Beyond the Job: BookedOut Engineering Team

Our “Beyond the Job” blog series gives you insight into what it’s like to work at Shiftgig. Learn about different positions at the company, our culture and more!

Today, we’re speaking with not one, but TWO of our BookedOut by Shiftgig engineering team members in Chicago, Sohel Mansuri and Matt Pis! Sohel is our Android developer and Matt is our iOS developer.

How long have you been on the Engineering team?

S: I’ve been part of the BookedOut engineering team for almost two years. I started working for BookedOut right after graduating from DePaul University in June of 2015.

M: I have been with the engineering team for almost two years. I’m one of the people who shared the tiny room full of people and monitors when BookedOut first became a company.

What’s your favorite part about being in engineering?

S: I love developing features that not only meet requirements, but make the product more dynamic and modular. In the end, every line of code you write becomes an investment in the future of the product.

M: I like being part of a team full of creative and ambitious people that work with cutting-edge technology each and every day.

Can you briefly describe your day-to-day activities?

S: As the only full-time Android developer, my day-to-day activities are spread across multiple responsibilities, including being the middleman between the end-user and our product team here at BookedOut by Shiftgig. Basically, I bring features from conception to fruition and make them not only meaningful to our end users and clients, but also easy-to-use and bug-free (at least 99% bug-free). I also am responsible for staying up-to-date with the ever-changing Android operating system and implementing new technologies to innovate our current product and help deliver an application that is highly rated in the market.

M: As a member of the mobile team, I usually spend my days working on cool new features and maintaining current iOS applications. When I need a break, I play ping pong. I’ve gotten pretty good by playing pretty much everyday, several times a day.

What has been your biggest learning experience in this role?

S: My biggest learning experience as an Android developer has been finding a way to juggle different projects at once. Learning how to multi-task has benefitted me at work and in my personal life by changing my mentality from “I can put a couple more hours outside of work to make this better” to “how can I efficiently use my time now so that I can spend two more hours later to improve something else?”

M: Before I worked at BookedOut, I was actually a bricklayer for a construction company. My developer role at BookedOut was my first “big gig” as a foreigner (I moved here from Poland), so pretty much everything here – from the language barrier to learning best code practices and agile environments – has been a challenging learning experience. My quick transition from a contractor into a full-time mobile developer helped me grow significantly.

Can you share a story about your most successful or exciting moment on the job?

S: One of my most successful and exciting moments on the job was when I was in a time crunch to completely theme the BookedOut app for specific users that needed it for the Rio Olympics in Brazil. The fact that I got it done just before the deadline while maintaining the current app and creating features scheduled for release was a huge accomplishment!

M: I also worked on a tight deadline to create a nearly brand new layout of our BookedOut app for Nike brand ambassadors in the Rio Olympics. It was really challenging, but exciting to see how successfully it worked down in Rio!

What are the key attributes for success for your position or within the engineering team?

S: One of the keys for success is not only doing your job but going above and beyond the requirements. Whether this means forecasting the impact of a feature and making adjustments to solve potential problems or slowing down to understand the requirements before jumping into a project.

M: I’ve always worked by the mantra, “Be obsessed or be average.” As an engineer, you need to be passionate about what you’re doing and aware of how you can make a difference in people’s lives.

What’s your favorite thing about working at Shiftgig?

S: I highly value my work but even more, the people I work with. Personally, I invest in maintaining and improving the culture so that my teammates aren’t just co-workers, but friends I can rely on.

M: It’s amazing to be surrounded by dedicated people that work together to build something amazing. Plus, the views from the office are pretty cool!

What do you like to do when you’re not working?

S: Outside of work, I manage a soccer club called Ummah FC. It means “one nation, one team.” I also love snowboarding, developing websites for local businesses and creating mobile apps for personal use.

M: My new favorite hobby is 3D printing. I love the idea of creating physical objects from a digital design. I currently have an account at a popular 3D design host where other enthusiasts can share, comment on and use my designs!

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About The Author

Jane Smith is the Community Relations Manager at Shiftgig. She is passionate about helping Shiftgig Specialists and helping transform the way people work. In her free time, Jane loves cooking, exploring Chicago, and spending time with family.