Mobile Wrangling on WooCommerce
Joined April 2019
I’m Anitaa Murthy, an Android developer living in Chennai, India. I have eight years of experience in mobile development and have been working at Automattic for two years now. It’s been the best two years of my career!
The Hiring Process
I’ve applied to many companies and have interviewed with a lot of people, but I have never had such a unique interview experience as the one I had with Automattic. For example, I never had one phone or video call with anyone during the entire process!
It all started with a Slack chat, which was the first stage of the interview process. It was really refreshing and welcome not to sit through a Zoom call with someone I’d never seen before. When face to face with a potential employer, I feel I may not always make a great first impression, so it was a relief to have a more casual conversation via Slack. It really helped me get over my initial fear of “the interview” and allowed me to be myself. And because the hiring team doesn’t see or hear anyone during the interview process, it removes a lot of bias that may otherwise happen during hiring.
The second stage of my interview process was a code test. This was an asynchronous “take home” exercise, which an applicant can do at their own pace and in their own time, using the tools that work for them. I usually enjoy the code test stage at any company because this is what I’m good at — this is what I came here to do.
The third stage of my interview process was a paid trial. The aim was to do around 40 total hours working on real problems and challenges that individuals in this role face day-to-day. I loved this process. It gave me a glimpse of what my life at this company would be like if I was hired. And I fell in love with the culture at Automattic right then! The trial process also helped the Mobile Division, the team within Automattic I’d join, to understand how I work and whether we’d be compatible 🙂 My “buddy” during the trial, who was based in the US, was awesome as well. There was a time zone difference of 12+ hours, but given our communication tools and async nature of the company, it did not matter at all!
What does a day in the life look like for you?
A typical day at Automattic for me starts with a good breakfast 🙂 I typically have 1:1s with a few folks early in the morning. I like to split my day into two2 halves. I work from 7:30 in the morning till 11:30 in the morning, then take a break until 2:00 pm for lunch and other chores. I then work again from 2:00 to 6:00 pm. The best thing is that I get the flexibility to choose when I get to work. If I have calls that day, I tend to spread out my time accordingly. I can run errands or other do other family- related work and choose to work later in the day as well.
What’s the best part of working at Automattic?
The people I get to work with. There’s no contest. Over the years, I’ve only ever worked at startup companies and have usually been the only female mobile developer in a team of 10 or so male web or backend developers. At Automattic, I get to work with many talented people from all over the world. I initially thought my timezone might be a problem. But it wasn’t! Ultimately, it’s great to connect with teammates that live halfway across the globe. And there’s always someone online to help out, regardless of the time.
What do you like about the company culture?
I love the supportive and caring environment that Automattic creates. I feel respected and valued for all the work I do and really empowered to do my best here. Automatticians have a lot of independence to explore and learn new things. I’m an Android developer first and foremost, but I get the space to explore learning iOS or to contribute to backend API projects as well.
What would you say to someone considering applying for a role within Automattic?
Automattic is an amazing place to work! You have the opportunity to work with a lot of talented folks in different countries all working together to make an impact and to democratize the web.