented. For example, I am currently working on an import-export tool for database exports. By the way, Soloplan predominantly uses the C# programming language.

My other tasks also include the testing of our developed programmes. In this process, we check the source code and document if the implemented features are functioning properly and no errors occur.

Why did you decide on this apprenticeship?

This is no particularly surprising answer, but the subject of technology has always interested me; whether it was hardware or software. I wanted to know exactly what is behind a computer, how a programme works and how I can even develop something like that myself.

What are the differences to the management assistant in IT systems? Wouldn’t this apprenticeship have been suitable for you as well?

The management assistant in IT systems if far more commercially oriented. In that job, your task is to advice costumers on the appropriate software. I for my part am more interested in the technical aspects.

What does your typical everyday work look like at the moment?

As you would expect from a developer, the first thing I do in the morning is getting a coffee. We work with the development environment Visual Studio. As soon as I have started that programme, I open my current project. At the moment, that is the import-export tool. On the day before, I already prepare a list with all the tasks I have planned for the day. That helps me a lot to work through my projects in a structured way. I regularly discuss my progress with our chief development officer, who can always give me helpful tips.

Was there ever a project that you particularly liked?

I especially like my current task, the import-export tool. With this project, I tried a different concept than usual. With MVVM you separate individual software components from each other. The advantage is that the individual components can be tested independently of each other and at the same time the surface can be replaced at any time. It is really exciting to be able to try out concepts other than usual.

Another project which I really like, although it is not necessarily one of my actual tasks, is the apprentice meeting. We have been organising regular training courses for all IT specialists for application development for the last three months. The goal of those meetings is that new apprentices who do not have as much development experience can benefit from the knowledge of those in their third year. At the beginning we discussed topics like class and object, with time we deepened the topics further.

Is this apprenticeship also suitable for people who have very little knowledge in programming?

Yes, of course. Although, you should have mathematical skills and talent for logical thinking, you do not need prior knowledge of a programming language. Your apprenticeship place and the vocational school will teach you this knowledge.

As an IT specialist for application development the development department is not the only department you will work in. Which other department did you get to know here?

I was in the IT department for one year. I also found that very exciting, since you get to know all the technical background there. Especially in a software company the topics you get to know in the IT are very extensive. This ranges from the setup of the server structure to the network configuration. My next stop will be the quality assurance department.

Every three weeks, you go to the vocational school in Kempten. What does your timetable look like?

In every apprenticeship year, we have different subjects. This includes, for example, IT-Technical Systems in which you initially get to know hardware components, later on also server virtualisation or firewalls. In the subject “Networked Systems” we learn the configuration of network structures. My favourite subject is Application and Programming, where we learn the programming language Java. What I like very much about the vocational school is that we only rarely have the typical frontal teaching and instead are allowed to program independently in free work.

What are your plans for the future?

After my apprenticeship, I want to do my vocational baccalaureate diploma at the higher vocational school and then I want to study computer science, probably even in Kempten. In that case, working here as a working student would be great.

What makes Soloplan a good apprenticeship company?

It is a lot of fun to work here, because of the incredibly good and cooperative environment in the Soloplan team. From the get-go everyone was very friendly and I felt welcome immediately. Soloplan also offers a very international perspective because of the branch offices in Poland and South Africa. As an apprentice you can also, if you want to, spend a few months working at the branch offices outside of Germany to get to know the work culture there and the country.

Next week the last interview will be released, which completes our apprentice interview series.
Would you like to know more? Then inform yourself about the apprenticeship for the management assistant in IT systems or the management assistant in marketing communication.

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