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Why Every Engineer and Designer Should Spend at Least 2 Years in an Agency

work-at-agency

Working at an agency is the best way to gain a myriad of experiences, to try new things, and to establish yourself in your field. The types of skills you’ll learn in this environment will prove useful throughout your career. Here’s what we mean:

Keep It Fresh

We work in an ever-changing industry where being a life-long learner is the difference between keeping up and falling behind the times. When you work at an agency, you have more opportunities to learn about the newest tools and technologies so you can offer the best possible solutions to your client. Each project has its own unique needs and specifications—and your intuition and innovation are always a project requirement.

In an agency environment, your team will make technical and design recommendations to clients who often have no technical background, so your commitment to learning and growing has a huge impact. At WillowTree, we build in learning time with our weekly Innovation Hour, which allows you to research something that interests you, whether or not it relates to your current client project.

You’re in the Big Leagues

WillowTree works with large enterprises, which offers our teams an opportunity to collaborate with senior-level folks from some of the largest and most recognizable brands in the world. As a designer or developer, you serve as their trusted expert, helping them to bring to life, the product their customers have been dreaming about.

It’s an awesome privilege to make real connections with innovators who represent industry-leading global enterprises in all fields. Not only do you network with incredibly influential experts, you show them how you work and how capable you are.

Learn from your Peers

Agencies allow us to work with colleagues from different backgrounds, levels of experience, and specializations. You get an excellent opportunity to learn and grow from their challenges and successes. Our teammates have backgrounds that include filmmakers, artists, musicians, museum curators, business owners.

At WillowTree, you’ll work with developers, designers, test engineers, and project and product managers—not to mention data scientists, user researchers, and delivery managers. When you join our team, we’ll pair you with a short-term mentor to help onboard you, as well as a long-term mentor who will help you guide your growth and advancement.

Be Part of Something—Then Try Something New

You gain perspective from working at a company where you contribute to lots of individual products. A technical stack that works really well for one company might be a disaster for another, so you have the opportunity to think through lots of different problems, help to solve them, and move on. You aren’t stuck finding solutions to the same problem over and over again, as you might at a company where you work on the same piece of technology with the same audience the whole time you’re there.

There’s no danger of getting stuck in a rut when the requirements change for each project. At WillowTree, we have options to work on longer- or shorter-term projects based on our interests. If you’ve been on a particular product for a while, our project coordinators can help you to cycle onto something new, so no one is stuck working on anything for too long. Alternatively, because we work on products that become very integral to our clients’ businesses, we also have the opportunity to make a long-term impact. This way, you’ll see the bigger picture of the project you’re working on.

The tech industry offers many ways to make a living. You could work at a startup and grow something new, or work for an established company and learn from their successes. We like the third option: join an agency, where we get to design and build a product for an established company, grow it, then have the opportunity to do it all over again with the next client. We build products people love, with a variety of requirements, in various languages, for different audiences.

Working at an agency is one of the coolest jobs there is. Interested in learning more? Check out our Careers page for more information about working at WillowTree.

Join our team to work with Fortune 500 companies in solving real-world product strategy, design, and technical problems.

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