Segment Service POC and first month at Sangam

Atul Aditya/ November 25, 2020/ Culture, Engineering, Web


Who am I?

Hello there!

I am Atul Aditya and I joined team Sangam in June as an SDE, and was straight away given a POC to complete on my own using any of the available technologies I was comfortable with.


I would like to share my experience as a fresh addition to the Sangam team of Shaadi.com, the fastest-growing matchmaking startup serving parents seeking partners for their children.

Getting started

During my interviews I interacted with multiple managers – they were all insightful and surprisingly fun. The questions they asked gave me a glimpse of the inner workings of Sangam. These interactive experiences really had an impact on me due to the connection I felt and gave me glimpses of a really cool culture. I loved the leadership team already!

Prior to this, I had little experience with good leaders and some cool tech guys who kicked ass at what they do, but here the whole game was different. Everyone I spoke to is so easily approachable making me go “wow” every time. But the cherry on top is YOU can own a whole product, YOU can choose your own tech, and YOU are the one giving the plan of action for completion. This was new to me and I feel excited about it.  

First Project

As soon as I joined, I got an opportunity to work on my maiden project for Sangam. I enjoyed the first day where I had a dockable with my name on it having all the relevant links and well defined project details. The project was about categorising users which belong to different segments of a given criteria.

eg. there’s a feature you want to display to male members in the range of  25-31 year old, who speak English and are software engineers – so this service will identify how many different segments (a segment is a group of users clubbed together on a certain criteria), will be satisfying the above criteria, i.e males aged between 25-31 who speak English and are software engineer.

The first thing that stood out to me here was that I was asked to write down all possible cases, scenarios, and challenges that I could think of in this project.

Now, I was not familiar with such an approach for writing and application. Earlier I used to always start out by listing major TODOs and then writing for the app. But this approach was very different and I do realise the importance of it.

So currently, the process for categorising different segments for different users and the  entire flow is manual, and I was brought in to automate this use case.
 
This problem was a typical data store (elastic search) problem but I had no relevant experience in this. My manager asked me how I would approach this and asked me to think of the most basic method. I got working on it using Mongodb, Java – Spring Boot.

Due to my lack of experience in writing a production level application from scratch, I faced some really tough challenges  – like how to parse various parameters to a common structure. Or how many operators were being used or how to break them down – we had on long calls at odd hours to discuss these challenges.

One interesting and valuable learning for me was that I was asked to write down everything!

Any idea or solution had to be documented because it provided a clear definition of the problem while documenting it. Moreover if I needed help I could straightaway pass the document to the review and ask relevant questions. I realised how writing things down, helped me structure my thoughts better.


This is one of the major learnings from my first project which has contributed to great improvements in my working style.  Of course my technical depth has significantly increased during this project and coding for it, as I was guided by some amazing people with a lot of valuable tech insights. The reviews and feedback after the project have changed the way I used to approach a technical problem and have made me more confident about myself and how to get things done.

So good, so far!

The time that I have spent here so far has thoroughly enriched my experience and I feel more connected to the team.  The culture here is what everyone really dreams of.

We have our regular Friday sessions where we play, laugh and chill, and these are some really precious moments for us that refresh and rejuvenate us. 

On the work front , I have been given an entire product (a really important one!) THE PAYMENT MICROSERVICE all to myself and the coolest part is that it will be used by both Shaadi and Sangan. I am really excited about working on it, it has been almost 2 months since I began. We are developing it in Golang  (the most talked about language in the last couple of years) which is awesome again!

peek-a-boo!

How’s the josh?

The Sangam team is very vibrant and has a startup-like vibe. I feel very fortunate to be a part of them. The energy, culture and the team dynamics are quite positive. It’s been about a couple of months, and we are very comfortable talking frankly about our problems and tech issues.  

At the end of every day, we all get on a call where we just goof around with each other for a while – strictly no work-related topics. I find it to be a real stress-buster especially in such times where the remote setting makes one feel truly distant. Especially joining new and bonding well with the team feels like a blessing since it just makes all work easier. 

So overall I think it’s gonna be an amazing time here at Sangam and…