Music plays through the smart speaker next to my bed as the morning light filters through my bedroom windows. "STOP!" I groan from my bed, it follows my command and halts right on cue. After some tossing and turning, I roll out of bed, pour myself a bowl of cereal and chill out on the couch while reading top news stories of the day. After a quick shower, I get ready for work and dash out the door.
If I'm lucky, I manage to grab a seat on the limited-stops train, which brings me to Sydney Central station in just half an hour. It’s a nice walk down to the office at Commonwealth Bank Square. I usually listen to an audiobook or a podcast episode during my commute - it makes the time go quickly and I learn something new too.
I love starting my workday with a cup of green tea at my stand-up desk, scanning a few newsletters before checking my emails. It’s another opportunity to keep myself up to date on topics like financial intelligence, cybersecurity and the daily news. There’s chatter in the background as my team gradually make their way into the office. Once my team assemble, we head downstairs to our favourite café for a quick coffee to start our day.
Back in the office, it's time to begin our peer code reviews: reviewing the coding work completed by fellow engineers on the team. Code reviews are an essential aspect of a Software Engineer’s job. It can be tedious at times, but code reviews play a key role in effective collaboration. My code is my team’s code, and vice versa. I've found that reviewing code is the best way to learn about novel programming concepts and patterns from my colleagues. Everyone has had different experiences and sources of inspiration for their code writing style. We try to make the process as enjoyable as possible by injecting some fun into our comments with some good-natured ribbing on the occasional mistake. Eventually, everything gets merged into a single shared repository of code, which is used in one of our many apps used by our customers.
Finally, it's the code-writing time! I catch up with our team's Business Analyst and fellow engineers to get all the information I need to start the coding task. I find coding enjoyable because it feels like I’m assembling parts of a very elaborate jigsaw puzzle. Thanks to the work of the team's architect, we have an idea of what the complete solution should look like. Depending on what existing code we have, I usually have some locations in the code which I can use as a starting point and dive into building the next cohesive piece of the puzzle.
Lunchtime! One of my favourite times of the day. Normally I bring in a home-made meal, but sometimes I treat myself to one of the many food options around Darling Square. My favourite go-to meal is a Vietnamese crispy skin fried chicken and rice or a Pork Sisig from a Filipino restaurant nearby. I grab my lunch and walk cross to Tumbalong Park and join the other grads. If we have time we go for a stroll along the harbour.
Back at my desk and fighting off the food coma, I continue on with my coding task. A cup of tea helps me to concentrate.
Time for the daily team huddle. We gather around a screen displaying the team's project management board and each of us takes turns to share what we've been working on that day. It’s a good opportunity for me to ask for support from my wider team if I come across any difficulty or hurdles that block my work. It's all quite informal, everyone feels comfortable to share their progress, which is important to the smooth running of the project.
I return to my desk to continue coding and once I complete the code I upload it for my teammates to review. Occasionally our team has other meetings which usually revolve around discussing the state of the project as a whole and re-assessing the work that needs to be done. Understanding the team’s project backlog of work means that we start and deliver work at a consistent pace.
Wow, this day has gone quickly! I really enjoy my work and the people I work with make all the difference. Sometimes the grads plan a dinner catch-up after work. On other days I like to rest and relax at home, watching a movie or playing a video game.
All in a day's work.