SUCCESS STORY: IMTIAZ AT XLENT LINK
Are you curious of our popular Software Development Academy (SDA) and what it is like to be a stundet at the prestigious KTH? Then read this interview where our former SDA student, Imtiaz Akhtar, shares his experience from the beginning of the program until he got hired at XLENT LINK. The Head of Digital Business Platform development at XLENT Link, Johan Stålnacke, shares his thoughts of which soft skills are important when looking for new teammemebers.
How did you experience the recruiting process with Novare Potential?
The recruitment process was an exciting and challenging experience. I was doing Swedish for IT professionals (SFX) at Tyresö when I heard of Software Development Academy at KTH with Novare Potential. The recruitment process started with an invitation to complete various online tests that cover different aspects of logical, reasoning skills and English test. There was an interesting test about technical problem solving which I have never seen before. It was like a dry run of a computer program, where various shapes were fed to a processing unit and I must compute the output as quickly as possible and solve as many tasks as possible in a given time. I have really enjoyed that test. After the test, I got a call for a phone interview with Novare Potential. A couple of weeks later, in June 2019, I got an email for a physical interview. Finally, I received a long-waited acceptance email on July 1st, 2019.
After summer, the intensive Software Development Academy 6 at KTH began on September 2nd, 2019. Participants in the program had very different levels of prior experience in programming and software development. The objective was to work together as a team, creating a welcoming space for everyone where intensive, focused learning can flourish. I was glad to see the learning environment at the marvelous campus of KTH with world’s best teachers and professors from KTH.
The training was really intense and covered a wide variety of modern programming contents. I worked with various teams and projects in such a short time to experience the pace of agile development. During our course, I was also interviewed by a senior consultant at Novare Potential to identify my strength and areas of improvement. Novare Potential helped us to prepare our CV in a format that is widely acceptable in the local market. Our progress at academy in KTH and the feedback from our teachers, mentors were the key factors for Novare Potential to select the best candidates to introduce to their network of clients. Novare Potential has also arranged events to expose us to prospect companies. I got an interview on December 6 with XLENT Link and I was lucky to get confirmation on the same day, which is not very common. I signed a contract with Novare Potential and started the job the next year, on January 8th, 2020.
Tell us a little bit about your role at XLENT LINK
I am working at XLENT Link as an IT consultant with a focus on backend programming. XLENT Link offers a cloud-based SaaS service (Nexus Link) that provides smooth digital integration for companies to integrate various IT systems. Working with a variety of systems is sometimes challenging but at the same time it gives me an excellent opportunity to learn about a variety of systems and their integration. In addition to programming, I love to use my teaching skills to write documentation about Nexus Link services and share the knowledge with new members in our team.
What does this job mean to you?
My job means a lot to me. It helped me to build my identity in the Swedish society. I do not measure my career progress by financial income, instead by new skills and experience that I earn with each new project at work.
Johan Stålnacke, Head of Digital Business Platform development at XLENT Link
What kind of qualities and skills do you look for in your employees?
We look for exceptional individuals with great curiosity and ability to learn fast. Being a consultant often presents you with new challenges on a daily basis and being comfortable not knowing the all the answers, while being able to find out fast, is important. A good sense of service and some people skills are also good to have. All this, of course, on top of the having right skill set for your role.
What was it that Imtiaz did or said to make you think he is the right fit for the job?
Imtiaz showed great curiosity from the first day we met. Asking questions and being genuinely interested in what we do. And he impressed by being able to, very quickly, grasp our fairly complex business model and, more importantly, our technical domain and delivery.
Did Imtiaz live up to your expectations?
Very much so. With a long background from the university world as an IT-lecturer, he wanted to pursue a more active career as a developer. The assignments we take on are not in any way simple, but he has proven to be the fast learner we expected him to be and he is on his way to quickly establish himself as a very competent developer.
Why did you decide to collaborate with Novare Potential and are you happy with the outcome?
Novare Potential represents an opportunity to access skilled people that we normally have difficulties finding. People that bring not only great skills, but also different views of the world, something that we really appreciate! We are very happy with our thriving collaboration with Novare Potential!