Roman Mazurets — an Artist on the Back End

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Roman Mazurets is a Ruby on Rails developer at Syndicode. He firmly believes that coding is a form of art aimed at solving problems and bringing pleasure to users and creators. Wait, the same is true about most things in life!

What is your role at Syndicode?

I am a backend developer, which means I am responsible for new software feature creation and codebase maintenance. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. I’m also involved in estimating project timelines and translating client requirements into actionable tasks. 

This means I spend a lot of time writing code and communicating with business analysts to translate a client’s vision into code correctly.

A significant portion of my job involves hunting down bugs, which involves working closely with QA engineers to ensure that the software meets safety and usability standards. It’s a crucial aspect of my role that requires constant attention to detail.

What does a typical workday look like for you at Syndicode?

Since I work remotely, I enjoy the flexible schedule. I can start my day with some physical exercise, have breakfast, and be ready for the daily standup. I usually work until lunch and then take a break to go for a walk or hit the gym.

I’ve found that taking regular breaks works wonders for my ability to concentrate, so I make sure to take them even if my workday stretches well past 6 pm. In fact, it’s not unusual for me to finish working at around 9 in the evening. But despite the long hours, I feel less tired than I used to when I spent eight hours straight in front of a computer.

Give an example of a routine task of yours

I can’t say I have any routine tasks, as each project is unique. However, there are specific tasks that I perform regularly. For example, I ensure the project requirements are clearly defined, brainstorm the best implementation approach, and translate it into code.

But the requirements and implementation methods vary from project to project, as each client has different business needs and end-user demands. This means that I have to be adaptable and think creatively to develop the best solution for each project.

What’s your favorite part of working as a software developer?

What I love about software development is the power it gives me to create products that can improve people’s lives, all from the comfort of my own home. 

For me, software development is a form of art, and I’m constantly amazed at how accessible it is. All I need is a laptop and a reliable internet connection, and I can change the world with just a few keystrokes!

What was your career path before joining Syndicode?

I first discovered my passion for programming back in secondary school when I was learning Information Technology. We had the famous ZX Spectrum computers—some of the readers may remember them! That’s where I wrote my first lines of code, and from then on, I pursued IT and programming throughout my university studies.

However, it took me almost a decade to start working in the field. In the meantime, I explored other areas, such as graphic design, advertising, and DJing.

Eventually, I decided it was time for a change and remembered my love for programming. I enrolled in a software development academy on my third attempt, and upon completion, I landed my first project with a company.

While at the academy, I also started working on a personal project. Luckily, I had a friend who ran a small business and became my first real client. Together, we created a CRM, which, by the time I had finished, had become irrelevant (laughs). Nonetheless, the experience of working with real-life requirements and limitations proved invaluable for the start of my career.

Before joining Syndicode, I worked with several startups, primarily as an outsourcing specialist.

What made you want to work at Syndicode?

I was looking for a job that would consistently challenge me with new types of problems to solve and technology stacks to work with. During the job interview at Syndicode, I was presented with unconventional and interesting problems to solve. The tech lead who interviewed me was a great specialist, and I immediately felt the desire to work with him.

Then I spoke with Dmytro Romanchenko, the CEO, and was impressed by his values and determination to create a friendly and cooperative work environment at the company.

Now that I have been working at Syndicode for over two years, I still appreciate the camaraderie and positive attitude among my colleagues. The people at Syndicode are dedicated to delivering the best possible results and are focused on finding solutions rather than dwelling on problems.

How have you seen Syndicode change in the two years you’ve been here?

When I first joined Syndicode, it was a small group of people who were often handling multiple roles. But now, the company has expanded into a full-service digital transformation provider with specialized departments, each with its own managers. We have dedicated teams for QA, business analysis, solution architecture, HR, marketing, and sales. Our projects have become larger, and many of them are ongoing.

I’ve seen the company grow a lot during my time here, and I feel like I’ve grown as a specialist as well.

Do you have any tips for new colleagues to keep feeling connected working remotely?

Personally, I enjoy live communication and used to love working in an office. However, since the pandemic has made working from home a new normal, I’ve had to find ways to maintain connections with my colleagues. Here are a few things I do:

  • I never miss stand-ups and meetings and always participate actively.
  • I always have my camera on during video calls to make them feel more personal.
  • If possible, I enter the meeting room a bit earlier to engage in some small talk with my colleagues before we get down to business.
  • I try to schedule regular informal meetings, such as virtual coffee breaks, where we can just chat and catch up with each other.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to become a RoR developer?

To be a good backend developer, one should have a strong understanding of how the internet works and how data is exchanged. This means being able to answer questions like “What happens when you click the search button on Google?” 

In addition to this, knowledge of object-oriented programming and fundamental JavaScript skills are essential, as backend work often involves working with monolithic structures and making edits to the front end. Familiarity with test-driven development is also helpful.

My advice for beginners to backend development is to be proactive and ask questions. It’s important to have a clear vision of the end goal, as this will help you to clarify your tasks and achieve the desired outcome more efficiently. 

If you’re just starting out, it’s best to avoid freelance projects. Clients in that realm may not have the time or inclination to mentor you, and they may simply choose another worker if you make mistakes. Instead, seek out a friendly and patient team that is open to answering apparent questions.

How do you maintain a sense of humor during these turbulent times?

I keep my sensors tuned up and ready for any potentially funny situations (smiles).

On a serious note, I prioritize taking care of my physical and emotional well-being. I go to the gym and take yoga classes regularly.

Additionally, I enjoy attending pub quizzes and playing computer games on occasion. This allows me to recharge and stay focused when I’m working.

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