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Learning with DigiStar #Part1 – I immediately felt like a part of the team

Innofactor’s DigiStar program was organized for the third time in 2021. New graduates, career changers, and people who are in the final stages of their studies and who are enthusiastic about modern technologies may be selected for the program. In 2021, a total of 14 DigiStars started working in different roles around Innofactor’s Finland offices. In this blog series, Miika Mikkonen, who started at the Tampere office, shares his honest experiences along the way.


It all started with a passion for software development

Spring 2021 was wild. After a year of coronavirus isolation and remote studying, I decided to look for work outside my hometown of Jyväskylä after graduation. My background is in information system sciences, and I had accumulated good basic knowledge in software and system development. Therefore, I decided to apply for a job in software development, and in February I came across a notification about the DigiStar program. Innofactor seemed like a reliable workplace where I could develop my competency in modern technologies.

I was able to start work in May 2021. On the first day, an enthusiastic group of Innofactor employees welcomed us at the Tampere office and we got computers. However, due to the coronavirus, we moved from the office to home to work remotely, and the work began with a two-week virtual Bootcamp training.


Intensive but rewarding Bootcamp

Before starting the Bootcamp, I wondered: “How can I get on the team to do customer projects with only two weeks of Bootcamp? After all, I don’t know anything about it or what the company is doing, do I?” This was my first job in my own field, and I had even heard previously that in large companies a newcomer is thrown in the door, given a speech, and left to their own devices. However, this did not happen at Innofactor.

During the two weeks of Bootcamp, we studied the company’s operations, its business units and systems. The teams introduced themselves, and we got a long list of people we can contact if we have any questions or challenges. Day by day, I began to feel relieved. So, the first two weeks were full action and there was an overflow of information. Despite intensive training, the motivation for work and the company’s operations increased considerably.

Bootcamp had to be arranged remotely again this year, and we were not able to meet all DigiStars/colleagues live. However, despite the coronavirus restrictions, at my office we were able to have lunch and catch up with colleagues from time to time. At the end of the Bootcamp, we were able to play virtual escape room games, for example, with other DigiStars.


Get to know your team members and then to the “real” work

After the Bootcamp, I felt enthusiastic, and I was immediately involved in my own team. I was very well welcomed by the team, and the induction to team activities and customer projects started right away in the same week. Despite working remotely, I was able to talk to team members and ask all kinds of questions via Teams. I felt like I was a part of the team right from the start.

The team has plenty expertise to go around, and we have several customers. The projects consist largely of maintenance and migration projects, where the most widely used technologies are Typescript and React, which are widely used in the development of Microsoft SharePoint and Teams.

Now in the beginning, I look forward to diving deep into technologies and customer projects, and to working closely with my team members on different projects.