Behind the Scenes at Smallfish: Creating a Recipe for Tech Success

At Smallfish, we’re a tight-knit team. We’re passionate about providing our customers with a simple and affordable way to get ahead with an online business. Being a part of the Smallfish community is more than just setting up an online store – it’s about joining a network of enterprising businesses that are all committed to fostering success. This vision drives our own work at Smallfish, as we strive to provide the tools that enable your business to grow. In this article, we present a behind the scenes view of how things are run at Smallfish HQ.

Want to know our recipe for tech success? It’s simple: start with some highly experienced developers, add some fresh new talent, mix well and enjoy! We spoke to Aneesha, our intern software developer, who has been working closely with our in-house developers. She’s enjoying being a part of the Smallfish family (even if it means complying with company breakfast policy!) and learning many things along the way to kickstart her IT career.

What do you study and what do you do at Smallfish?

I’m in my fourth and final year of a Bachelor of Business Information Systems specialising in Business Management. At Smallfish, I am an intern software developer, mostly working on building websites, adjusting content and styling pages with a little bit of jQuery chucked in for good measure.

What do you love about software development?

I never saw myself being a software developer, but now I don’t see myself doing anything else! I love it because there’s so much to learn. Technology is forever changing which means we always have to be on our toes. Technology has always been a passion of mine; since primary school I’ve enjoyed playing with and building computers, and taking part in computer groups and workshops. I love that there is a big push towards more women entering into the technology industry which is encouraging.

How would you describe the work environment at Smallfish?

It’s very lively – sharing an open office means everyone is close to each other and there is a lot of banter amongst the team. I sit next to Craig and I tend to bug him with all my issues (pun intended). A lot of the time, you can hear someone muttering at their computer and then five minutes later they let out an exuberant cry of joy because they’ve got the result they were after. It’s quite amusing, no doubt I’ll be doing it subconsciously soon too!

Working in a small business, you get to know everyone quite well. It’s like a little family; everybody has their place at the table. It really creates a sense of unity – I think that’s the best part. We enjoy going out for social occasions too – when the company was in it’s early stages and didn’t have an office space, the guys would often have breakfast meetings at Fidel’s Cafe. So a while ago we all went there for a company breakfast. The newbies like myself learned that everyone had always ordered eggs benedict and bacon, and things weren’t about to change! Despite being assured we could order what we liked, we all followed the tradition and got eggs benedict and bacon. The waitress must have thought we were quite unimaginative! There’s also a foosball table in the office that, up until now, was used to balance a whiteboard on, so I think it’s about time for a tournament!

The Smallfish team out for lunch

From left: Aneesha, Craig, Andrew and Shane out for a team lunch in sunny Wellington

How has working at Smallfish helped you develop your skills?

It’s helped immensely because I’m able to take what I have learned at university and apply this knowledge to real-life business projects and tasks. My skills have developed as tasks get more complex, so I am constantly learning. Every day brings a new challenge; some tasks I tackle on my own, others I get guidance from my brilliant mentors Craig, Shane and Andrew. The work experience is invaluable for a career in IT, and I’m really lucky to learn from such an experienced and friendly bunch of people. The great thing is that as technology changes, Smallfish adapts and evolves too. I hope I can continue to work on making the service even better than it already is and I really think it has the potential to grow in a big way.

Wellington is the perfect city for working in the IT sector. What’s your favourite thing to do in Wellington?

I love the Friday Night Market down the Left Bank Arcade, off Cuba Street. It’s very vibrant and full of delicious and interesting-looking food. My tried and true favourite would have to be Panda Hats which are dumplings in a hot and spicy soup. I love living in Wellington where everything is so close; I get to live, study, work and play in the coolest little capital in the world!

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