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Backend Ruby Developer

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When I turned 30, I switched careers and learned the basics of web development at Le Wagon, a programming bootcamp which was created in Paris (🇫🇷 France) and now has many locations around the world.

I really enjoyed what I've learned there, especially the Ruby programming language and working with Git. This solidified my belief that I wished to become a proper developer, with a focus on the backend side.

🇫🇷1st experience (2017-2022): epicery

My first work experience was at epicery, a french startup created in late 2015 that provides an online marketplace to independent food shops (greengrocers, butchers, fishmongers, etc.). I first started as an intern, and then was hired as a full-time employee 6 months later. I spent a total of 5 and a half years at the company.

During that experience, I've learned a lot under the mentorship of the CTO, who was himself heavily invested in the codebase during the first few years of the company as our tech team was quite small at the time (less than 5 developers).

Here are some of the technologies or 3rd party services I got familiar with:

  • the SQL language (PostgresSQL in particular), which I had the opportunity to work with on a regular basis – not just through the ActiveRecord ORM – when implementing views using the scenic gem or writing queries in the GUI of a dashboarding/BI tool (metabase)
  • the Solidus e-commerce framework, which provides a comprehensive collection of gems to cover both the core business logic and the various "frontends" (API, admin, store frontend)
  • various 3rd party APIs from vendors such as Adyen (payment processing), Mailchimp (email / marketing automation), Brevo (formerly Sendinblue; email/sms automation)

As our team grew to reach 12+ developers, my role became multifaceted:

  • quick prototyping of new API integrations
  • performance investigations to fix N+1 queries reported by the APM (Appsignal); I also learned how to track down inefficient Ruby code using flame graphs for cases where database optimisations were not enough
  • release and deployment management
  • mentoring new team members when they needed guidance as I had the most experience with the codebase and the Git workflow (rebasing)

🇨🇭2nd experience (2023-present): Gold Avenue

I relocated to Switzerland in January 2023 after having found an opportunity at Gold Avenue, an e-commerce website whose goal is to disrupt the European precious metals market by aiming at providing a superior user experience compared to the usual industry standards, as well as offering differentiating features such as the secure storage of our customer's assets.

The tech stack I'm working with is very similar to that of epicery. The main challenge I've encountered in this new position is that my coworkers are more senior on average compared to my former colleagues, meaning I needed to adjust my reviewing skills in order to keep up with denser diffs and/or more pull requests to review.