In conversation with Polina, software developer at Soloplan
Hello Polina, you work as a software developer in the development department and are the only woman in your department in Kempten. How is that for you?
Up to now, I have not noticed any difference. Everyone is very friendly to me and I have never become aware that anyone treated me differently than other colleagues. If I ever need help, everyone is very willing to support me–there is a very good atmosphere within the team. Initially, that was a somewhat strange feeling for me, since I am from Italy, where there are significant differences between men and women.
Why do you think the area of software development is almost exclusively a male domain?
I have been asking myself that question for a long time. Many of my male friends are software developers, but none of my female friends are. When I was in university, there was a total of two women in the entire course. There seems to be a predominant cliché that being a software developer is a man’s job–which is not true! I think being a software developer is a wonderful job for both men and women. Many people probably mix up software development with IT support and believe that, in everyday work, they would need to tinker with PCs and lay cables.
You studied computer science in Italy. How did you become aware of Soloplan?
My family has already been here in Germany for a long time and I visited Kempten for Christmas once. As chance would have it, we passed by the Berliner Platz and, at the construction site for Soloplan City, I saw a recruiting poster for new employees. As I had already been considering moving closer to my family, I just went ahead and applied. And that is how I came to Soloplan within a month.
What are your daily tasks as a developer and which of them do you enjoy the most?
In general, I enjoy my job very much–I do not have a favourite task, but I enjoy the diversity of the different tasks in particular. I am currently working on Web development and contribute to various projects; right now, those are the Soloplan products CarLo® inHUB and inSCAN.
What does your daily work look like?
I usually meet with my team leader every two weeks to answer open questions or discuss topics where I am not getting anywhere. Otherwise, I work very independently and can organise my work as I see fit. At the same time, I also need to make sure I stay “up to date” and train myself further in all areas of software development.
What makes Soloplan a special employer to you?
First of all, I enjoy being able to arrange my work as I please. No one tells me exactly how I am to work–I have experienced the opposite of that as well. I think appointments are also managed very well at Soloplan. There are no deadlines in the sense of “it needs to be finished yesterday”, but instead, we jointly discuss how much time a project actually requires. This is a great interplay between the employer and the employees.
Is there a project in your career that you remember particularly well? If yes, why so?
There are very many projects I am proud of (laughs). But, only a short time ago, I had a formative experience. An old customer for whom I had developed a programme 20 years ago called me. At first, I thought he had dialled the wrong number–but no, he wanted me to make a change to his programme. I was very surprised he was still using the programme after 20 years. To that, he replied: “Of course, why not? After all, it works perfectly!” That was really a great surprise and it made me very happy.
How do you balance out your daily work in your free time?
I am very active and try to do a lot of sports to balance out the daily work: fitness, swimming, kickboxing and jogging. I also found friends here in Kempten very quickly with whom I enjoy drinking coffee or going out to eat, hiking or going to concerts or clubs. In private, as well, I place great importance on further training. For example, I am currently taking part in a language course in order to brush up on my English, and I am also taking part in a course on the topic of Big Data, which is something I find very exciting. Of course, I also try to spend as much time as possible with my family.
Which qualities should someone who wants to work in your area of expertise have?
To work as a software developer, being curious is essential. You should also be willing to think outside the box. It is no use to deal with the subject matters superficially. In contrast–it is essential that you understand problems and then delve deeply into a subject in order to find solutions.
What would you recommend to anyone interested in working for Soloplan?
I think there is no real advice since you can’t go wrong with Soloplan. Just be natural and be yourself–then, you will be happy at Soloplan. There is no use pretending.
Would you also like to become part of Soloplan?
Then take a look at our vacancies – we look forward to receiving your application!