I applied for Dorset Software as the graduate roles sounded really appealing, and it seemed like an ideal transition into the technology industry from university, especially having minimal prior experience in programming. The fact that a small percentage of employees come from a computer science related background made me feel a lot more confident about the whole procedure.
The application process was really smooth and responsive; after applying online I had a friendly telephone call to get to know me further and learn a bit about my degree. Shortly after that I was invited to an interview day down in Poole, where you meet some members of staff and they give you a picture into day-to-day life at the company. I found the interview itself to be really insightful, and they don’t pounce on you with any sneaky, technical questions. It’s also a great opportunity to have a look around Poole and get to know the area, and maybe hit up the beach if the weather’s nice! Within a week of the interview I received my offer to start the following month.
Right from the off you’re assigned a mentor who offers support with your training, as well as any other aspect of life at Dorset Software. During the training you learn a range of programming concepts, such as C#, SQL Database, and HTML. I found these training courses thorough and challenging, and you really feel like you’ve learnt something new every day. Also, with my mentor’s assistance and regular progress meetings, I never felt too overwhelmed or out of my depth.
Once training has finished, you’ll move onto a real project; either in-house or on client site. These projects can be anything from fixing bugs in an existing system, to programming entirely new software from scratch. My first client site was at an international financial service company, working on actuarial modelling and risk management software. This was an exciting opportunity to experience working at a larger company, and Dorset Software made the transition really easy, sorting out all the accommodation and travel arrangements I needed.
My favourite part of Dorset Software is the working atmosphere, and how easy it felt to integrate within the company. Because most people join as graduates, you’re surrounded by like-minded, friendly people, and there are several social and sporting activities to take part in outside of work. The office is an open and relaxed environment, set in a really nice location, and this combined with the free fruit and biscuits on offer makes it a great place to work!