Do you think you're a senior engineer? How would you prove it?
Today, I'm listing a few angles where you can check if you're already a senior software engineer or not. If you feel comfortable answering those questions from each aspect, you've probably met the criteria. It's not an exhaustive list but I believe it's pretty representative.
- Have you implemented any product which is still running online right now?
- Were the last three products you participated in going to production at the end?
System and architecture design #
- Do you feel comfortable designing a system or architecture after collecting the product requirements?
- Can you draw the complete system and architecture graph with key modules of the product you're working on?
Scalable software #
- Are you able to list scale-related considerations for the software you're working on?
- If there is suddenly a million or even a billion users using your the product you're maintaining, are you able to make it work as expected? Or do you know how to adjust your product to handle this kind of traffic?
- Do you have a process to collect knowledge in your team?
- If you get the same question again from peers, can you share any sort of documents to answer the question instead of repeating yourself?
Team-wide or Cross-team impact #
- Have you advocated for any change that was important to the company or your team? Why was it so important? Are you able to share the process on how you introduced the change?
- Have you built a tool where others are still actively using right now?
- Do you periodically monitor the product you've participated in?
- Are you the go-to person if there is any issue, incident or question related to the product you're invovled in? Are you responsive about it?
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