Jaren Lim

Blockchain Developer Intern

Jaren is a blockchain developer intern at IBM while pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Information Systems from the Singapore Management University in 2019.

Each day presents an exciting new challenge, far away from monotony.

My company and my internship

As a Blockchain Developer Intern at IBM, I work on both the technical and business aspects of blockchain. On the technical front, I work on code to develop blockchain solutions for our clients. This comprises programming the smart contracts, server and network. On the business front, I create materials for client engagements, and conduct research on various industries and use cases to generate opportunities for blockchain. I work on different tasks everyday due to the project-driven and international nature of the work. Each day presents an exciting new challenge, far away from monotony.

How I got my internship

There was a phone screening by HR first, regarding my profile, experiences and reason for application, before a face-to-face interview with my manager to assess my fit for the role and team. My manager also gave me a tour of the IBM office. Lastly, I had a pair programming interview on test-driven development to assess my technical competency. Having a strong interest in blockchain technology and the industry helps greatly in landing such a role. Adopting a growth mindset helps identify my strengths and areas of improvement.

The highs and lows

Being a part of a highly capable team, with excellent management and engaging projects makes me grateful for the opportunity to intern with Blockchain Labs. I’m given a lot of responsibility to engage in meaningful work, working on large-scale projects that span different industries and geographies. Coming from an Information Systems background, some technical architectures and design patterns were unfamiliar to me. For that, I am very thankful for team members who take the time to explain these paradigms to me, greatly improving my understanding.

My happiest moment at work

A very memorable moment was during pre-sales engagement with a large overseas client over the Chinese New Year period. While it was hectic, urgent, and disruptive to the festivities, there was a sense of unity as the whole team worked together on a shared goal. This gave me a huge sense of satisfaction. An ongoing task of mine is developing a portion of the framework that augments blockchain development.This framework is to be used by our team, the greater IBM worldwide Blockchain Labs and all our customers. Knowing that my work will have such a great impact to others drives me.

Training and support

Pair programming is a big part of the culture here. It is something I am relatively new to, but it has provided me with excellent training. I was paired with a senior developer and in that session, I learnt much more about best practices and tricks than when I was learning on my own. The HR and IT Service teams were extremely responsive and helpful, ensuring that I could focus on my work without worry.

Culture and environment

My working hours are from 9am to 6pm daily, and I was given time-off to attend my classes for my final semester at university. Our team has daily stand-up calls for members from different parts of the world to sync up and keep each other informed, creating a sense of camaraderie. As the most junior member of the team, I appreciate receiving help and advice from everyone,for technical or business questions. As a team, we also share meals and casual conversations. With a flat hierarchy, the IBM management is very approachable, listening to suggestions from interns, letting me know that my inputs matter.

Some advice

Don’t miss the opportunity – working at the forefront of technology alongside a capable and considerate team allows you to learn and perform beyond what you can imagine.