Grow and teach. How we made friends with PEGA

    The group of companies LANIT employs more than ten thousand people. It seems that in such a team there is always a suitable specialist. However, every year more and more new products, methods, solutions appear on the market. IT professionals are interested in new products in the industry, but in order to study them, time and money are needed. Therefore, companies are faced with a situation where there is a promising technology, solution or platform, but there are no specialists who could use them.

    From this article, you will learn how the LANIT-BP team was able to master the platform, which at that time had just appeared on the Russian market. The developers of the company will tell you what was the most difficult thing when meeting the new technology and share their experience on how best to proceed to work with an unfamiliar development.

    A source

    How it all started


    Eight years ago, the LANIT team was solving a difficult task - we agreed with PEGA that LANIT would implement its BPM solutions in Russia (more details about the methodology for managing business processes and about PEGA were already written in Habré).

    Until 2010, a department of integrated business solutions operated in LANIT, employing about 60 people. We implemented Java projects in telecom and banking. In the same year, we learned about the American company PEGA and its BPM system . Business processes are rapidly turning into a "figure." At some point, they began to be perceived as a value that can be transformed and improved, and thus affect the business: for example, to accelerate it. At that time in Russia, the BPM direction was little known, and LANIT decided to deal with it closely.

    So, in 2011, we started working with the platform and got a new name - “ LANIT - BPM ”. The company was the first to introduce BPM products from PEGA in the country. There were neither specialists nor other players in the Russian market who knew the decision. It was necessary to find people to whom this technology would be interesting. The company turned 16 enthusiasts. They were accomplished professionals, but at some point they wanted to try themselves in a new direction and believed in a new product.

    Training


    At that time there was not a single Russian-language resource where PEGA and BPM were accessible and understandable. The PEGA Academy (training portal) was already operational, but it was also completely English speaking. Employees themselves were engaged in adapting and translating manuals. Then a company representative came to us and gave lectures, also our studentsSpecialists traveled to the office of the vendor in London. Americans developed their own certification and prepared customers for it with the help of paid courses. After a number of LANIT specialists passed the classic PEGA certification, we developed our own testing. Then we sent future professionals to be certified by PEGA when they passed our test. In the early years, it was held online, literally via Skype. Later, Network Academy LANIT obtained a partnership with the vendor, and the process began to go much easier.

    The future PEGA masters mastered most of the materials themselves. Everyone was glad to learn quickly, but it was necessary to start the implementation as soon as possible, and this required even more personnel. So, a group of those who have already mastered the system urgently embarked on campaigning and retraining of those interested in PEGA. The dive was already much faster: three weeks instead of two months. For 21 days, people took two 40-hour introductory courses: FastTrack and Bootcamp. They give an overview of the platform and work with it. Usually these courses are mastered with a trainer. Sometimes novice experts do it on their own, but it takes twice as long. Another week was given for running. There were moments when more experienced developers mastered the entire platform in a week. As a result, full-fledged PEGA specialists grew up in LANIT in a year or two. During this time, they managed not only to master the textbooks and pass the tests, but also to apply knowledge in real projects. More about this will tell later.

    Training new specialists of LANIT-BPM  

    Over the entire period of work with the system, more than 300 people came to learn how to work with PEGA, half of them brought the matter to the end and remained in the company. Everyone who started training had a different IT experience. On average, the first specialists trained in two months.

    Training new specialists "LANIT - BPM"

    Where does PEGA work


    Russian companies are actively working with the platform. They chose this technology as the main platform for automating business processes. For example, these are Sberbank, Alfa Bank, VTB, Norilsk Nickel. If a specialist wants to participate in international projects, he should know that PEGA, in addition to its head office in Cambridge,  has offices in Latin America, Europe and Asia, and the list of foreign clients using the product includes the world's largest corporations.

    More PEGA Cases

    On personal experience


    We talked with ten developers from LANIT-BP. Some of them joined the direction from the very start, others came relatively recently. Colleagues told not only about their experience before they were in the company, but also about how difficult it was to dive into a new area.

    More than half of the respondents received IT-related education: it was either applied mathematics or an engineering specialty. Others came to IT in a different way, for example, through school: “By education I am not really a programmer: a teacher of physics and computer science. Formally I work not in my specialty, but in fact my entire adult life was professionally engaged exclusively in applied programming, ”says senior developer Mikhail.

    There is an opinion in HRthat the adaptation of a new specialist takes up to six months. This time is needed for the development of work functions, as well as familiarity with the team, getting used to the new office. We asked the interviewed colleagues about how long they had adjusted to the new platform for them. Pegovskih courses took from one to four weeks. Then, up to half a year, it took me to dive into a real project.

    A source

    Any company understands that a new specialist is necessary, as quickly as possible and more efficiently bring up to date. At the same time, the employer does not forget that the immersion of a person must go organically. When it comes to a specific project or technology, companies most often switch to automatic or self-study: they connect beginners to educational portals, give out professional literature, and get acquainted with the online community. And all this, of course, gives the desired effect, lays the foundation. However, most of all in realizing the product, real work helps: “Experienced colleagues help to understand the product faster, access to their projects (see how it is implemented), mentoring. The “spirit of innovation” helps: no one knows how to “prepare” BPM, so you have to share, communicate. It charges, ”says lead developer Nikita.

    On the other hand, when working with the new system there are obvious drawbacks that most respondents notice:

    • the community of specialists is small and passive,
    • little information about the technology itself in the network,
    • documentation in English only (if the product is foreign).

    These disadvantages, oddly enough, often help in the work. Says senior developer Alexei: "Any not very standard solution has to be invented and tested independently, which is sometimes even more interesting."

    Source

    There are those who would like to move to a new direction in IT, try themselves in working with another product, but they are constrained by doubts, fears, uncertainty. In such cases, one of the best medicines becomes the experience of specialists who several years ago were in the place of the doubter.

    Our developers have identified several points that will help those who do not dare to plunge into a new activity:

    • “It’s difficult only at the beginning. The main thing is to focus on the start, ”- Nikolai, a system architect.
    • “We need to set ourselves ambitious, but achievable goals - the platform is large, with many opportunities. Understand and understand everything at once will not work. It is important to collect a common understanding in pieces, ”- leading developer Maria.
    • "Not to be sprayed on several new technologies at the same time," - lead developer Jaroslav.
    • “Find a good motivator. When there is a constant “itch” pushing forward, then the learning process will be organized by itself, ”developer Ratibor.
    • “It is necessary to master“ small steps ”; each stage must be achievable in the foreseeable time in order to see the result of its work, ”the developer Murat.
    • “From the very beginning, make sure that you need this skill,” - lead developer Sergey.

    If you are reading this, it means that you have learned how LANIT made friends with PEGA and that every professional (beginner or accomplished) can independently start such a friendship with any technology that interests him. The main thing is to decide on the approach and choose the right company.  

    We will be very happy to learn about your experience in mastering a new technology, product, solution. We are waiting for stories in the comments.

    PS Each of you can go the way of our colleagues and start working with PEGA BPM. We just need:

    Only registered users can participate in the survey. Sign in , please.

    What prevents you from developing a new product or technology?


    Also popular now: