A Day in the Life: David Antaramian (Software Engineer, PepsiCo Global eCommerce)

Headshot photo of David Antaramian
David Antaramian

What has been your journey in tech so far?

I landed in tech by accident. After I graduated college I was applying to office and administrative roles to take a break on academics before applying to graduate school for religious studies. A friend reached out to me — I wasn’t getting very many responses on my applications — and suggested I talk with his co-workers who were building anew application for social recommendations.

What has been the biggest challenge you’ve face moving into your current role?

Growth, both in terms of hiring and then dealing with the increase in the number of people. Hiring an engineering team has a lot of layers to it: we had to figure out candidate sourcing, the technical screening, and the interview process. After each interview we’d refine the process a bit. We also had to work on how we pitched the company and team to the candidates we were targeting. Working all of this into the existing structure PepsiCo already had was a massive change from the blank slate I had experienced at startups before.

Briefly describe your stack and workflow

We’ve been building our applications at PepsiCo eCommerce on a mix of Elixir for application logic, Python for data engineering, and JavaScript/TypeScript for user interface. We’ve also been introducing GraphQL as a standard for APIs: the native introspection capability helps reduce friction when developing.

What does your typical day look like?

I’m still working on what “typical” looks like for me. The one constant in my day is standup at 1PM ET.

What’s the best and worst part of your job?

The best part is the people. We’ve got so many talented people across the organization, and it’s amazing to be around them.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received?

To go home. My second job out of college, my manager would turn the lights off when she left at 5pm and tell me it was time to go home. It made me appreciate the balance between work and life and not to let one become too much of the other.

What is your most useful resource?

Twitter has yielded a lot of rich material for me over the years. I can rely on my friends to surface particularly interesting links or threads.

What’s one thing you’d like to learn, develop or work on in 2020?

Saying “no” more often. I easily get into situations where I’ve over-extended myself, and I’m working to focus more on quality over quantity.

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