Our News • HR

Interview with Pierre Rousseau, software architect


Read the interview with Pierre Rousseau, software architect in the Business Custom Development department.

For International Developers' Day, we have chosen to give them a direct voice. Read the interview below with Pierre Rousseau, software architect in the Business Custom Development department of the IT division.

Why did you choose to become a developer?
Pierre Rousseau
: It's a profession that emerged gradually during my university studies; actually, I discovered programming and I found a lot of similarities with assembling Lego, Mecano, etc. Assembling software components until you obtain the desired result is very satisfying.

How did you become a developer? What was your training?
: Initially, I wasn't necessarily going to become a developer. I wanted to be a maths teacher. I studied at Le Havre University: a two-year mathematics and IT undergraduate programme (DEUG) (in the meantime, I discovered programming and loved it), then a bachelor's and master's degree in IT (SIRES).

What advice would you give to a young student who wants to start a career in programming?
Perseverance, experimentation and don't hesitate to go off the beaten track and, above all, to be proactive, on forums, for example.

What do you think is the best programming language to start with? And which one do you hate?
: I've always had a penchant for JAVA, so I'd say JAVA, but I really liked C as well. I don't particularly dislike any language.

Do you have any tips for learning a language?
: Behind a language, there are concepts. It is more important to master the concepts than the language itself. Indeed, nowadays, given the amount of documentation online, not knowing a language by heart is not a problem. But, not knowing the concepts of a language is a problem.

According to you, your experience… what characterises a "good" developer? (background, work habits, best practice, etc.)?
: A good developer is someone who:

  • is inventive
  • does not stick to their own habits but is constantly trying to improve
  • when they hit a wall, they look for a decision themselves
  • is lazy (yes! a good developer will only do a task once!)
  • does not just do what they're told without a minimum of critical thinking

How do you continue to improve and keep your knowledge up to date?
: To keep my knowledge up to date, there is nothing better than self-training and experimentation, which I believe are an integral part of our profession. Talking to colleagues, external developers, etc. also helps to keep your knowledge up to date and to build skills in various areas. There are also company training courses that enable you to improve your skills.

What annoys developers most?
: Many things

What clichés do you face?
: No particular cliché, apart from the usual, "Ah, you're in IT? I have a problem with my PC…".

What is your position and what are your tasks within SPB?
: My job title at SPB is software architect and my tasks are:

  • ensuring the application consistency of the information system
  • ensuring the modernisation and sustainability of the information system
  • implementing new functionalities and services
  • implementing new technologies
  • assisting developers with specific technical problems

What does your typical day look like?
: I don't have a typical day because it chiefly depends on what needs to be done at the time. Nevertheless, there are definitely typical moments: I keep in touch with colleagues on a very regular basis to discuss current issues, and I set the goals for my week or even my day, telling myself that today progress has to be made on such and such a subject.

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