Our people’s stories 16 August 2023

From Interns to Full-Time Employees: A Chat with Lingling, Consultant & Satang, Back-End Engineer

An internship offers more than just an opportunity to develop your hard skills. It is a time for self-discovery, stepping out of your comfort zone, and opening doors to new opportunities, including the chance to work in a highly supportive team environment on a full-time basis.

Today, we have the pleasure of hearing from Lingling, a Consultant in the Management Consulting team, and Satang, a Back-End Engineer in the Digital Excellence & Delivery department. They are celebrating their 1st work anniversary and are excited to share their experiences as interns who successfully transitioned into full-time employees.

Let’s take a trip down memory lane and explore the projects they were involved in during their internship. Additionally, we’ll delve into the valuable lessons they learned along the way and gain insights into their lives as full-time members of the team.

Without any further delay, let’s hear from Lingling and Satang as they share their remarkable journeys.

What did you study and why do you want to intern at Bluebik?

Satang: I graduated with a degree in Computer Engineering from Kasetsart University. During a job fair, Bluebik had a booth, and I had the opportunity to engage with their staff, who were all welcoming and amiable. I decided to research the company further and found the products to be fascinating. Moreover, the job responsibilities aligned with my area of study, and I want to experience what it would be like working as an engineer. Another factor was the significant presence of fellow alumni from my university at Bluebik, including Pong (Pakorn Jiemskultip), the CTO, who graduated from the same faculty as me.

Lingling: I majored in Finance at BBA, Chulalongkorn University. I wanted to intern at Bluebik because I’ve always been interested in consulting. A friend of mine had previously interned here and had a great time. He mentioned that the seniors were really nice, so I thought it would be an amazing experience to intern at Bluebik.

Can you share an example of a project you worked on during your internship?

Lingling: I worked on a growth strategy project for a client. My main responsibility was creating a joint venture deck to pitch to a company and convince them to collaborate with our client. It was a challenging task as it was my first time working on a deck independently butI felt fortunate to have the opportunity. The seniors provided me with guidance and let me think and work on my own. They also supported me in refining my ideas. I really appreciated that I had full ownership of the project and was able to work on my own ideas rather than following someone else’s.

Satang: I was involved in a project for an insurance client. Initially, I worked as a Front-End Engineer, but I had diverse interests, so I asked the senior members to work on back-end projects as well. Eventually, I discovered that I have a preference for back-end work. In my team, the typical approach was that the seniors would present me with questions and allow me to solve them. I would explore different theories and approaches to find solutions, which the seniors would then review.

Transitioning from front-end to back-end was quite challenging for me due to the different programming languages involved. While front-end projects required me to work with Angular, back-end projects involved working with Java. Additionally, I had to carefully consider various factors. Front-end work primarily focused on the front-end server, whereas back-end work required me to consider aspects such as network, environment, database, and even the deployment of our mini server. It was crucial for me to take all these factors into consideration, understanding which parts of the system would be impacted by my work and how I could effectively manage my tasks.

What impressed you the most during your internship?

Lingling: There were two things that really stood out to me. Firstly, I loved the nature of the work I was involved in. It was exactly what I had always wanted to do, and the senior members gave me the opportunity to experience it. Secondly, the seniors were very supportive. They were always there to help and answer any questions I had. Even if they didn’t have an immediate answer, they would go above and beyond to find it for me. Overall, I felt that I was supported in a way that I could grow even further in my career. 

Satang: The first thing that struck me was the importance of communication. Coming from an engineering background, I normally didn’t talk to anyone that much (laughs). However, during my internship here, I had the opportunity to meet and interact with people from diverse backgrounds. Moreover, as an engineer, it was crucial for me to know how to ask about the project requirements, and I received great support from the business analysts, who suggested what questions to ask. They also gave me the chance to pitch to the clients alongside them. The seniors in every position, not just engineers, were all kind to me. 

What were the most valuable lessons you learned from your internship at Bluebik?

Satang: As an engineer, I learned the importance of understanding and clarifying project requirements. Starting work without thorough discussions could lead to mistakes that require fixing later on. Therefore, it is crucial for me to have confidence and speak up, ensuring that any potential issues are addressed. Another valuable lesson was that as engineers, our role goes beyond solving programming problems. We also need to analyze and solve real-world problems, considering the perspectives of both technical and non-technical individuals who may have different viewpoints.

Lingling: I learned that fear can hold you back in life. If I had been too afraid to take on challenging tasks assigned by the senior members, I wouldn’t have been able to identify my strengths, weaknesses, and areas for improvement. I realized that when an opportunity comes your way, you should seize it. This is the most rewarding thing you can do for your own life. So, the lesson I learned is not to be afraid and to embrace every opportunity in order to gain a deeper understanding of myself.

After the internship, you were invited to work here full-time. What qualities do you think contributed to receiving the offer?

Lingling: I actually want to ask the seniors (laughs), but honestly, I believe two factors were involved. Firstly, based on their observations, my skills must have met their standards, making me a good fit for the role. Secondly, they must have considered my future potential and assessed whether I could further develop. They must have seen my passion for consulting and thought they could nurture it.

Satang: The lesson about being confident played a part. I gradually grew from a shy person who was afraid to talk or ask questions to a confident individual who isn’t afraid to admit when I’m wrong and embrace change, while also addressing any issues I notice. This is what it took in terms of soft skills.

Regarding hard skills, there was a friendly contest within the team where I won the grand prize. The seniors presented us interns with algorithmic problems to solve, such as finding the fewest moves to win a chess game. They promised to award the winner with a keyboard. The one I received was the Keychron K3, which I still use to this day. Thank you, guys (laughs).

It appears that both of you share courage and a strong drive for self-development. Do you think these qualities are common among everyone at Bluebik?

Lingling: I believe they are. Everyone here is talented, but we don’t settle for that alone. We continuously seek ways to sharpen our skills. It’s like everyone is a bundle of energy. Sometimes I wonder where they find all that energy (laughs).

Satang: I couldn’t agree more. In my team, we have colleagues who are also in their first jobs, and each one of us strives to deepen our knowledge in our respective fields. We have been working together for a year now, and I can see that each person has become a specialist in their area. The progress has been remarkable. When you surround yourself with such motivated individuals, you naturally follow suit; otherwise, you risk being left behind. Besides, it’s enjoyable to be around them. We frequently share industry news, like discussing a global bug and analyzing it together.

Is there a difference between being an intern and a full-time employee?

Satang: In the initial months of transitioning from an intern to a full-time team member, the seniors continued to provide close guidance and support, similar to when I was an intern. However, after a couple of months, I began to notice the differences. The scale and complexity of the projects I was assigned increased significantly. Now that I work on products with a large user base, I must ensure that they not only have great features but also deliver exceptional performance. Additionally, the seniors stopped assisting me with certain tasks and allowed me to handle them on my own (laughs). Moreover, there is still much for me to learn along the way, and I must balance that with my workload.

Lingling: I completely agree regarding the magnitude of the work. As a full-time employee, I’m entrusted with larger projects. However, the transition was gradual, and the seniors gave me time to adjust. Another notable difference is the expectations. As an intern, the focus was on learning as much as possible, whereas as a full-time team member, they expect me to consistently deliver excellent work.

This question is for Lingling. What are the advantages of being a technology sector consultant?

Lingling: When formulating a strategy, I thoroughly assess its practicality. Traditional consultants may prioritize achieving business goals over practicality. I mean, they do consider practicality, but not as extensively as in terms of implementing the strategy with technology. For instance, do we have sufficient data for digital products? As a technology consultant, you must take numerous factors into account when designing solutions for clients. You genuinely consider every aspect to ensure that clients can practically implement the strategy.

Now a question for Satang. What are the advantages of being a back-end engineer in a firm that combines consulting and digital delivery?

Satang: It’s exhilarating to tackle real issues faced by our clients. Understanding their business challenges and figuring out how technology can provide solutions is a completely different experience from solving algorithmic problems, and it broadens my perspective.

At Bluebik, there are employees from various countries, particularly in the Digital Excellency & Delivery team. What are some of the enjoyable aspects or challenges of working with individuals from diverse backgrounds?

Satang: This has been a new and thrilling experience for me. It’s the first time I’ve had friends from India and Vietnam. I’ve had more opportunities to use English and have learned how English can differ depending on the context. It’s one thing to engage in small talk and another to discuss technical matters. On one occasion, we had a misunderstanding regarding a technical term. I had to analyze what they meant and searched for answers in English community blogs. Eventually, I discovered that we simply used different terms for the same thing. It was indeed a challenging but enjoyable experience.

How does working at Bluebik fulfill your needs and goals in life?

Lingling: When it comes to my self-development goals, such as the scope of work and acquiring new skills, I feel truly fulfilled. I’m delighted that I’ve been able to achieve all of this within a relatively short period of time. Moreover, the work-life balance at Bluebik is just right for me. I don’t feel overwhelmed or stressed with work. The support, even in terms of emotional support, is always available. Simply put, I’ve accomplished my goals, and throughout the journey, it has never felt like a burden.

Satang: My experience is similar. Working here has allowed me to grow, and the workload is not too much or too stressful. And even if it is, I can simply let my seniors know, and they are always there to support me.

Lastly, is there anything you’d like to say to students interested in interning at Bluebik?

Satang: As students, our knowledge is limited. If you intern at a company with an open mindset, you’ll have the opportunity to grow personally and professionally. It’s not just about completing tasks; it’s about discovering your passion, just as I did. Moreover, interning here will provide you with a clearer vision of your career path, which is invaluable for any university student.

Lingling: If you want more than just the name “Bluebik” on your resume, interning here is a must. What you’ll gain goes beyond a credential; it’s an understanding of your own capabilities and what you need to do to continue growing. Additionally, you’ll develop a deeper understanding of how the corporate world operates and what is expected of you in terms of output. Beyond the work aspect, you’ll also expand your support network, both within and outside the workplace. 

If you’ve made it this far, don’t waste any time! Find more details on how to intern at Bluebik here: https://bluebik.com/career/internship See you soon!