Der Online-Musikdienst SoundCloud ist weithin für sein Produkt bekannt. Dass hinter der Plattform viele IT-Jobs stehen, sollten IT-Absolventen dabei nicht außer Acht lassen: Stefanie Tinder spricht über ihren persönlichen Werdegang und aktuelle Herausforderungen bei ihrer Tätigkeit.
Hello Stefanie, what is your task at Soundcloud?
My name is Stefanie Tinder and I am an engineering manager at SoundCloud in Berlin. I manage a team of eight engineers and we build features for individual creators on SoundCloud.
Did you study or are you self taught?
I did study it, but I was kind of ,tricked’ by my teacher. My friend and I considered taking computer science as one of our main subjects for the German Abitur, but were intimidated by being the only women, so we asked our teacher about this and he said ,this year there are going to be more women than EVER in the class’.So we signed up and it turned out we were the only ones. But then we realized his statement was still true! I think he was very proud of his cheeky move and today I am very grateful because I went on to study Computer Science at the University of Bonn. I am really glad I did and I don’t know if I had been brave enough without the experience I had at school.
What is a current project you are working on and what challenges are you facing?
Our team is currently working on features to help creators understand how they are doing on SoundCloud, like for example better statistics around the performance of their tracks.
This involves changes to our mobile app for creators like Pulse as well as backend work and also offline data processing. One challenge is that our team wants to make changes to systems we have never worked on before and that have been in place for a long time, but it is exciting work and the changes will be very valuable for our users.
„Confidence issues were holding me back the most“
Which was the biggest challenge you faced in your professional life?
I guess when looking back over the last 15 years I would say confidence issues were holding me back the most, especially in the beginning of my career. I wish somebody had warned me about the people who try to make their work seem like ,magic’, but when you look under the hood it is just the same as everybody else is doing, no magic involved whatsoever and not ‘better’ than what you’re doing.
What is it you like/dislike most about your work in general?
I dislike ,clever’ code, for example squashing as many things as possible into as few lines of code as possible because it just makes it harder for the next person to pick up the work. In general, I would say I dislike signs of carelessness.
What I love about my work is its collaborative nature. In my career, I have hardly seen any software that was shipped by individuals. I tend to work on larger software systems that require intense technical discussions to figure out the best approach and this is something I thrive on, especially if the business context is complex and interesting. I also really appreciate the freedom this job gives me. My partner and I decided that we wanted to move to Berlin. Finding a job that I like was just not anything I was nervous about. It was almost more difficult to find a flat!
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