Being a developer is challenging work but lots of fun because it lets me participate in each part of a functionality life cycle: design, coding, testing, and documenting. For developers, that is one of the most exciting things to do: to create something from scratch and be able to see it coming to life.
Employee spotlight: Meet Nico Navarro
For software developers, the solution is never straightforward. As a self-taught developer, Nico Navarro is used to thinking open-endedly about problems and empowering his team members with the ability to exercise their voices. Working remotely for a small startup requires a broad set of skills, and Nico understands that independence is uniquely powerful.
Nico Navarro works at SafePaaS, on the software development “ninja” team. In recognition of his work, we awarded Nico with our “Ace Innovator Award” last quarter. We spoke with Nico about working at SafePaaS and here is what he had to say.
“The best thing about Nicolás is that he can understand
any problem and find a solution quickly.” Renzo Garcia
Describe the culture of SafePaaS
SafePaaS is a multicultural and multidisciplinary company that puts the product in the center of the stage and, therefore, the customer. Every effort is directed and meant to help customers solve their problems and make their lives easier. We give our best in each area of our company to help people build the most successful version of their businesses.
How long have you been with SafePaaS?
I’ve been with SafePaaS since October 2020. I began as a contractor for about 9 months, and then, in July 2021, I started as a full-time employee.
How would you describe your work?
I work as a developer for the Engineering team. I have been involved mainly in developing new enhancements to existing features within the SafePaaS platform. It’s challenging work but lots of fun because it lets me participate in each part of a functionality life cycle: design, coding, testing, and documenting. For developers, that is one of the most exciting things to do: to create something from scratch and be able to see it coming to life.
“Nico leads with expertise and collaborates with positivity.
I am so grateful to have Nico as a colleague and friend,
and I know that his contributions will continue to make
a significant impact on our team and our work.” Suhas Palekar
How have you developed professionally while working with SafePaaS?
I started my journey at SafePaaS as an intern developer, having a self-taught developer background. Within these past two years and a few months, I have been promoted to Junior and then a Developer. I try to keep up to date with the latest technologies by taking online courses, but I have been learning a lot directly from my technical leaders and colleagues at SafePaaS. It´s a great team, and everyone has something to add to my professional knowledge.
What best advice can you give someone who wants to work for SafePaaS?
My advice for newcomers would be: Take your time to get to know all the different aspects of SafePaaS and use the great team available, don’t hesitate to ask for help. SafePaaS is a great company to work for, with a super challenging environment. We are constantly moving toward the next goal, which can sometimes be overwhelming. But we have a great team that can help take those first steps nicely and smoothly to generate the space to contribute to the company and the SafePaaS family.
What is your day-to-day life like as a DEVELOPER at SafePaaS?
My day as a developer starts with an Engineering team meeting in which we discuss assignments and their progress. After that, I start working on those assignments. Based on each requirement, sometimes I can have complementary meetings with specific members of the Engineering or Services teams to discuss more detailed aspects of the design of a given development or to agree on the functionality to deliver. Also, depending on the current requirement stage, my work can alternate between coding, testing, or documenting. So, out of 8 daily hours, 2 or 3 can be destined for meetings and 5-6 for more development-specific tasks. When working on bugs, time spent on an assignment can be one or two days but in the case of enhancements/new features, projects can last from one or two weeks up to a month.
How is your role at SafePaaS different than other places you’ve worked?
As I said before, I started working for SafePaaS as an intern, so I had little work experience in the programming industry. I worked mainly as a freelance developer, so I was used to working on my own. So being part of a big work team is the main difference between SafePaaS and my previous work experiences.
Can you share a few details about your favorite part of your job?
What have been your most significant achievements working for SafePaaS?
My most significant achievement was developing whole new modules from scratch. I participated as one of the main contributors in the iAccess module redesign (Enterprise iAccess - Lifecycle Management), Enterprise Access Certification, and Enterprise Role Manager while being a Jr. developer.
Who inspires you the most within SafePaaS and why?
My main inspiration within SafePaaS is my direct manager, Ana. She is a great technical leader and a great problem solver. I learn a lot, on a daily basis, from her technical skills and her thinking process. I’m very fortunate to have had the chance to work with such an accomplished professional.
What’s unique about working for SafePaaS?
For me, as a developer, what is unique at SafePaaS is the possibility of working in a multicultural company constantly striving for growth. There is plenty to do within SafePaaS in the programming aspect, and that is what most developers, me included, want to learn, create, and use our abilities to help fix/solve real-world problems.
Describe how you’ve grown professionally since you started working at SafePaaS.
As I mentioned, I managed to jump from Intern to Junior Developer and now Developer. I have been increasing my exposition to more complex issues and problems, and the fact that I could achieve/solve situations that not so long ago appeared impossible greatly depicts my professional growth.
What is the most difficult challenge you’ve experienced working for at SafePaaS?
The most difficult challenge for me was working for almost six months without any technical leadership while still being a junior developer. Between July 2021, and January 2022, I worked on a very challenging project for an important client that was a huge success.
What best advice can you give someone who wants to work for SafePaaS?
Mostly what I already covered in question number 5. But to summarize, my advice would be: Take your time to understand SafePaaS and use the great team surrounding you. Don´t hesitate to ask for help. Everyone is glad to give you a helping hand.
What’s the most exciting thing you are working on right now?
In the last few weeks, I have been involved in implementing a new technology to manage workflows: Flows4Apex. This feature will have a major impact on the overall functionality of our platform both in the short and mid-term.
What do you like to do in your free time?
I love to do CrossFit, read comic books, listen to music, play guitar, go to concerts, and spend time with the people I care for.
Do you have a favorite business book(s) or podcast(s) that help you keep current on your skills and technology?
I’m not a fan of podcasts, but I follow a couple of great developers on Instagram that post some great content. I also try to keep current on tech topics by reading blogs, mostly Medium.
The developers/communities that Nico follow on Instagram are:
Lydia Hallie (@theavocoder), Jonatan Ariste (@codearock), Wes Bos (@wesbos), Albiona Hoti (@albicodes), David Malan (@davidjmalan), freeCodeCamp.org (@freecodecamp)