- NEWSROOM -

A coffee, a pint, and a new job

5 October 2017

A coffee, a pint, and a new job 1

It’s been almost five years since I arrived in Ireland. I had finished my degree but couldn’t find a job in Madrid. I had a lot of friends telling me there were engineering and IT jobs in Ireland, so I decided to try.

It was a difficult decision to make to leave Spain. Leaving your home country, your friends and family to start from zero in a different culture is always hard at the beginning, but it’s a way to challenge yourself as well.

My second week in Ireland, I got an interview at Ex Ordo. Paul, the founder of the company, met me in Dublin, and I had my first interview there in a coffee shop. I found it a little weird, in Spain you go to the office for an interview.

And I was only two weeks in Ireland, my English wasn’t so good. When Paul first started talking I couldn’t understand a thing he said. I was thinking, “If this doesn’t work out, at least I got a free coffee.”

But somehow… he asked me to come to Galway for another interview. In a pub this time.

Paul and the Chief Technical Officer, Mike, bought me a Guinness in McSwiggans. (They made me wait until the Guinness had settled "properly" before I took a drink.)

And I got the job.

First days

When I started we were five in a tiny office with no windows. First days in a new job are always difficult, there is a mix of feelings, the excitement, the nerves... When the job is outside your home country these feelings are multiplied by 10. It’s not just starting a new job, but starting a new life in a different culture with a different language.

Thankfully I felt really welcome from the beginning, everyone was nice and trying to help, and soon enough all my fears were laid to rest.

A coffee, a pint, and a new job 2

My First Ex Ordo Christmas

Why front end?

At that time I had only some basic programming in C that I got in university and just a little knowledge of HTML, CSS and Javascript. But I was willing to learn. It was thanks to Mike that I’ve started to be really interested in the front-end world (the part of Ex Ordo that users see and interact with).

Front-end is not like any other kind of programming, where the programme either works, or it doesn’t. It’s different. Sometimes it’s like you’re not only an engineer but a magician - you press a button and things start moving, sending data to servers.

Ex Ordo’s growth

If I look back to the early days, it’s amazing to see how much Ex Ordo has grown. We’ve had to move offices four times, with each office being bigger than the last.

Author: Raúl Arribas, Developer, Ex Ordo, 5 October 2017

Ed’s note: In April 2022, after two years of chipping away at a part-time master’s in software engineering and database technologies, Raúl donned a fancy robe and walked across the graduation stage at National University of Ireland, Galway. We couldn’t be more proud of and happy for him. And our customers love the impact his digital wizardry has on their user-experience across our Ex Ordo platform.

Oh, and although we still have our HQ in Galway city centre, Ex Ordo now operates as a remote-first company. The primary function of our brick-and-mortar office has changed to that of a cultural and collaborative space. Our growing team currently spans Galway, Dublin, and Cork in Ireland, and Cambridge in the UK.

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