Opus’ CEO: 3 Key Things to Look Out for When Choosing Your Next Company
It’s no secret that job seekers are spoiled for choices and it takes just a quick scroll through listings to find something appealing. However, first looks can be deceiving and what might look shiny and awesome from the outside, may be rotten and unpleasant once you dig a little deeper.
That’s exactly why you should figure out what is it that you exactly want from your new position, be it your 1st tech job, second, or tenth. Each company can offer you something that others can’t and each and every one of them has its weaknesses, which might be totally acceptable for some, but absolute dealbreakers for others.
Whilst the complete list of considerations is never-ending, here are three key areas you should consider.
Do you want to do one thing for the entire time?
Product-focused companies might be sexy, but after a while, the work can get repetitive – you’ll be working with one tech stack, one general goal, and one ideology for your entire time at the company. While for some this might be exactly what they’re looking for, then oftentimes people seek some variability and opportunities to try their hand at something new.
That’s where service-based companies come in. Due to their nature, each project starts and ends at some point. This period might be six months, it might be a year, it might be five, but sooner or later each and every developer knows that they’ll get to work on something new and exciting. Besides that, as service-based companies work with dozens of different clients, the opportunities are far more plentiful.
Whilst it’s not new-day-new-project kind of deal, the flexibility is there. Should you feel that you’d like to grow your expertise in some new area, handle projects in a totally different industry, or just do something different after a while, that’s something that can be easily achieved. Of course, shorter-term projects might not give you the chance to get deeply invested in a particular application, but the opportunities to grow far outweigh this downside.
What’s the culture like?
Each company has its own culture that fits certain kinds of people. Some companies are large, stable, and bureaucratic, others are casual, totally laid-back, and familiar. Oftentimes these attributes apply to either multinational corporations or fledgling start-ups, but if you look hard enough, there’s a middle ground.
At Opus, we’ve set a goal for ourselves to combine the best of both worlds: while we are a decent-sized company that’s stable and here to stay, we do not let that slow down innovation, flexibility and adaptability, or overall friendliness and familiarity. We understand that this approach might not suit everyone, but more often than not it offers the exact combination of traits people are looking for.
But we’re not here to tell you to pick us, we’re the best (well, maybe a little). We understand that everyone’s different and looking for something that fits their values, as such we think it’s important to emphasize understanding any company’s true nature before signing on the dotted line. It’s a couple of hours of digging or interviews that will save you months or years of hardships in the future.
How do you like to work?
As with culture, each company has a unique style when it comes to their working methods. Some of the approaches might appeal to some, others to someone else. When choosing your first position it might be hard to describe what suits you, but by your second or third gig, it should be pretty clear. Or, in unfortunate cases, you’ll have a good understanding of what you do not want.
Working methods include everything from flexibility and freedom (remote work, total freedom in decisions, no managers), all the way to the technical and structural aspects of everyday work (teams and their structure, development paradigms, tech stack and the approach to documentation). These small factors are key when choosing your next challenge, as they are not something easily changeable, but are something that you’ll rub up against every single day.
With that in mind, you should attempt to figure out what works for you and what doesn’t. And it when comes to applying, interviewing, or touring the office, you should press both the recruiters and any manager you encounter hard to unlock all of the answers you need to make an educated decision. For some, it might seem rude, but it’s nevertheless important – any decent company that values its employee’s happiness is more than happy to give up this information upfront.