The IT-trainee programme at the Swedish Board of Agriculture (SJV in short for Statens Jordbruksverket) is a wonderful opportunity to kickstart a career in IT sector. It is 9 months long training programme with a clear intention to recruit all who participates in the programme. In 2017, almost 60 graduates competed for this programme and only 6 people were selected including me. The selection process was in Swedish and it included several interviews, a written programming test, and several group work tests. The six of us has graduated from different universities in Sweden and comes from different cultural backgrounds. My personal feeling is that we have one quality in common and that is being ourselves.

The Swedish Board of Agriculture is a government organization where approximately 1300 employees work. It works very closely with the European Union and the Swedish government. The purpose of this organization is to build a good natural environment, to help the farmers, to boost rural development and much more. Read more about it at the following link.

Since September this year, I am working here as a trainee and it has been very productive in terms of competence growth and team collaborations. I find it very exciting and interesting to work with other trainees and people who have been working here for a long time. We recently had a Christmas party which was festive, gorgeous and fun. We also participated in bowling with colleagues, Halloween party, breakfast club and lots of quality fika time within very few months at the Swedish Board of Agriculture. Personally, I think it is a very alive place and I have experienced that the working culture of this organization includes a great deal of respect for each other, positive attitude, fast and honest feedback and solving problems together.

We have had 3 months learning period and now we are in the practice period which is also 3 months long. After that, we are going to have trail employment period for 3 months.

I worked in a team called POF during the first part of the practice period. My key responsibilities were frontend Javascript (Angular JS and Typescript) development and backend Java development. I have implemented 3 new features and one bug fix in a period of 13 working days for the release in February 2018 called Flit 2.9. FLIT is a big system for managing and controlling EU funds for a wide range of projects and distributing support money to farmers and companies. It contains hundreds of Java web services, a simple frontend with Angular JS and Typescript, Postgres database, Java message services to communicate with other internal and external systems and much more. It took a few days of time for me to get the development environment properly up and running. My mentors Magnus and Jane explained to me how this huge system works and answered all my questions. From first-hand experience, it seems to me that Java EE and Maven modules are a complicated combination and a considerable amount of time is required to get things up and running during installation, compiling code during development and testing the tests.

The working flow starts from a Jira issue, it can be a new functionality, correcting fail implementation, bugfix or something else. Then we start a Git branch with a reference to the Jira issue. When programming is done for the requirements, tests are written to validate and verify the usability of the code. Usually, tests require more codes than the requirement itself. When tests are passed, we push the code to remote branch and open a merge request to the targeted release branch. At this stage, a Jenkin instance automatically begins to build the new code into the expected release branch and tests all sort of tests. If there is no problem or errors up to this stage, a code reviewer will review the code and merge it into the targeted release if everything is alright with the code.

Other than programming, I have been to spring planning, kompismöte where we discussed Jira issues, utvecklingsmöte where we discussed best programming practices. The team has a few software development consultants who work for other or own companies.  Also i have worked with two trainees from last year who has got a permanent position in this team. Overall, I have enjoyed the time at team POF, my colleagues were very helpful, special thanks to Magnus, Jane, Pierre, Peter (Developer), Michael and Peter (Team leader). I have definitely learned a lot and I feel myself one step forward in terms of my competence, personality, and professional growth.

Christmas and New year holidays starts from this weekend and after that, I am going to continue the practice period at team SEALS where new challenges awaits for me. I wish everyone a happy new year 2018.