My first working experience at Xpand IT’s summer internships
The past 10th of July, I started my first working experience as a trainee at Xpand IT in the Business Intelligence team.
The company was suggested to me by a friend that had participated in the internship program the year before, saying that it was good getting some experience and that it had a great culture. The expectations were high, but I can say that they were easily met.
My tech project
Starting with the more technical stuff, I integrated the Business Intelligence team for two months. In short, BI is a field that takes advantage of several technologies and methodologies to collect raw data, prepare it for analysis and present it in a way that can be used by businesses to make informed decisions about the best path to take.
To accomplish this, we take advantage of the Pentaho Data Integration platform that offers a user-friendly way of creating and maintaining BI processes. As an example of how simple it is, loading data from a database is as easy as dragging to the interface a “step” called “table input” and filling some parameters.
My project, along with Henrique Pereira and Inês Alves was to create one such step to encrypt and decrypt data according to the new General Data Protection Regulation. The step offers several existing encryption algorithms such as AES, Twofish and Serpent while also allowing users to create their own personalized functions. The step was developed using Java and we also used Agile methodologies during the whole process.
All along the way, we were mentored by Carlos Moreira and Daniel Salgueiral who made sure everything was going smoothly.
Onto the experience itself, I have to say that it was a lot of fun, both in Lisbon and Braga offices.
Here at Lisbon, everyone made sure right from the start that I felt welcomed and a part of the family. Throughout the internship, we’ve truly worked but the workplace environment was always relaxed, and I was able to develop good friendships with the people here at the company.
Between the fun lunches, the super close table football matches and the overall good mood, there were no boring days.
Since the rest of my project’s team was in Braga I also had the opportunity to go spend a few days at the beautiful city which our northern friends were quick to claim is the oldest of Portugal and yet has the youngest population of Europe. There I was also a victim of good northern hospitality and we played a crazy game of bubble football which I would recommend anyone doing. We also did a small day trip to Viana to meet Daniel and the huge office near the beach.
Why your first professional experience should be at Xpand IT
Overall the internship was a great experience and if you are considering partaking in an internship, I would definitely recommend you doing it so at Xpand IT as you’ll be able to:
- Create a project from start to finish using methodologies used in the real world;
- Learn new technologies, such as Pentaho.
- Understand how to use different tools to help you with the problems you face, be in Business Intelligence or another field in the company.
- Meet new people that share the same interests as you.
The only thing left is to thank all the people who I had the pleasure to share this experience with and give a special thanks to the BI and Data Science teams with whom I spent my day today!