Introducing Nexxen Kickstart: Our Transformative Engineering Bootcamp

Introducing Nexxen Kickstart: Our Transformative Engineering Bootcamp

In the realm of software engineering, years of experience is a double-edged sword. While seasoned engineers come with a treasure trove of knowledge and skills, they also carry ingrained habits and thought patterns that don’t necessarily align with a new organization’s culture or methodology.

At Nexxen, we chose to address this challenge directly and created a program for newly hired, less experienced engineers. We call this program “Nexxen Kickstart” – an innovative bootcamp focusing on the internal tools and processes of our organization rather than on specific programming languages. A year into this novel venture, we’re thrilled to share the astounding success of this program and its positive ripple effects on our engineering organization as a whole. The Selection Journey

Kicking off the Nexxen Kickstart program was a significant endeavor. With a thousand CVs on our table, we wanted to select the most suitable new engineers for our team. We shortlisted 500 of them for an online test, covering areas like problem-solving, Java, SQL, and JavaScript. This allowed us to measure both their technical skills and their approach to challenges.

From the test results, 40 candidates were invited to our office. We arranged it so that ten candidates visited each day, ensuring we could spend quality time with everyone. At the office, they tackled a Java task, which assessed how they planned, coded, and then how receptive they were to feedback. But it wasn’t just about their coding skills. We also wanted to see if they’d fit into Nexxen’s culture, so the standout performers had a chat with our HR team.

At the end of each day, our team gathered to discuss the day’s candidates. From these discussions, we identified the top ten new software engineers who not only had the skills but also seemed like a good fit for our company’s values and mission.

The Bootcamp

Nexxen Kickstart is an intensive two-week program designed to put the participants through rigorous training. Conducted by our top engineers, the bootcamp offered not just indispensable knowledge but also a chance for the newcomers to get acquainted with the Nexxen team. By focusing on the tools and processes utilized within our organization, we ensured that the participants gained a thorough understanding of our workflow. This strategic approach allowed them to adapt swiftly and make substantial contributions to the team, without the need to invest time in mastering new programming languages.

Key Insights from Nexxen Kickstart

  • Emphasize Internal Processes and Tools: We focused on the tools and processes specific to our organization, arming the participants with a deep understanding of our operations. This approach proved to be highly effective as our Kickstart graduates seamlessly integrated into our engineering team, delivering outputs that exceeded our expectations for their experience level.
  • Promote Peer Learning and Collaboration: The bootcamp underscored the importance of teamwork and collaboration, fostering strong bonds among the participants. This sense of camaraderie carried into the workplace, with Kickstart graduates forming a close-knit group that continues to work together efficiently and support each other. Moreover, having engineers from different teams with strong relationships has fostered a greater sense of unity among our teams.

  • Commit to Ongoing Growth and Development: Upon the conclusion of the bootcamp, the participants were assigned to different teams based on their strengths, needed areas of improvement, and the organization’s requirements. This enabled us to match each junior developer with an appropriate lead, ensuring they receive the necessary support for their success. We have remained committed to the growth and development of our Kickstart engineers by providing mentorship, training, and opportunities to broaden their skillsets. As a result, they’ve surpassed expectations and have become invaluable members of our team.

Nexxen Kickstart has been an overwhelming triumph for our engineering organization. The program’s unique emphasis on internal tooling and processes, facilitated by our experienced engineers, has empowered these new engineers to quickly become pivotal members of the team, contributing significantly beyond their experience level. We’re immensely proud of the impact Nexxen Kickstart has made on our organization and look forward to continuing this program of innovation and success.

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