Startup job spotlight: front-end engineer at Tilt


With startups leading the way in Canadian innovation, every day, BetaKit does its part to help fill the talent gap with our BetaKit Job Board.

To highlight some of the great places prospective employees can work at across Canada, we’ll put one startup in the spotlight each week to find out what makes their company tick.

Right now, Tilt is hiring a front-end engineer. We talked to Anson MacKeracher, the international development lead, about the best parts of working there.

What’s the first thing you tell a new hire to get them excited to work at Tilt?

On your first day, you are treated to a standing ovation—everybody is gathered around waiting for your arrival. We don’t have to tell new hires anything to get them excited, they can feel the energy as soon as they walk through the door.

One of our core values is ‘Love our Tilters’. That isn’t just isolated to the awesome users of the Tilt platform, but also to each and every one of our colleagues. We vet potential colleagues (really) well, so you end up working on a team of smart, engaged badasses.

What are some company perks that people can expect?

Some of my personal favourites are:

    Round-trip plane ticket anywhere in the world for your one-year anniversary (yup!)

    $4,000 CAD Hardware Budget

    15-day minimum Vacation policy; our founders, James Beshara and Khaled Hussein, designed a 15 day minimum vacation policy (hint: there’s no maximum).

    $100 CAD Monthly Tilt credit, spend it on whatever Tilts you’d like!

    Hackations; we believe that cool places foster creativity and collaboration. Tilters can book a hackation and knock out a project with their team in a location that inspires them.

When working as part of the engineering team, what kind of problems could a front-end engineer expect to tackle?

Front-end engineering at Tilt is a little different than it is elsewhere. We aren’t hacking together JQuery soup until it ‘just works’. We take our work seriously, we build re-usable user interface components with extensive automated tests. We deploy to production probably 50 to 75 times a week. We use feature flags, A/B tests, and continuous integration and deployment. Our applications are written in functional isomorphic React.

Some of the challenges we face are localizing the Tilt front-end to operate well in all of the new countries we are launching in. We’re adding new countries to the Tilt platform at about one or two a month, and each country requires those little touches to make Tilt feel like a perfectly native experience. A big part of this is language translation.

We aren’t afraid of new technology. If you can make the case that a new technology will improve how we develop at Tilt, you’ll be encouraged to do do it. We keep a really high bar on our codebase, trying to reduce technical debt whenever possible. Through rigorous code and architecture review, and legendary retrospectives, we help you become the best engineer you can be.

In what ways do you help to foster personal and/or professional growth in your team?

Each person at Tilt is critical, so we spend a lot of time trying to help each other improve—whether it’s extensive code reviews that really help refine our codebase, or diversity training to improve our hiring process. We have a bi-weekly company-wide meeting where we give props to folks who have really gone above and beyond. Each meeting we pick a core value and a person (or two) that really embodies that value, and we make sure they are celebrated.

Beyond that, we have a strong tendency to ‘promote from within’, meaning team members who are ready to take the next step are encouraged to do so, whether it’s team-lead, director, or department head. We don’t like to think of ourselves as a company, but rather a family. A family takes care of their own.

What’s your favourite part about working at Tilt?

I work with some of the most brilliant, compassionate, and ambitious people in the world. We pour our heart and souls into building and refining a platform that our Tilters use to change the world around them. A lot of companies talk about wanting to change the world, but Tilt gives that power to anybody with a mobile phone or an internet connection. I can’t think of a better cross-section between technical excellence and real empowerment.

Jessica Galang

Jessica Galang

Freelance tech writer. Former BetaKit News Editor.

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