Welcome to the elephant handbook. Our resumé, manifesto, vision and guide to life at Thinslices.

Daily reality starts here.

This handbook covers some of the key elements of the Thinslices culture: what our vision and values are, how we're organised, how we work, and some of the principles we follow.

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Debate. Discuss. Engage.

 

Always accountable.

We act according to the following values. This is how we treat each other, our clients and our partners.

+ Entrepreneurial

Change is the only constant. Embrace it!

Every pain is an opportunity

Be part of the solution

+ Team players

Care for your teammate

Lend a hand

Win together

+ Open

Sweep nothing under the rug

Empower by sharing information

Be receptive to feedback and new ideas

+ Engineering mindset

Find the root cause (ask the 5 whys)

Plan before you act

Solve like an engineer

+ Diligent

Take commitment seriously

Be hardworking

Go the extra mile

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Great teams, great results.

We’ve developed the entire company around project teams who build and deliver world-class technology products to our clients. They are backed up by management and support teams.

Instead of organizing team members into departments, we create high-performance teams based on a unique combination of people attributes and the Agile mindset:

+ People Attributes

Love for tech

Resilience & grit

Adaptability & low resistance to change

Self-development & drive

Humor

Courage

Enthusiasm

Altruism

+ Agile Mindset

Satisfy the customer's needs through early and continuous delivery of valuable software.

Welcome changing requirements, even late in development.

Deliver working software frequently, from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, with a preference to the shorter timescale.

Work together daily throughout the project with business people.

Convey information to and within a development team through face-to-face conversation.

Promote sustainable development. The sponsors, developers, and users should be able to maintain a constant pace indefinitely.

Pay continuous attention to technical excellence and good design.

Reflect at regular intervals on how to become more effective, then tune and adjust behavior accordingly.

We don’t like things to be too formal. We are all one team and our success is dependent on collaboration.

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Elephant life is good!

  • Private medical insurance
  • Learning events & certifications
  • Bookster subscription (RO)
  • Headspace subscription
  • Company therapist
  • Emergency days (unlimited)
  • Financial bonuses
  • Extra vacation days

We hold regular events and gatherings that are elephant-driven, so they're not mandatory or awkward. We have a weekly book club, social coffee meetups, courses and workshops - as well as the annual teambuilding and Christmas party.

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Software Professional Manifesto.

The Thinslices Software Developer understands and adheres to this manifesto. They are T-Shaped Software Developers, Responsible Engineers, Software Craftsmen.

+ Know what you are building

You should understand your client, their needs, their environment and always try to give them the best solution that you can think of.

+ Don’t be a code monkey!

Don’t deliver bad products. Under no circumstances will we ship something that doesn’t work. No schedule will make us do this, no yelling manager will make us do this. If it is crap we will not ship it!

+ Write clean and maintainable code

When you write code you should take into consideration possible scenarios that will change requirements of the product. These changes shouldn’t end up into a rewrite or impossible estimations. You must not give horrible estimates and you must not let the system reach a point where redesign is a must!

+ Don’t be afraid to tackle any challenge

When you see something in the code that is wrong, clean it instantly without fear, without hesitation. You should clean and refactor the code with fearlessness and competence!

+ Quality should be your goal

You should go home every night and look in the mirror and say: “Man, I did an awesome job today!”. You should always know that you did the best job that you could do!

+ Give honest estimates

The most honest estimate is I don’t know. You should find out what you don’t know and provide the range of the estimation. People rely on your estimates!

+ Learn to say “No”

You were hired because you think before taking action. You are the ones who know and the only ones who have the knowledge to say No. When you say Yes you make a promise and you will do whatever it takes to deliver on it. The worst is to say “I will try”!

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Feedback is a gift.

Feedback has nothing to do with hierarchy. Anyone can and should give feedback to anyone. Feedback is not judgment, nor is it an absolute truth.

Feedback is someone that cares enough to tell you what they think about a situation you were in, in the hope that you’ll find the information useful. They may not have all the facts and they may not have interpreted some things accurately. That’s fine, they’re not saying you suck, they’re just calling it as they see it, from their point of view. It’s always better for you to know what they think, rather than to not know.

Thank the colleague who gave you feedback and remember to return the favour when you can. The best feedback is short, given on the spot and specific.

Praise in public, criticise in private.

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Improve and innovate.

Learning is a big concept and it means different things to different people. We all have our learning styles, preferences and routines.

One of the best ways to learn is on the job. Along with our clients, we value skills above roles. Skills that create value are the basis for performance, career development and salaries in Thinslices.

Each role has a list of skills that create value. But the list isn't static just as the market isn't static. Skills that created value 5 years ago have evolved, some have even disappeared or have been replaced by new ones. Here are some skills we currently look at:

+ Soft skills

Time management

Estimate work items

Break work items into sub-tasks

Deal with uncertainty and get shit done

Understand and communicate requirements

Act, Speak and Think as a Professional

Software Developer as described in Clean Coder

+ Software engineering skills

Refactoring

Unit testing and TDD

Implement well known software design patterns

Solve problems and implement algorithms using TypeScript, JavaScript

Apply clean code principles as described in Clean Code (there is no other version of clean code, so read the book)

+ Web Services skills

Design and implement RESTful APIs for web services

Design and implement GraphQL APIs for web services

+ AWS skills

Define and deploy monitoring, metrics, and logging systems on AWS

Implement systems that are highly available, scalable, and self-healing on the AWS platform

Identify key features of AWS services and use the AWS service APIs, AWS CLI, and SDKs to write applications

Develop, deploy, and debug cloud-based services using AWS and writing code for serverless applications using CDK

Identify which AWS services meet a given technical requirement and define technical requirements for an AWS-based application

+ React & Web Apps skills

Document React UI components using Storybook

Write tests for React UI components and pages

Design and implement React UI components and layouts

Design and implement Web SPAs with React

+ React Native & Mobile Apps skills

Interact with and use native APIs

Write tests for mobile UI components and pages

Troubleshoot and debug compilation and build issues

Design and implement Mobile applications using React-Native

Design and implement Mobile (Android, iOS) UI components and layouts using React-Native

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Think like a business.

We believe in giving people autonomy - and not just to tick a box. All our teams have autonomy on how they deliver a project, assign tasks, and onboard new team members.

Regardless of the team or project you're on, as an elephant, you're responsible for your experience. That means contributing with ideas, taking ownership of tasks, making decisions on matters you're accountable for, reaching out to other colleagues who can help you deliver your objectives. So no excuses. We're all here to learn, grow, deliver quality, and create value.

We're a team. We look out for each other, and we all contribute to making Thinslices an amazing company to work with.

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