##The Paradigm Shift
The company culture at Stitch Fix for the engineering organization is built on being able to support and help people find what they love through technology. This company has an unprecedented synergy between technology and retail. As an intern, I was intimidated about how I was going to make my mark on the company in such a short time. However, I had a paradigm shift when my manager switched the conversation from making an impact to simply learning. That makes expectations on myself less stringent because all I had to do was be a sponge and soak in all information! Therefore, instead of thinking how I could shift the industry, I learned the architecture of the system and made changes incrementally while learning new skills.
Stitch Fix is primarily built on Ruby on Rails. My summer intern project is to help Business Partners (BP) migrate from a third party application called Chartio to an internal application called Fashionthing, which is composed of all the inventory information for the entire organization. What is great is that this project is a high priority and as soon as I touched down to HQ I felt a part of the team, by setting up my development environment and getting a sleek Macbook Pro.
What is unique about this internship is that I get to set up meetings with the BP I am building the feature out for to get a sense of what the actual problem is. Being able to interact with the BP that the feature affects is way more rewarding then getting a list of tasks, so I feel more connected to the task at hand. From that initial interaction, I have full autonomy on the decisions I get to make in terms of my solution as long as it is efficient. It is like I am playing Dungeon and Dragons as I pick my method for selecting a solution, a rewarding feeling that many interns do not get to feel.
Since I don’t want to act like I am a coding rockstar, pairing is a critical part of the Stitch Fix engineering ecosystem. The philosophy is that if you could solve a problem in 15 minutes by pairing with another individual, it can be better than spending an hour working on that same problem. For example, I had to get aggregate data for an ElasticSearch index, bur all the searches I did were failing. After sometime of doing my due diligence and reading documentation, I felt like I hit a dead end. Therefore, I reached out to members on my team and they carved out their time to work with me. It is all about trade offs, time vs efficiency. Whether the employee is sitting right next to you or working remote from Salt Lake City, Utah there is always someone willing to help you when you are stuck in a rut, which makes my intern experience so much more rewarding.
##The Shameless Plug
If you are interested in the Stitch Fix intern program, checkout the careers to see if there are any openings. The organization is growing rapidly and we want you.