A day in the life of a Frontend Engineer: Petar Georgiev on developing a career in the industry and balancing between work and university life

What is it like to work in the IT industry in Bulgaria? This is a question many people interested in a career in the sector ask themselves. So, we, at BICA, gathered some of the people that we helped find the right job to share their stories. With this series of interviews, we are aiming to show people how everyday life of a person working in the IT sector goes. We hope to break some cliches about the professionals employed in the industry and inspire more individuals considering a career in IT.

Today, we will share with you the story of Petar Georgiev, a Front-end engineer and a university student. He shares how a high school mobile app development contest inspired him to become a professional in the industry. Petar also shares his biggest challenge when looking for a new job and how the professionals from BICA helped tackle it. Learn more about Petar’s story and his goals for the future in our interview:

Can you describe yourself in a few sentences?

My name is Petar Georgiev and I’m currently a university student at D. A. Academy of Economics in Svishtov. Currently, I am a Salesforce developer and front-end engineer at emerchantpay. I have had a passion for programming ever since I was in high school and I’ve been developing my career in the field for more than 3 years.

Can you tell us a bit more about the position of a Salesforce developer?

We’re dedicated to adding functionalities to the CRM Salesforce platform. Through them we allow our colleagues to use it in an easier and more efficient way. Our development unlocks the possibility for other teams inside the company to create valuable products for our customers.

How does a day in your life go? Do you have a usual routine (waking up, coping with tasks, activities in your spare time)?

I wouldn’t say that I have a strict routine that I follow. My day usually starts with a cup of coffee and a look through different tasks I have to complete and prioritize them. After that, I begin working on whatever it’s planned for the day. What I enjoy is that we have team meetings twice a month where we discuss different challenges we faced in our work and how to approach them. My colleagues at emerchantpay are very good professionals that are always available to help me and share knowledge with me. As I am at an early stage of my career I highly value the opportunity to learn from more experienced experts.

A look through your LinkedIn profile showed us that you are interested in developing your knowledge in React. How did you become passionate about it? Was it easy to learn the basics of it?

I became passionate about React when I was in the process of improving my JavaScript skills. It offers a wide range of frameworks and libraries which are very helpful in my job. I really like the concept of React and the fact that everything is divided into different components which can be adapted and reused in the future. This way I don’t have to rewrite the same code every time I need to use a certain element.

I managed to learn the basics of React quite easily because I have knowledge of JavaScript which really helped. The advanced concepts of it are a bit harder and you need to dive deeper into it.

You were part of the National student competition in mobile app development. How did this event motivate you to start a career in the industry?

I was interested in software development before the event but the competition is what gave me a more professional look at the industry and was a big motivation for me to start a career in the industry. Talking with other participants and the jury members, I realized how tech products help people to solve their problems and I wanted to be part of building these solutions.

What is the biggest challenge you previously faced when looking for a job?

The biggest challenge for me was the lack of practical experience with React. I managed to learn the technology by myself at home, however, most companies were looking for someone with at least 1–2 years of experience and I struggled to find a company that believed in me.

How did BICA help with the process? Tell us more about your experience with the company.

Everyone from BICA was very helpful in the process of finding my job, especially Yoana, who I worked closely with. She was proactive and reached out to me with the possibility to develop in React at emerchantpay. As it was only my second job interview, I was very nervous and didn’t feel confident. Yoana managed to help me by making sure I feel comfortable and believe in my skills.

She was also very helpful with one of the tasks I had. I didn’t manage to complete it in time because I had to focus on my previous job and also finish my exams at uni. So Yoana spoke with emerchantpay representatives and convinced them to extend the deadline. This allowed me to complete the task in the best way possible and get the job.

What is the most important thing for you when looking for an employer?

My main priority when evaluating potential employers is the possibility for career development across the company. The other two factors I take into consideration are the employee environment inside a potential employer and the technology it uses.

As well as a professional in the industry, you are currently a university student. How do you manage to combine work and education?

The pandemic was really helpful for me when it comes to combining work and education. Since I am both working and studying from home, I have the opportunity to attend lectures and also deal with my tasks. The flexibility we have at emerchantpay allowed me to attend my exams and also develop professionally.

What do you want to achieve in the future?

My goal for the future is to continue improving my knowledge on the technologies I am interested in and want to take a more senior position in the next few years. As a long-term goal I would say leading a team and developing inside the company are top priorities for me.

If you want to find the right position for you, check out our website and take the next step in your career.

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