Feel like I'm stagnating and alone

Clever Devices / Eng scorch1262
Jul 13, 2018 12 Comments

tl;dr - 10 months since hire date, still no one knows what exactly my role is going to be, still haven't learned a whole lot. It's driving me nuts and I don't know what I can do short of quitting since I still like the company, culture, and people, I just want someone to give a fuck about me.

I posted several months ago about how no one on my team seemed to know what to do with me; I'm QA Automation/SDET, not a full dev/SDE. YOE: 2+, getting on 3. The situation seems to only have become worse. I feel like 80+% of my time is spent doing manual testing, waiting for people to respond to emails that drag out my tickets and make it look like I'm just taking forever, and wondering what's wrong with the setup I have of my company's proprietary hardware while my entire team just kinda goes "lol works on my machine". My manager just recently had to go out on extended sick leave due to a hospitalization, and now I feel completely stuck since he was probably the only person on the team who gave a remote heck whether or not I was able to do something or if I was at least actively doing some kind of code work for a bit. Few things:

- My director is the one who doles out tickets, but we all have a say in them to an extent
- There are plenty of things that I've noticed suck and would like to fix, but highly doubt i'd get permission to tackle because of our current priorities and the fact that I'd have to learn so much
- I get ZERO feedback on the code work that I AM given except if it's completely missing the requirements: so long as the job is done and it works, the ticket and review are closed

While everyone's cordial and nice at the company (haven't seen anything particularly strange), I still don't know/really talk to anyone outside of my team outside of asking questions, and there haven't been any social events since the holiday party. My social situation in my personal life has suffered as well, which is what I was leaning on, so the isolation has doubled down. I'm not sure if I should hit leetcode/Pluralsight and look for a new job. It's not like the company culture is bad or anything (no kool-aid that I'm told to chug, schedule is flexible, most people aim for the 9-5 lifestyle), and the benefits are really good (aside from my pay), but any new or interesting problems were immediately handed off to my manager. Now that he's on leave, they're all handed to one of the SDEs who joined my SDET team, who was friends with my manager. And he's kinda just been knocking the tickets he's been given out of the park; meanwhile, my eyes glaze over as I sit and wait for one of our products to install or chase down instructions that don't even exist in Confluence. It actually kills any motivation I have to learn new things because I don't even want to think about anything related to programming after a day of that. I think the most I've been able to do is learn a little bit about android dev with java during night classes, basics about c# Funcs, and a bit about async/await with c#'s TPL.

I'm worried because most jobs near me that aren't this one are really deep in full-stack-only territory, and the most background I've got with web is javascript fundamentals and CodeAcademy-level html/css. The commutes are also really bad from the postings I've seen and the odd recruiter that sends me an email once in a while (CT, NJ from the edge of NYC before Long Island? Buzz off). I'm also worried that since this is my second job and if I don't at least learn something to make myself appealing, I'll be stuck at my current paygrade as well; I'm already suspect when it comes to resumes since I have my Bachelor's in a humanities and not CS.

Send help. (TC attached, as per Blind law 👌)

TC: 58k

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TOP 12 Comments
  • New / Ops xrex
    You are. You should quit.
    Jul 13, 2018 0
  • Yahoo / Eng Chumlee
    These jobs are great because you can leetcode at work all day and nobody will give a shit
    Jul 13, 2018 0
  • Pinterest jHFS43
    Leetcode day and night. Move to bayarea.
    Jul 13, 2018 0
  • Marvell 18july
    If you need the paycheck, stay and learn new things outside work hours Figure out a career path for yourself and gain those skills. Then interview and leave. Try to go to tech meetups and meet ppl. Figure out what you want to do, what tech, etc. Meet other techies. If you were in Bay Area there’d be a lot more opps for you plus tons of meetup opps. You could take a coding boot camp, etc. you can split an apartment and rent a room for low rent to get by. Then work your way up through prior suggestions.

    Lastly don’t despair. You’re still young and energetic. The world is your oyster.
    Jul 13, 2018 2
    • Clever Devices / Eng scorch1262
      OP
      I was at least going to do that, stay while looking, it's what I did for my last job. I'd rather not move out to the bay area since although the opps are plenty, the culture is stranger than I'd like. I also have my mother as as dependent after an accident she had three years ago, so I can't just three-sheets-to-the-wind run off to the valley. I got troubles, like most people. Mine are just different.

      As much as I listed there, I might have to find a way over somehow. The NY meetups aren't great in number or quality, and most are about webdev, which I'm completely removed from. I like .NET desktop development so far, and I guess I wouldn't mind backend, but most positions seem to be full-stack and in Javascript with a smattering of Python (not opposed to the latter but I haven't done much with it since my last job). I'll at least start a leetcode regimen, though.
      Jul 13, 2018
    • Marvell 18july
      Well you’re going to keep getting what you’re getting if you keep doing what you’re doing so you should do something. If you can’t move to the bay you have to change up another variable. Like maybe entertain a further commute. It’s not forever and you’re young. And good son for taking care of mom!
      Jul 13, 2018
  • IBM gIrL06
    I would say leetcode
    Jul 13, 2018 0
  • Indeed / Eng RIPShaq
    Take initiative automate your testing learn shit on your own. Hack your way around the bullshit your given. Start leetcode.

    Just want someone to give a fuck about me is kind of a good way to describe the plight of life itself though.
    Jul 14, 2018 1
    • Clever Devices / Eng scorch1262
      OP
      >Take initiative automate your testing learn shit on your own. Hack your way around the bullshit your given.
      Wasn't like I was just jerking around on Twitter or blind all day. I would have already done some kind of automation if all of the things I tried weren't going to be less efficient or not useful than the stuff we had in place
      Jul 14, 2018
  • Revinate JPQ
    You have the perfect builder-job. STFU about who cares about you, and realize that if you can truly get your work done in way less time you have several amazing options others don't have.

    Get over the guilt of doing something you were not explicitly told to do. Automate all your manual tests and use the free time for other types of gains; like doubling your tech income.
    Jul 14, 2018 0
  • Salesforce uTTA76
    Everyone here has provided great advice, but let me sum up all work for you. When people care what you're doing/pay too much attention it becomes micromanaging. If they're not paying you too much mind and not complaining then assume you're doing the job well. And use this time to build to what you want. You're not sure yet and 2 years in that's pretty normal. It's a great opportunity to get a paycheck and then start you hustle. Where do you want to be 3-5 years. Figure that out, then you'll be telling them what you're doing. No one can drive your career but you. And you don't want them to
    Jul 14, 2018 0
  • Lyft qwsszx
    Y u no leetcode
    Jul 13, 2018 0

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