My Redfin Internship: Justin Harjanto

Engineering at Redfin

My Redfin Internship: Justin Harjanto

It’s Time

justin-harjanto-800x800Throughout my day from when I wake up to when I go to bed, I always ask myself the question, “What time is it?”. Not the actual time of day whether it be noon or 2 P.M, but the actual time that reflects what I should be doing at that point in the day. From my previous experiences with internships at other companies, I had originally thought I was going to be put on my own island; isolated from the entire team and having eight hours of solid coding time everyday.

Instead, I found that my expectations of what I had in mind for an internship at Redfin were dramastically different from the fun filled reality that became of my 12 weeks at Redfin.

On my first day of my internship, I found myself welcomed and I was quickly integrated with my team. I started off by doing a set of training labs and implementing small bug fixes and features for the first couple weeks to get familiar with the existing codebase. I even merged my first pull request that got pushed out to production in my first week! In the few weeks that followed, I also decided on the project that I wanted to work on for the rest of the summer.

The project I ended up choosing was to create a new page for the Competitive Market Analysis packets that agents show prospective sellers. Although these packets highlighted incredibly useful information about a homeowner’s home in comparison to the market, there was no real page to allow agents to showcase their own abilities to further convince the home seller to choose Redfin to help sell their home. The goal of my project was to solve exactly this problem; to create a page that would give the seller an snapshot of an agent’s track record and capabilities.

So I started to get to work. I wrote a technical specification to layout how I was going to design each of the various components that composed the Agent Profile page. I then presented my spec to other engineers on the team, received feedback, and addressed concerns pertaining to how I approached decomposing the problem. After incorporating their comments, I proceeded to implement each of the components that I outlined in my specification. Along the way, I hit many road blocks and often required a lot of help from other engineers. One of the aspects that I really appreciated about working at Redfin was that every engineer was willing to offer assistance when I asked for it and I always felt like I was never seen as “just the intern”.

After many weeks of debugging why my server endpoints weren’t working and why my React components weren’t rendering correctly, I had finally finished. On completion of my project, I received overwhelming positive feedback from my team as agents have been requesting for this feature for months. I felt incredibly accomplished and even though that this was “my” project, I knew I couldn’t have done it without the help of everyone I reached out to.

At Redfin, I also just had much more than just coding time. My summer was filled with a variety of fun activities. From beautiful hikes, to participating in the Redfin Olympic Games, to ziplining for the first time among the tall trees in Bellevue, I had an unimaginable summer. We also have strange traditions around the office like working out everyday for 10 minutes at 2:30 and harvesting freshly ripe avocados (after raising them at our desks) some days after work!

In the end, I’m glad that I chose the Redfinternship experience. Redfin gave me exactly what I was looking for, an internship where I was not only learning a lot about improving myself technically, but also working on a project that would make a real impact on Redfin as a company and having fun while doing so.

So, the question still stands, what time is it? IT’S REDFIN TIME!

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