How Seth (the work experience student) helped drive our business forward

A little while ago, we told you how two members of our team visited a local school to deliver a talk about Publish Interactive and, more generally, about working in the technology and software development business.

Following that talk, we were contacted by the teacher who’d arranged the whole thing to ask if we’d be willing to have a student join us for a work placement. The Year 10 student is keen on a career in avionics and was interested in coming to us for two weeks to gain a greater insight into how a software development business might work.

As we love taking on interns and work experience students, and helping them gain confidence and knowledge, we jumped at the chance. So, last month, Seth joined us for two weeks.

Now, what commonly happens on work experience is that the student is given a series of tasks to complete that have been hanging around the business for some time. These are often little more than chores. This wasn’t the case for Seth because he had skills our business could put to use.

So, we thought, why not give him something to do that was of use to both him – and us?

“I knew I would be able to do something related to programming, but I didn’t know specifically what that would be,” said Seth.

“On my first day, Paul [Popat, developer] talked me through what I needed to do – that was to build case studies of how customers could use the APIs that Publish Interactive has created.

“Paul gave me examples of what to programme then I got started. I learned a lot about C# as I went and Paul taught me better ways to code, useful shortcuts. C# is similar to Java, which I know how to programme, so it wasn’t that difficult to use.

“For each case study, I would code, then submit my code to GitHub [software development platform] where it could be viewed by Paul; he could then suggest changes which I would then implement, then transfer from my GitHub to the company’s GitHub area.”

During his two weeks with Publish Interactive, Seth developed several different case studies which have since been made available for customers to use, adapt, or take as reference points when they implement APIs from iReports.

“I found my time at Publish Interactive really useful,” added Seth. “I learned new things I can take away and use in my own programming projects and I was able to contribute. Hopefully, what I have learned will make it easier for me to learn other programming languages too.”

We’re delighted that Seth found his time with us useful, because we were just as pleased with his contribution. To have a young person come in and contribute ‘real’ work that helps our business to deepen and enhance its relationship with customers is no small feat.

Thank you, Seth. It was a pleasure having you here!

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