Klarna’s continued success depends on how well we attract and develop exceptional talent. Our 12 month engineering graduate program is designed to give young engineers the tools and knowledge they need to shine. In preparation for this year’s application process, we sat down with Jiecong Yang, Java engineer and current graduate, to talk about his first year at Klarna.
We of course want to hear what it is you do at Klarna. But before we begin, what would you say is your biggest flex as a Java developer?
As everyone working with Java knows, the ecosystem is quite powerful, with many open-source mature frameworks, tools and libraries. I’d say my biggest flex is my proficiency with Springboot. Especially since it’s one of the most popular Java frameworks.
If Java was a celebrity, whom would it be and why?
Madonna. People always talk about who will take her place as the queen of pop. Fact is — it might never happen. She’s an icon and her music remains as relevant and popular as ever (almost).
Java is the Madonna of programming. There have been many attempts to design a language that will dethrone Java as one of the most popular programming languages. But despite being released over 27 years ago, and despite all the competition, Java is still one of the most appreciated programming languages. Especially here at Klarna! An icon, frankly.
Now, please tell us a bit about your journey at Klarna. What have you been cooking on?
Joining Klarna, I was first appointed to the pipelines team. Our job was to allow more time for engineers to focus on their code by giving them an easy-to-use CI/CD process. Make their lives easier, basically.
My duties allowed me to play around with Golang and together with the team I developed an internal CI service for an effortless CI/CD experience. Besides that, we also managed the Jenkins EKS cluster, keeping it up-to-date and ensuring that it followed all the rules and regulations. And whenever something went wrong with Jenkins, we were the go-to people for fixing broken pipelines.
For the second part of the graduate program, I rotated to the Interledger Transactions team, responsible for providing simple APIs for global money movement. This is where I am today. Right now I’m working on a Java Springboot backend that can schedule money transfers all over the world. Not as easy as it might sound, taking things like different currencies and payment networks into account. In fact, when you get into it, it’s actually pretty complicated stuff — which is also what makes it fun! Plus, it feels good to know that we’re making the world a little bit better each day by making the process of moving money around more convenient. Or smoooth, maybe I should say.
Thank you. In true ChatGPT fashion, let’s simplify that a bit. Here’s another prompt: Explain your job as you would to a 5 year old.
I create things on a computer. Think of it like Lego. With Lego, you use small, plastic bricks to build things. I also use bricks, but my bricks are digital — in the computer — and called objects. These digital bricks are collected from different boxes. One of my boxes is called “Spring”. Right now, I’m using the bricks to build a post office for Klarna. And from the post office, we will be able to send money all over the world.
Finally, what is your favorite part about working at Klarna?
I’d like to highlight three things, actually.
Number one: Our flexible policy around remote work. The fact that I’m not required to go to the office unless it’s necessary saves me a lot of time on my commute. It’s also pretty cool to have the option of becoming a digital nomad for several weeks of I want to.
Secondly, the people. My colleagues are really helpful and supportive, and the senior engineers are taking time to (patiently) coach me when needed. It makes life here easy.
Lastly, the company’s attitude towards new tech. Klarna was to my knowledge one of the first companies to collaborate with OpenAI, and to release a ChatGPT plugin. It’s an open-minded environment, which gives us engineers the opportunity to learn state-of-the-art technologies before anyone else.