The Value of Having a Problem-Solving Mindset at Cledara

I recently joined Cledara as a Software Engineer and I wanted to share my unique experience with you.
The Value of Having a Problem-Solving Mindset at Cledara

Regardless of size, continent or industry, I think there’s a universal truth for most companies: they are trying to solve problems for their customers, and they need competent, engaged people to solve them. 

I believe it’s not enough to simply match skills on a resume with some wishlist written in a meeting.

After all, an excellent candidate may pass on a job opening because one of the bullet points was missing in his or her experience. Internalizing this fact is key to shape the recruiting process, and focus on what really matters for the position.

A recruitment process I actually enjoyed

The recruitment process for Cledara was the first one I actually enjoyed during my career. I was not actively looking for a new position, yet Brad, the COO and co-founder, reached out to me asking for a brief chat. This alone was highly valuable to me. It’s not every day that you hear from the founder of a high-growth startup with an immense potential. 

Moreover, the emphasis of the interview was on problem solving. Among other topics, we discussed technologies used at Cledara and my experience with them…but there was barely any overlap. Yet, to my surprise, I was offered to go through a technical interview the next day.

During the interview the focus was never the technology. It was mainly about 3 aspects: 

  • Interpersonal skills: being able to communicate with the team, and not only at a technical level
  • Attitude: owning issues and proactively being involved in the product
  • And of course, problem solving

I’ve worked with multiple technologies during my career, and I knew I could learn a new one. Iñigo, a developer at Cledara who also interviewed me, knew it too. In fact, before joining Cledara as a software developer, he was an architect, so he was perfectly aware that technical stacks are just tools that can be learnt.

During the interview, I showed how I would solve problems, working as I normally do. This interview style was ultimately what made me choose Cledara. In just a few hours I saw that it was a company that treated their employees as adults, and trusted them. 

Being a software engineer in 2022

Software engineering has changed dramatically over the last couple of decades. Long gone are the days when every developer was reinventing the wheel on a daily basis, solving specific issues that had been tackled by hundreds, if not thousands, of developers before them. 

Nowadays software engineers have access to plug-and-play modules, online documentation, technical problem platforms, etc. This means that today software engineers are more than just algorithm writers, they need to understand the bigger picture, the product, solve more abstract problems, and think about the software design.

And that’s what I like about working at Cledara. We take on the challenges faced by our clients when dealing with SaaS subscriptions, understand their needs entirely, and improve our product. At the end of the day, that makes us better engineers.

The first two months  

After just 2 months at Cledara, I have already faced a few interesting problems and have made meaningful contributions to the team –- all while ramping up on the product and company. I have worked on a variety of topics, ranging from improving the onboarding process for companies and adapting it to the specific regulations of the different regions, to changing the logic of how credit limits are set for our US customers. 

Yes, there was a learning curve due to the lack of experience in the technology, but that was rather quickly outgrown, and there was no bottleneck in productivity like many companies fear.

Career Advice 

In conclusion, a tip I can share for other people looking for their next opportunity based on my experience joining Cledara is to steer away from boxed hiring processes based on a shopping list of job requirements.

Look instead for offers that appreciate your skills beyond the specific technologies you currently are experienced in. Show you are a problem solver that can efficiently use the publicly available tools. Prove that you don’t just tick boxes and that your personality fits the company values. Keep only the offers that make you feel valued, as this is a 2-way relationship. If this resonates with you, keep an eye on the job openings at Cledara. We are growing very fast, and we’re looking for more problem solvers. 

Final tip: if you visit our offices, feel free to bring chocolate since we all love chocolate!

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Jenny Liu
Head of Finance @ Marshmallow

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