A day in the life of a Brick: Mobile app developer Arthur

Clay’s mobile app developer Arthur is responsible for overall architecture and realization of all Clay mobile applications on iOS and Android

Arthur is a young dad that raises two lovely girls with his equally lovely girlfriend in Bilthoven, Utrecht. Besides running a busy household and a high demanding fulltime job at Clay, Arthur also teaches body combat in his spare time and manages to always see the positive side of things!

A Day in the Life of Arthur

Since ‘How does he do it?’ is a frequently asked question at the Clay office, we wanted to give you a peek in the life of this particular Brick.

Take a look!

05:50 The alarm clock goes off far too early, but that way I’ll be able to come home in time to enjoy my girls!

06:31 Take the train to Amsterdam, and watch an episode of my favourite show Stranger Things on Netflix during the trip.

07:30 Arrive at the office, load the dishwasher and make my much-needed coffee.

07:45 At Clay we like hot-desking, so I pick a desk for the day and set up my gear. I check my email and boot up Slack; a very handy tool we use for internal communication on projects and fun stuff, to see if I have any important messages.

08:00 Check the app statistics to see if there were any crashes in need of some love and support.

08:30 The Atlassian board displays issues from one or more projects, allowing a flexible way of viewing, managing and reporting work in progress and pick up the next story. I boot up xCode or Android Studio depending on the story and get to work.

10:00 Finish up the story and create a pull request for one of my fellow developer Bricks to review.

12:00 When our (beer) bell rings I know its time for our daily standup. All the Bricks gather to tell each other what they are working on. The stand up is a good way to have a daily reminder we all work together to reach a higher goal.

12:30 Lunch is served! It’s nice to see the grilled cheese is still the winning lunch at Clay!

13:00 Play a game of pool with one of my colleagues!

13:15 Do some refactoring on the pull request to get it approved, then build a beta-version for Q&A.

14:00 Discuss changes in UI with our UI/UX designer Ad

14:30 Do some grooming for the next sprint

15:30 Review some pull requests for my colleagues

16:00 Q&A Engineer Latha found no issues: This is what we like to call ‘Latha approved’ at Clay, this means the code can be merged to the develop branch. Latha even got a ‘Latha approves’ stamp (her giving thumbs up!) at the annual Christmas dinner!

16:40 When I finished my tasks for the day and I’m ready to go, I gather my stuff and walk to the train. There’s a beautiful sunset and the Amsterdam canals look magical!

17:05 Take the train back home after a very productive and satisfying day!

Thank you Arthur for showing us a glimpse of your life!

Do you like this type of a working day? Then you are in for a treat, because we’re in search of a second Mobile app developer! Take a look at our career page and #becomeabrick!

We are looking forward to see more niche coworking spaces that contribute to more diversity!

A Day in the Life of Arthur

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SALTO KS provides a flexible access control management system that requires no software installation or the added expense of a fully-wired electronic product. Modern cloud-based, wireless access control system is easy and simple to use for businesses including Coworking Spaces, Coliving Buildings, Purpose Built Student Accommodation, Retail, Multi-Tenant Housing, Gyms and many more. Our best in class wireless access control solution and smart locks guarantee the efficiency for your business. Integrate smart locks, start easily managing wireless access control now!

The Intern Diaries: ICT software engineering & cyber security intern Dane

Last August Dane started his ICT Software engineering & Cyber security internship at Clay. Because we are always curious how interns perceive Clay we asked him all about his #lifeatclay including if the internships matched his expectations and how he foresees his own future career path! Read with us!

So Dane, explain our readers: Who is Dane? Hi, I’m Dane, a young Software Engineering student from “all the way down south” Maastricht. Or as some at Clay might say: Belgium. I was born and raised in Maastricht. A “sjeng” as the locals would say. But as both my parents are from different regions within the Netherlands and I sometimes despise the local dialect, I never became a real "sjeng". When I was really young I had a keen interest in computer technology and yes, of course, the games you could play on them. As I grew older I taught myself how to operate computers and manage them in networks. This resulted in a fun but fairly expensive hobby for my mother as she was the one paying the electric bills. Sorry mum!

Dane

Why Clay? Soon I began to realise I wanted to pursue my hobby and follow proper education in the field of computer/information science. One thing led to another and eventually I found myself in the fifth semester of Software Engineering at the Fontys University in Eindhoven. In this semester students are required to find and apply for their first internship. By that time I had no idea what I was looking for until Babet, Irem and Vladimir from Clay held a presentation about cultural diversity within software development teams and their companies core values. This intrigued me as I took part in an international school project where I collaborated with foreign students from Finland. The fond memories I have from that time motivated me to try and apply for an internship at Clay. And so it began...

What particular aspect do you like best of your internship? This might be the easiest question as it can be answered in two words, the Bricks. Everyone that works at Clay is a fun and unique individual with their own habits, quirks and culture. During my time at Clay as an intern, I made a lot of new friends with whom I could party and share a beer on Friday afternoons. And of course, the enormous amount of knowledge passed down from the always ready-to-help developers.

> Dane

How would you describe the 'Clay culture'? The company culture is as I had never seen before. The office is equipped with a pool table, football table and even a table tennis table! Everybody is free to choose their workplace which is great if you had enough of sitting on your butt all day and want to stand straight for a change. During my time at Clay there were numerous group events and parties that have strengthened the bond with my colleagues. Oh, and don’t forget the office-wide nerf battles that can break out at any time during the day. You've been warned!

What were the down parts of your internship at Clay? I’m inclined to say that a positive change would be to make my internship last longer. But of course, this wouldn't be possible from my universities viewpoint. In all seriousness: I really am unable to find a specific flaw in the way my internship took place at Clay. If I would change anything about this internship program it would have to do with the required procedures enforced by the university itself.

Dane

Did your internship match your expectations? I don’t know why but I never expected that an internship could be so much fun, even though I researched Clay online and read up on all their blog posts. The job itself was challenging in some ways, which wasn't really a big surprise taking the complex product developed at Clay into account. But with these challenges came great learning opportunities, precisely what I wanted from my internship. I was able to learn about the agile way software is developed by naturally becoming part of the team. It was a nice change from the standard procedures taught at my university, something I secretly suspected ?.

What will be your next step? The time spent at Clay confirmed my intuition that I found the correct field in which I should study and eventually work. I feel I have improved in both my technical and professional skills during the past few months, and I have Clay to thank for it. Now I want to improve myself even further and continue this path of becoming a software engineer to find my dream job. But before I can start this adventure I’ll have to graduate first!

Dane, thank you so much for your honest answers and being part of the family! You'll always be welcome at the office, but don't forget to bring your own nerfgun ?

Are you looking for an internship where you can grow and find your passion like Dane did? Check out our job openings and you might #becomeabrick!

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SALTO KS provides a flexible access control management system that requires no software installation or the added expense of a fully-wired electronic product. Modern cloud-based, wireless access control system is easy and simple to use for businesses including Coworking Spaces, Coliving Buildings, Purpose Built Student Accommodation, Retail, Multi-Tenant Housing, Gyms and many more. Our best in class wireless access control solution and smart locks guarantee the efficiency for your business. Integrate smart locks, start easily managing wireless access control now!

The Intern Diaries: Marketing intern Sezim

July 2018 Sezim started her marketing internship at Clay. Find out if her #lifeatclay has met her expectations and whether she will pursue a career in marketing when her adventure in the world of access control ends (for now)!

Sezim, could you tell our readers a little bit more about your background? My name is Sezim, but at Clay I am known as Sezimtje 🙂 I was born and raised in Central Asia. Currently, I am residing in the beautiful city of Amsterdam as a Marketing Intern at Clay. The Holland Scholarship of the Dutch Ministry of Education has brought me all the way from Kazakhstan to the Netherlands where I was lucky enough to discover my second home. I am a recent graduate with a Master’s degree in Business Administration and with a minor specialization in cat whispering 😉 (I love cats) I can’t say I have anything particular to inform our readers about besides this: I am a typical scholarship kid who enjoys having diverse academic and professional experience regardless of country borders, language barriers and cultural differences, which I found at Clay!

Sezim

How did you find out about this internship at Clay? After my online search for internships, I stumbled upon an interesting job posting at the recruitment platform 'KnappeKoppen'. The internship in Marketing offered by Clay looked promising for two reasons: 1) the creative nature of the tasks that were offered and 2) the opportunity to work in a high-tech scale up. The job post itself was very engaging and caught my attention right away.

What were the pro's and the cons of being an intern at Clay? I am always motivated by the high level of expertise and knowledge of each employee or 'Brick' (that is how the employees at Clay call themselves). When you are working around high-performing commercial talent, software architects and developers, there is no way for you to get behind or deliver at a lower performance. I see how inspired and driven my colleagues are and how new product versions are being tested in front of my eyes and I see how large commercial projects are initiated right here at the office. Deep knowledge and a diverse set of skills are what makes Clay an exciting place to be. I also enjoyed the hectic environment of the office due to the quick expansion of Clay’s operations. And last, but not least, the neighbourhood cat Bram always brightened my Monday mornings!

With regards to the cons: I would suggest comprehensive training for new employees on how to use a nerf gun efficiently 🙂 We had large-scale wars with non-stop shooting and bullets all over the office space. And for unknown reasons, I was a frequent target! 😉

Sezim

How do you look back on the culture within Clay? Besides the high level of expertise mentioned above, I would say that the Bricks make the company’s culture. It is a tightly-knit community of people who come from all over the world, possessing solid knowledge and skills plus quirky habits. Your workflow might be interrupted by Niels's “Wohoo” which means that our infrastructure is stable or sounds of rock-n-roll coming from the speakers. Our lunch breaks are never boring and I have become proficient with developers jokes and the language of sarcasm, which is always a good skill to have!

Can you tell us more about your day-to-day tasks at Clay? Since I have been involved in both Marketing and Sales tasks, I've had a variety of responsibilities. I enjoyed writing articles for both our websites (my-clay.com and saltoks.com) about Industry 4.0, the gig-economy and the Future of Work amongst other subjects, which allowed me to attract the interest of many blogging communities initiating partnerships. I was responsible for sales activities such as qualification and delegation of sales prospects which gave me the opportunity to understand the structure and relationship between SALTO Business Units worldwide. My work has had an effect on the way how potential customers’ requests were handled and how fast and efficient sales teams responded to the requests.

Sezim

You are at the forefront of your career. What will be your next move? The next step for me is to get my diploma and start my career path in the Graduate Management Traineeship Program, preferably in Sales. My internship at Clay showed me the specifications of relationship-building with potential customers and how important a proactive approach is. When I look back at myself 7 months ago, my communication and technical skills have definitely improved a lot.

Is there any advice you could give to the one who will fill your shoes at Clay after your internship ends? The only advice I would give to a new intern is to soak up all knowledge around. Exciting events take place at Clay almost on a daily basis. Whether it is an obtained big client coming in or a new feature added to the applications. And of course, it is important to have the courage to ask questions that interest you.

To all the next interns: Hop on the train of this exciting internship and don't forget to enjoy every moment of it!

Sezim, we are going to miss you loads. Don't be a stranger. There will always be a bottle of prosecco in our office fridge for you!

Are you looking for an internship where you will be motivated to grow your voice and find your passion? Check out our job openings and you might #becomeabrick!

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SALTO KS provides a flexible access control management system that requires no software installation or the added expense of a fully-wired electronic product. Modern cloud-based, wireless access control system is easy and simple to use for businesses including Coworking Spaces, Coliving Buildings, Purpose Built Student Accommodation, Retail, Multi-Tenant Housing, Gyms and many more. Our best in class wireless access control solution and smart locks guarantee the efficiency for your business. Integrate smart locks, start easily managing wireless access control now!

How the SALTO KS team determined their core values

Even a company that’s already thriving needs some guidance. Core values are the essence of a company’s identity: They educate clients and potential customers about the essence of the company, are a compass for the teams in the decision-making processes and are fundamental for recruiting in terms of culture and team fit.

When the going gets tough, the tough need their core values. It’s proven to be very helpful to have the pillars of the company in the back of your mind while having to deal with hard decisions. When confronted with difficult situations you don’t want to waste time and only focus on the problem instead of having to invent the wheel all over again. This is why Clay defined its core values in 2018.

From all the information we gathered from our team we distilled eight core values we, as a company and as a team, stand by and live for.

Read on to find out how we started this process and in which core values it resulted.

In our recap of 2018 we already gave a little sneak peak of our core values, these values were subtracted from the heart of Clay: The Bricks. We’ve adopted these core values to eventually win the battle against mechanical keys. Together.

Survey As a first step, we decided on an anonymous survey we carefully put together, asking questions about the company, the way we work, the product and the culture. We wanted the whole team to give their input, but feel at ease knowing the survey was anonymous and they have the platform to give their honest and unsalted opinion. With this survey, we were able to measure Clay's Employee Value Proposition as well as establish Clay's core values.

Selection process We’ve collected 57 values from all the bricks that resonated with Clay and its team. We then grouped these values submitted by the bricks over 6 main pillars (luckily we were all quite in line with what they became in essence) that define Clay and came to the surface fairly soon after going through the survey’s answers:

  • High level of Expertise

  • Integrity and honesty

  • Respect

  • Experimental attitude

  • Strong team identity

  • Clarity in communication and action

Benefits Strong core values tend to build strong brands. The main benefits for us in defining Clay’s values are:

  • Overall better performance through clarity

  • Ability to efficiently take decisions and own responsibility

  • Speed up the decision making process

  • Expanding the team with like minded people that know from day one what we stand for

The values Now that we’ve explained the way we came up with our core values, we’d like to present you the eight core values we distilled from all the (anonymous) input we received from our team.

Read what Clay stands for and lives by:

Clay's values

  • Innovation is in our veins; we strive for the best, we aim high

  • We communicate openly, transparently and thoughtfully

  • Each of us takes ownership and responsibility for our work


  • We lead with kindness and by example; we bring out the best in each other

  • When in doubt we act with courage, take intelligent risks and make wise decisions

  • With endless curiosity we keep learning and improving while knowing to seek assistance for rapid advancement

  • We’re stronger together. As a team we’re passionate, collaborative, playful and proud

  • To achieve the greatest we keep it simple, take small steps and always work smart

All fine and dandy, but values are developed to live by them right? Our values became our guidelines when developing our product, expanding our team and the way we communicate. We will take responsibility to hold each other accountable for them. And now that as we grow, they can grow and change with us as well.

Follow us on Instagram, LinkedIn or Twitter to determine whether we are doing a good job living by our values!!

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SALTO KS provides a flexible access control management system that requires no software installation or the added expense of a fully-wired electronic product. Modern cloud-based, wireless access control system is easy and simple to use for businesses including Coworking Spaces, Coliving Buildings, Purpose Built Student Accommodation, Retail, Multi-Tenant Housing, Gyms and many more. Our best in class wireless access control solution and smart locks guarantee the efficiency for your business. Integrate smart locks, start easily managing wireless access control now!

The three stages of the SALTO KS hiring process

SALTO KS is a very ambitious company: With a team of 30 Bricks, we aim to help 1,000,000 customers. This means every Brick has to have a unique skill set. Combined, these specific skill sets enable us to push SALTO KS to a higher level. This article explains the three stages of SALTO KS's hiring process.

We are a tight team that is not afraid to step up their game and work hard on what we believe in: A key-free world.

To ensure we stay solid as bricks, we’ve created a hiring process that consists of three stages: Team fit, technical knowledge and a ‘take-home test case’. These stages were initiated to ensure that at the end of the hiring process both parties involved are convinced they are making the right choice.

To give you some insight about the hiring process at SALTO KS, here are the three stages:

Stage 1: Team fit One of the most important requirements for working at SALTO KS is to fit with the team. In order to maintain a thriving organization that is SALTO KS, we need to find potential Bricks that fit our profile of friendly, honest, slightly crazy technology lovers and game changers. People who have a voice, who can take a joke and be willing to grow and evolve.

Stage 2: First screening: Technical knowledge “Do you have what it takes to #becomeabrick” is one of the most frequently used questions on our social media channels and refers to stage two of Clay’s hiring process: Do you have the ability to combine technical knowledge and team spirit on a daily basis? We expect only the best from you!

Stage 3: Take home test case: Develop a working application made from scratch We are a team of just over 20 people. That means the Bricks are aware of everything that’s happening within the office walls and are responsible for the way Clay grows. Therefore we need to know how you work! The assignment: Develop a working application made from scratch!

SALTO KS adopted the ‘Take home test case’ as a tool to measure:

  • On which level you program
  • Which architectural choices you make
  • If you have the capability to grow

In order to make a test case you are proud of, we want you to have fun! Don’t be scared to make mistakes. Mistakes are the cause of creative solutions, and that is where magic might happen! The best way to get those creative juices flowing is to feel at ease so you have room to show us your full potential!

Test case review: Clay loves to learn! That’s why using new technologies in your test case is a good way to show us you’ve got some tricks up your sleeve.

What do we keep in mind while reviewing your ‘Take home test case’?

  • Are you using the same or a more advanced level of technology than SALTO KS?
  • Are you choosing the non-easy road? (Much appreciated by our review team)
  • How do you structure your code and what architectural decisions do you make?
  • Does the code allow easy re-usability?

We are aware making a test case can be tricky while juggling your current job and/or family life. This is why you get one week to work on the test case.

This hiring process might be a little intimidating at first. But we want to make sure everybody is in here for the same reason: To make great products and have fun!

So, now we ask you: Do you have what it takes to #becomeabrick ? Take a look at our career page and apply!

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SALTO KS provides a flexible access control management system that requires no software installation or the added expense of a fully-wired electronic product. Modern cloud-based, wireless access control system is easy and simple to use for businesses including Coworking Spaces, Coliving Buildings, Purpose Built Student Accommodation, Retail, Multi-Tenant Housing, Gyms and many more. Our best in class wireless access control solution and smart locks guarantee the efficiency for your business. Integrate smart locks, start easily managing wireless access control now!