rebeldot grundfos

Supporting the biggest water pump manufacturer in the world in their process of digital transformation

Grundfos is a company that connects millions of people, being present in more than 60 countries, ensuring water access and leading the change within some of the world’s biggest agendas on water and energy.

As a large enterprise, Grundfos wanted to scale up its development capabilities by getting on board a technical partner who could help them with their digital development process, building together towards the vision of achieving positive global change.

In this story, we will highlight the power of commitment to company values and the business implications of transparency as part of our way of building digital products.

We’ll be presenting how we got reminded by one of the partners we work with that, while skill can be taught, human connection is what can truly flourish a collaboration and bring to life that “human-centered technology” we all talk about.

The real challenge here was not just about the technical aspects of the project but also the cultural match between Grundfos and us.

It was clear that Grundfos wanted a long-term partner with whom they could build things that last.

So how do you reveal if there is a match between a company of 150+ employees and another one of roughly 20.000? And how can this cultural fit translate into quality work that touches millions of people?

Grundfos digital review

Our approach was straightforward, to say the least.

Reinforcing the values we believe in and owning them as a team.

Simply being true to ourselves.

Like real rebels.

 

We invited people into our house. And our hearts. Visiting our office in Cluj-Napoca, Transylvania, the team of Grundfos got to know our people a whole lot better, to see what drives us all, what keeps us together and whether being a rebel is something that they themselves identify with or not.

We have exchanged history, discussed values, and glanced together at the core of each of our teams. And we were nervous. Because we were indirectly addressing a network of 20.000 people.

It did help to address People & Culture aspects alongside discussions about tech and past case-studies. Once tech & business fit was validated, we had a traditional BBQ in the backyard, where the people of Grundfos could casually interact with our team, sharing stories and enjoying meaningful conversations about tech, family, culture, and life in general. Basically, kicking off the project with an impromptu team-building.

grundfos rebeldot collaboration

Following this encounter in Transylvania, the Grundfos team figured we’re all on the same page and set the ground for a close partnership between us and their digital division, Grundfos Digital. As an implication of the trust we were given, we allocated two fully functional teams to work on two different projects. 

This, in turn, allowed us to pursue our end-to-end development approach so that we can fully immerse in the business and deliver tailored and tested solutions.

With genuine enthusiasm on both sides, the knowledge gaps were soon taken care of via a learning plan that offered our engineers the necessary skills to work with the Siemens Mindsphere platform and deliver top-notch IoT solutions.

Although Siemens Mindsphere was a completely new technology to our engineers, that didn’t stop us from accepting yet another challenge, learning and eventually embedding it into our vocabulary to deliver the same quality standards.

Believe it or not, this was a priceless way in which our rebel character was reflected - acknowledging our gaps and being visibly eager to acquire new skills.

In a span of 5 months, the Grundfos Digital team scaled our collaboration from 2 to 4 teams working on 4 separate projects to continue delivering thriving digital solutions within the IoT ecosystem.

The key here was being equal partners, assuming full ownership and organically integrating our way of doing things - being there every step of the way, throughout the end-to-end process.

This would not have been possible without the overwhelming level of acceptance that the team of Grundfos welcomed us with. We have been treated as part of their team and were given the chance to actively contribute to their communities, working and growing together.

But to ensure that we understood the impact of our collaboration and the heritage of the devices we were about to augment using technology, Grundfos invited us too into their headquarters.

We spent there (5 days) with our first two teams. While the cultural shock had its say through LEGO houses, actual houses, the Danish hygge and Liquorice, it was fascinating to see just how comfortable we all felt there, talking, and working with a group of nice people whom we just met.

We felt a deep sense of belonging and a refreshing boost of enthusiasm seeing how aligned everyone was at Grundfos, working towards a common goal of, you guessed it, making the world a better place.

The trip to Denmark was nevertheless a motivation impulse to every team member and a confirmation that we were working on something bigger than ourselves. Literally. We got a proper induction into the company culture, went on guided tours through the factory and the museum (talk about heritage) and got to see the huge water pumps, the one evergreen device that stood at the core of the business.

This offered our team the right context to do what we know best and bring to the table our true way of working - not implementors, but consultants who pay undivided attention to every stage of the process, improving and optimizing along the way in each area where there is a need to accelerate and or develop much more efficient processes.

Coincidentally or not, we figured that our development process was similar to Grundfos’ way of working, which was a great starting point for our collaboration.

RebelDot cafe

Why we added an actual café into our new headquarters.

Two years ago, I was excited to spread the word about our decision to leave the main Rebel office situated in a nice office building in downtown Cluj, to adapt to the new paradigm of working – working from home.

This time, I will be sharing with you just how this whole thing turned out, why we decided to move back to our HQ, and how this newly redesigned space is helping us get closer to our vision of creating communities based on fair relations.

Adapting to working from home: Leaving our day-to-day office for an actual home, turned into a social space.

Right after the pandemic hit, we were just leaving our HQ as a natural next step in adapting to the new not-so-clear context.

We figured, since our colleagues were already improvising their personal home offices, ours should transform into a social space, a place where people could connect outside the limitations of whatever conferencing platforms we were using at that time.

The place where we used to meet, work and connect on a regular, the 3rd floor office where we made so many memories and experienced the beginning, ups and downs and eventually flourishment of RebeDot, became empty as we moved on towards working remotely from a house on a residential street.

Or how we like calling it, the Rebel Playground.

RebelDot yard

Imagine a house hidden on the narrow streets of Cluj-Napoca, a welcoming little office, an actual home turned into a social place where people could create digital products, but, most of all, meaningful relationships with each other.

Team BBQs, movie nights, product demo sessions, yard sales, client meetings. These were just a few of the events we all enjoyed in this comfy little house during the pandemic.

It was our way of adapting to the “future of work”.

Truth is, we had no clear forecast on how we were going to do our daily jobs in exactly two years from then.

After all, we lived through some truly “uncertain times”, right?

However, what was clear was knowing that the office was not going to disappear but just change.

And so, it happened.

RebelDot office

People started to get back to the office.

We spent two years, growing from 60 to almost 200 people, more than tripling in size while working remotely, enjoying the comfort of our homes, but missing real human connections.

For that face-to-face feedback, those silly early-morning jokes, or the daily “anybody want to order something to eat?” questions.

And, to our surprise, as the pandemic went by, we’ve seen people joining our informal office more and more, up to the point where it became a sort of gateway, the kind of place where you go to escape the day-to-day routine and chat with people.

People gradually become more interested in working from the office a few days per week.

In fact, when we asked our colleagues, as part of our yearly company meeting, what they would change at RebelDot, the most frequent answer was “a bigger office”.

And so the next logical step was finding one.

But the idea that we could have more spaces where internal communities could blossom organically, a context where people already working together could connect in a natural way..

This is what intrigued us.

And this is what led us to reinvent ourselves once again and come up with yet another bold decision, owning it, just like we did when we set out to leave our main office for a smaller social space in response, wanting to adapt to the remote-working paradigm.

“Redesigning our old office and deciding to move back there was a decision none of us had foreseen. And honestly, I am happy with the outcome. 2 years ago, I knew that the next few years of work were going to be remote, and I also felt the office was never going to be the same again, hence the decision to leave our bigger HQ for a smaller & not-so-office-like space. However, imagine how I felt seeing that people are increasingly coming back to the office, overbooking that unofficial playground on Alverna Street.”

Tudor Ciuleanu
Rebel Cafe

Moving back into our old office space, this time reinvented.

At the end of last year we asked our colleagues what they would want to change in RebelDot… well, they asked for more office space.

So, we went back to the drawing board.

We acknowledged that a lot of things have changed since the last time we stepped foot into our main HQ, but we also knew that our desire to connect with each-other was greater than ever.

The past years have taught us an important lesson about the kind of environment that makes us the most productive, and what fosters creativity and innovative thinking.

But also quite a lot about how much of an impact being around each-other can have.

The new RebelDot office space is in no way what it used to be.

I mean, yea, it is the same space, but reinvented to suit hybrid working and deliver to our people’s need of integrating work with life.

Our HQ on Buftea street has been reimagined to ignite creative thinking, relationship building, fun and comfort at work.

A ton of attention to detail has been invested into every single square foot of this office, from the redesign of our open space to the small writings on the glass doors, the music playlist and even the snacks in the kitchen.

Many of us started getting used to working from coffee shops, so we brought the coffee shop to the office.

In our old office we used to have a boring front desk area and a person waiting for visitors there.. We thought this was to way to go, but what we didn’t know back then was how impersonal this approach was.

What used to be a standard reception, now turned into Rebel Café, the place which pretty much gives, as well as maintains, the pulse of our days at the office.

We even welcomed onboard Amy, a highly talented barista who, in no time, became that one person always welcoming us with good coffee and a genuine smile.

While everyone on the team can choose whether they would like to work from the office or from home, providing people the environment they need to be the best at their game is crucial for our company culture.

The layout of our Cluj HQ is designed to bring productivity, relationship building, and relaxation as well as fun together in the same area. We have organized the space into meeting rooms and team rooms, cafes, lounge rooms, and common areas, as well as a game room. None of the spaces or desks are permanently booked, it’s everyone’s office.

Our team is divided into people working from our offices in Cluj or our office in Oradea, hybrid and remotely. This space is our main HQ, and we want all of our people to know that we are part of a bigger community than the one that can be observed while walking the floor of our office. That’s why we also integrated a caricature wall showcasing all our faces and signatures – a wall of fame thingy.

RebelDot wall

Everything for the people.

We are a human-centered company, and we intend to continue to place great value on the relationships we have with each other at work, be it with clients or colleagues. We love our people. We also believe work should not just be fulfilling, but also fun – that’s a great deal of how we make sure we stay in tune with our wellbeing: having fun together.

We want our new space to be a community place. That’s why friends, family, and the friends of our friends are always welcome here.

rebeldot intern Mihai

Rebel Tech Stories: Looking back on my .NET internship

As part of our conversations with the younger rebels, those of us who started out as interns and who are now an integral part of the team, this time we’ve asked Mihai to share a little about his own journey.

Mihai has been with us for almost a year now, having gone through a 10-week .NET internship initially, where, under the mentorship of some of our smartest engineers, he and his colleagues learned to work effectively as part of a team, learning, failing and growing together.

Like many of the rebel interns, he has quickly blended in and learned along the way how to aim towards a healthy balance between work, life and university. Today, he is building digital solutions to one of our key accounts, and he’s confident that the learning process won’t stop in the near future.

When he got some spare time, you can find him jamming to some classic rock ballads. Occasionally, on a good Friday evening, he’ll show off his cook skills, preparing some of his epic signature hamburgers, having everyone stay for this treat, and mingle in the backyard of our office for hours into the evening. 

When and why did you choose an internship?

I started looking for an internship because the university encouraged but kind of suggested that we should find a place to get some proper work experience. The options were to either work for the university or in an actual company and so I decided to go for the latter.

Did you have a specific pattern when looking for companies to apply for?

I just knew that I wanted to get to a place where people were nice and where I could get along with all my colleagues, although it sounds a bit utopian. I just felt it was a real possibility.

Around the time I decided to go for an internship, a career fair took place which I thought was going to be helpful but ended up confusing me even more.

There were about 30 different companies at that fair, a mixture of everything, You’d attend a presentation, then you’d jump from one to another, without understanding anything about their actions and their culture.. It seemed quite tough to make a choice.

How did you end up choosing RebelDot?

I remember there were a lot of pictures from barbecues / team-buildings, and Christmas parties.

Clearly it looked like a place where people feel good.

Seeing all this, I asked the girls at the RebelDot booth for details about the professional opportunities and, of course, about the technical aspects of the available internship.

I really wanted to do back-end and I saw that the internship was based on the .NET technology which was just what I wanted.

It was a perfect match, in fact, the first internship I have applied for.

How did you feel after the interviews?

To be honest, after the HR interview, I remember telling myself that this is where I want to be. It was a very nice and friendly conversation.

Feeling this oddly familiar vibe from the very beginning, I realized that this is the kind of mood I would like to have at work constantly .

As serious and professional as the conversation was, I didn’t feel it was something procedural, but rather a genuine and casual conversation.

I felt like a human being and not like a “human resource”.

Tell me about your first week as an intern at RebelDot.

I was happy to see that everyone was excited to meet us, me and my fellow intern colleagues, get to know us and support us with any question we had. That day was also when we met our mentor, Emi, kicking off a 4-week training period.

The really interesting part came when we started the actual internship project.

I don’t think any of us have worked in a team in this way before. That is, to try to organize ourselves, each with his bit and his responsibilities, so that in the end we can synchronize and organize as a team.

How was the team-work like as an intern?

To give you some context, everything I had done in terms of “team-work” until then had been in college where someone would come up with ideas and we’d try to help each other. It was very superficial, though…

At the internship, however, everyone had their own piece. We were self-sustaining, but also responsible for the team’s work. When we didn’t know something, we would communicate with each other and teach each other.

I realized that things go much faster and that you learn from others. I saw that as long as everyone does a little bit and we’re transparent to each other, the puzzle comes out until the end.

Besides, I was constantly motivated by our mentor to learn more. I remember him handing out the usual tasks and then telling me “Mihai, this one seems like a breeze. Don’t you want a challenge?” This had me prove to myself that I have a lot of potential to explore and materialize.

Do you have any memorable moments throughout the internship?

Yes. The 3 years anniversary.

It was very nice because I met a lot of people. In the following days after the party, I was even more excited to go to the office because I knew I would recognize a lot of the people I met there.

Everyone was super friendly and I felt comfortable making conversation with every person present there.

This is one advantage of RebelDot being a highly selective company when it comes to people’s character. You can clearly see that, although everyone is kinda different, you are surrounded by nice people.

There ain’t a super-specific -specific pattern. I would say that we rather complement each other with our different personalities.

Which is amazing.

What is one aspect that you enjoy the most as part of RebelDot?

The fact that everyone is open to communication. You can ask anyone for help, no matter what you ask. People will not judge you. When you have open-minded people who care about you and your opinion, it is very easy to come up with suggestions and simply speak your mind up.

That is, in fact, actively promoted within the company – the spirit of initiative, the desire to experiment and implicitly to develop both the business and yourself as a professional and as a human being.

What do you like to do outside work?

I like to play the guitar. I haven’t done it in a while, but I’m still trying to recover on this side.

I like to spend time with people and I have time for all this even if I work.

Sometimes the faculty also intervenes, but even so, I am in a position where I manage to make time for university and the projects for university as well as work and of course, social life.

Did the internship help you as a student?

What I noticed is that the way I am now studying and completing my uni projects has started to be the same. I’m much more organized now. Somehow this way of doing things came organically, a way I learned during the internship, constantly collaborating with my team, but also developing independently.

I like to take things in stride and see how it all works.

I now see programming quite similar to playing the guitar – divide it into small pieces until you get a result.

When you learn a new song, for instance, you try to divide everything into smaller pieces. Take a small part and do it until it’s okay.

The same goes for programming – I have a function to do – I do it in small pieces and I check that each piece works properly. It’s also about the structure.

What advice would you give to a student looking for an internship?

Say what you have in mind at the interviews.

Be exactly the way you are and speak your mind. Be honest with yourself and to the people you’re talking to.

That’s because you can’t get anywhere by being someone you’re not.

If you don’t like the way you are, try to change and get to your best option, or if you like the way you are, just be yourself.

People will appreciate that you are committed and genuine and eventually you will get to the right place, along with the right people.

Let's grow together!

While our internship positions are currently closed, chances are you will find an attractive role on our careers page anyway. Take a shot and apply for it and let’s see if that’s the kind of place where you’d like to kick off a career in tech. 

Product Design Internship

UX & Product Design Internship – A glimpse into how people grow at RebelDot

Hi. My name is Viviana, I am a UX & Product Designer at RebelDot and in this article I am going to talk you through my recent journey as part of this team, trying to give you some insight into the growth opportunities that you’ll find at RebelDot.

Since I too started out as an intern, I am going to take this opportunity to remind you about the UX & Product Design Internship happening this summer.

If you’re a team player who wants to grow both personally and professionally, who is passionate about design, and wants to solve real problems, then you probably might be a good match for us. You can find out more about the role here.

But anyway, let me first tell you how things worked out for me.

Becoming a design intern at RebelDot

After completing my bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences in Romania and being drawn by the aspects of society and culture, I continued my undergraduate studies abroad, in Cardiff, where I studied Product Design. From medical design to creating gaming devices, I explored as many areas of design as possible in order to find the one that I truly like. During my final year of studies, I focused my attention on UI/UX projects, and after working as a UI/UX Designer for nine months, I decided that this is what I wanted to do.

However, this time I was looking for a different Design experience.

I wanted to find meaning in what I do, to constantly fuel my curiosity, to find an environment that challenges and allows me to grow, and, equally important, a place where I feel appreciated and cared for.

And, from the first glance at RebelDot’s website, I felt that it might be the right place. I loved the vibe which was very different from the other tech companies I looked at, I loved how everything was revolving around people and how the values that were promoted resonated with me.

Applying for a design internship

Unfortunately, there weren’t any job openings for Juniors or any Design Internships, but that did not stop me from trying my luck and sending an email. To my surprise, I have got a response and I was invited to the first stage of the recruitment process.

The whole process was a glimpse of the challenge that I signed up for, and a constant reassurance that my initial feeling about RebelDot was more than right. I was straight away introduced to the company’s culture, and I was thrilled by the warmth, kindness, and professionalism that I have noticed from the very first interview.

Getting to know the team and the culture at RebelDot

From the beginning of the internship, I was convinced that RebelDot is a place with an amazing culture and with people that share the same values; a place where I felt included and appreciated right away. Over the span of three months, I met wonderful people that helped me develop both from a personal and professional perspective, and I have always received the support and guidance that I needed.

What I loved the most was the approach towards the internship program which provided me with a hands-on experience of what it means to be a UX & Product Designer, covering all the aspects and the steps of a design process. I was taught how to take ownership of every decision, how to be in control during presentations and client meetings, and how to communicate effectively. I was always encouraged to explore, to question everything, and to find the answers to different problems by myself.

I really enjoyed the fact that my mentor, Tom, did not tell me the answers straight away, but instead, guided me towards finding those solutions myself, allowing me to use my creativity and to develop my own way of seeing things.

Getting to know the job

Going deeper into the project, tasks were becoming more and more challenging, but my level of confidence was also rising. Having people that were constantly encouraging me and giving me constructive feedback was accelerating my progress and was helping me to change my mindset.

Instead of being scared and anxious about the challenges that were coming, I started to see them on a more positive note and to make of them an opportunity to grow. Tom went above and beyond to make this internship experience as close to reality as possible, being both a mentor and playing the role of the client, in such a credible way that I was perceiving him as two separate individuals.

I like how the theoretical aspects were perfectly combined with the practical ones, and how I always had the chance to take a step back and reflect on the things I learned, on the things that went well and on the ones that didn’t, getting a chance to learn from my mistakes, and to understand how I can improve my skills.

Actually doing the job

The most challenging aspects were the ones that involved talking in front of people, especially during the client meetings, and during my first usability test. When conducting the usability testing, I actually wrote my whole speech down (including the “hello” part), so I won’t forget anything, but the fact that everyone was open-minded, relaxed, and willing to help, made it very easy for me to get over those constraints and made the whole process really enjoyable.

Having access to stakeholders was also a great opportunity as I was able to see how things work from multiple perspectives, to understand the different needs, the technical limitations, and to learn how to collaborate and communicate effectively. As it is not only about creating beautiful designs, but also about creating feasible products that address the real problems.

See if RebelDot is the kind of team you're looking for

Maybe you’re not a student anymore. Or who knows, maybe you didn’t even enroll into formal studies. Perhaps you’re just really into observing the smallest of details and designing beautiful, minimalist or edgy, yet practical pieces. Point is, those skills that you’ve been polishing for a while now could keep on delighting the human eye while also solving some real problems and support communities of people that you haven’t even thought of.

I for one realised that this could be a fulfilling alternative thanks to a module that caught my attention. To you this breakthrough might happen only by taking a shot at trying something different. Or not. Who knows. Maybe you’re better off designing concert posters or stock doodles.

That’s still freaking awesome.

However. If you feel like there’s exploration to be made in this field, just send your protfolio over and let’s see if that’s the kind of team you’d like to be a part of.

Victoria React Native intern rebeldot

Rebel Tech Stories: Landing an internship at RebelDot.

We are still looking for driven and talented students to apply for our 9 week .NET/React paid internship. That’s why we figured we’d talk to Victoria, one of our very last interns who we met this summer and who became, in the meantime, an integral part of our development teams, working on a global project, with some of the latest tech.

In this article Victoria is going to talk to us about her experience as an intern at RebelDot, discussing in detail the journey she went through to land a permanent role as part of our team and work with us on developing digital products, technology solutions to current, real problems.

How did you decide to apply for an internship?  

I’ve started applying for internships ever since my second year because I wanted to already apply most, if not all the theoretical aspects which uni has taught me. I wanted to see how things are functioning, outside university, out there in the real life.   

And so I started applying in my second year, without any success, only to carry on with my efforts in my 3rd year of studies. 

I took on this quest and started looking for different opportunities and collectives until I found one that I genuinely liked. And who liked me too.  

That’s how I got into RebelDot. 😊    

Did you know from before the kind of company you wanted to work in? 

To be honest, I was super confused, I didn’t really know what to expect.. I have never worked before, until this last summer and I didn’t know how life was going to be outside university, not just work-life.. 

I didn’t have any specific expectations or super vivid scenarios. I just knew I wanted to resonate with the vibe of the company and to simply get along with the people in there. 

Do you remember what the internship application process was like at RebelDot? 

The very first interview I’ve had was with Oana, one of our People and Culture specialists. I remember that it was a very casual conversation, the kind of talk that makes you feel you had known that person since way back. 

I got to have a glimpse into how the culture was like at RebelDot, hear more about the project that we were going to work on and.. Make a new friend, actually. 

After that I had the technical interview with Andrei one of RebelDot’s team leads, who made me feel super comfortable, even though it was a rather techy interview to which I didn’t know some of the answers.. 

He managed to not make me feel frustrated for not knowing, but instead directed the whole conversation in such way so that I could figure out the answers myself. 

Which was quite motivating and comforting. Especially as a first impression. 

What was your first impression of RebelDot? 

My interview with Oana was the first interaction that I had with RebelDot, so to speak.  

I guess I made a more objective opinion after the interview with Andrei. By then, I’ve had the chance to have talked to 2 people already who validated my impression – the fact that there is a chill vibe in this company, the kind of ambiance that makes me feel comfortable and relaxed. 

I got the sense that people are motivated to build amazing technology, but more than that, to care for each other and build meaningful relationships. I liked it. I felt like I belong to this culture. 

What made you choose RebelDot? 

Leaving aside the reasons I’ve previously mentioned, another one would be the opportunity to work with React Native. That’s something that I wanted very much and that was not possible in other companies as an intern, for some reason. 

Do you remember how you found out about the internship at RebelDot? 

I have heard of RebelDot before through my colleagues who have already applied for some of the internship opportunities. Most of them told me that the technical test was fairly difficult and that they only got negative answers.  

I guess this is something that intrigued me. I took it as a challenge, knowing that RebelDot, as open as it is, wasn’t really a place for everyone. 

In terms of technical details, were there other reasons why you accepted the offer from RebelDot? 

I knew we were going to work on a real project. We were told that there was a training that we had to go through, which got me super excited because, although I really wanted to work with React Native, until that moment I have never had the chance to.  

Having studied mostly Java in university I figured maybe it was the time I’d learn something new, especially if I was offered a training opportunity. After I saw the RebelDot opening for the React Native Internship I told myself “that’s gotta be a sign”. 

Do you remember your first week of internship at RebelDot?  

Definitely. The first week was super fun and I was fortunate to already have some “friends” in the group that I was part of. Oana and Andrei.  

Besides them I got to meet the entire team, 17 interns, divided into 3 teams.  

The first day was when we all got to know each other. We were this weird mix of people from different backgrounds and universities.  

It was amazing to see how involved the senior rebels were in this project and this new collective.  

Considering that they were Senior Developers or Delivery Managers, the kind of people that you’d think are super busy, it was genuinely surprising to see how dedicated they were to make us feel welcomed and comfortable and excited for what was going to follow.  

Right from the start, after me and my colleagues have been allocated to the project, we benefited from close support from Andrei (Team Lead), Oana (People and Culture specialist), Iulia (People and Culture Business Partner and Tom (Head of Product Design). 

They talked us through the entire product development lifecycle, which helped us get a broad perspective on what we were going to work on, as well as create a sense of informality between each other which obviously made our communication super efficient, transparent and friendly.  

I could say that we were privileged to have this opportunity, but is not really a privilege because this is the way every internship unfolds at RebelDot. Which is pretty cool. 

How would you summarize a day as an intern at RebelDot?  

Team-work. 

The most important thing I learned as an intern was team-work. In university, most of what you do as a student is then passed through different tools such as anti-plagiarism, so that your work would never be similar to what your colleagues would do. While it does make sense to some extent, I found it rather absurd and upsetting.  

On the flipside, throughout my internship I had my own tasks, but also the freedom to work on the very tasks together with my colleague/s so that we’d be more efficient, but also learn from each other.  

We’d spend hours in huddles and slack calls, talking and doing what is also referred to as “peer programming”.  

You know what.. I’ve seen that “this meeting could’ve been an email” meme so many times, but it was just interesting to see how, in our case, the interns, the moments which brought the most value professionally, but mainly personally, were those never-ending meetings. 

I mean.. that’s what crystalized our team.. constant communication helped us develop chemistry, a collaboration that resulted in quality code and an environment where you just liked being a part of. 

How did having a mentor help you as an intern?  

First of all, Andrei shared with us his own experience and journey. He knew how things were supposed to play out. At the beginning of each sprint, he would give us the direction, that true north, the way in which we had to manage ourselves and each other, the way we had to provide feedback and the way we had to use GitHub in order to make our work easier and more efficient, developing an objective perspective on our output.  

I very much enjoyed the fact that this learning process never stopped at the work per-se. Often, there were random moments throughout the day when, if Andrei would feel like he had something insightful to tell us, he would just say it on the spot. I sensed that he was driven by an honest wish to help us develop as engineers, but mostly as people.  

What skills should a student have to apply for an internship opportunity? 

Technically, I’d say a solid knowledge of basic programming concepts such databases, OOP and algorithmics. 

Besides, I’d recommend students to try experimenting their hard skills on a personal project so that they’d learn the basic concepts I was mentioning before by actually practicing them.  

And, obviously, a strong drive to learn and be open to new technologies.  

In terms of soft skills and personal qualities, what really helped me was simply being open-minded and nice to the people around me. 

What does being a rebel mean to you?  

Not necessarily thinking outside the box, but just thinking differently about things. Having the courage to stand out by being yourself and by engaging with people. 

Do you feel like RebelDot is a place where you can be the rebel you just described?  

Yes, I think it is something that happens on a daily basis. I mean we were never constrained to do things in a particular rigid way. We are encouraged to figure things by ourselves, using our own reasoning so that, in case we mess things up, our mentors would help us get back on track by perfecting our reasoning and not by blindly following some else’s way of thinking. 

rebeldot internship .net

Become a part of our team!

If this sounds like the kind of team you’d want to be a part of, go apply for our latest .NET/React Internship and give it shot at becoming our next rebel colleague.

RebelDot 2021

Looking back on 2021: RebelDot’s values in action

Hi,

It’s me again, this time with a recap of some of the coolest stuff we did this year @RebelDot.

For this article, I thought I’d ditch the usual format of listing all our achievements and rather talk about our core values and specifically how everything that we did in 2021 is, in a way or another, tied to each of these 5 values – togetherness, growth, care, fun and fulfillment.

Although I have tried to discuss them separately, keep in mind that they all exist in harmony and that each of the initiatives mentioned as specific to one value, can easily be interpreted into any of the other 4 of our guiding values.

Let’s proceed, shall we?

Togetherness

After almost two years of leaving the office to work in a hybrid setup, we gradually came to the realization that it is a blessing in disguise.

Having to adapt to this new context we started thinking creatively, more than ever, about the ways we can engage our people virtually.

With about 78 new people in our team, and an overall number of 150 rebels (70 more than last year, around this time), we started placing emphasis on the informal nuance of our interactions and gave our shot at extending this casual friendly vibe outside the office.

We did so by setting up events that broke the tech bubble and introduced people to new experiences, things that we’ve probably never tried or even thought of trying, moments of novelty that we got through together.

Ever thought about getting a sailing certificate?

Probably not. And neither did our 10 rebels who went to Croatia for a week to do so. Or going to a team building where you get to literally build something for the community around you? Or how about learning how to cook some gourmet pasta dish through an online masterclass thought by one of our full-time Delivery Managers, part-time “remote chefs”?

These are all just a fraction of the experiences that made togetherness seem less and less vague for our people and gave them more reasons to look forward to.

And, by the way, this sense of togetherness didn’t stop at our colleagues but was infused well into our client relationships too. In fact, one of our biggest clients to this day became our close partner after having spent a full day at our cozy office, sensing the “rebel” atmosphere, listening to our company’s story, our individual tales, and ambitious vision, all while enjoying a BBQ in our mildly popular backyard.

rebeldot yard

Growth

When it comes to growth, there are a couple of actions, part of our yearly strategy, which we do to make sure that we stay on top of our game, delivering state of the art digital product, and building healthy relationships. Yes, I am speaking of formal learning programs here: leadership & feedback trainings, workshops, and access to digital libraries. We very often even read books together, and later discuss them at our morning coffees, day to day meetings and of course, the #book-lovers Slack channel.

But these haven’t been the engine of our growth this year.

An important yet sometimes forgotten component of growth is the acceleration of growth that happens while spending time and overcoming day to day challenges with the right people. Now when I say right, I don’t mean likeminded and cultural fitted people. Think the opposite.

By adding 78 new people to our team, we’ve learned that real growth happens when we embrace our differences in opinion and culture. It’s when you stop doing thigs because ‘this is how they have been done before’ and consider new, rebel ways of doing things.

In 2021 we onboarded no more than 27 interns on areas such as React Native development, .NET development, People and Culture, Product Design and even Blockchain development. It is not a practice that we are new to, as we’ve been creating opportunities for students ever since the company took shape. Still, it is the most internship positions we have ever offered.

RebelDot culture

Here’s a word from our People and Culture department on why creating internship opportunities was an integral part of our agenda in 2021:

“We wanted to be more intentional in growing new talent through our internship programs, while also creating mentorship opportunities for our current rebels (as in RebelDot we also believe in the power of taking care of others). This year was particularly tough in selecting a limited number of interns, as along the recruitment process we realized that the competition was super strong and that we had to make difficult choices between many high-caliber candidates. And this is why we decided to add a few extra spots in our programs, as it would have been a pity not to continue with candidates who were fit in terms of technical skills, as well as from a cultural and values perspective.”

This lowered the company’s overall age to 28 and made youthfulness and adolescent-like energy a default vibe at the office. We probably spend more time on Tik-Tok than we did in 2020, and let’s just say that our parties have gotten a little bit more intense.

rebel hoodie

It would probably be a bit of an assumption to say that our clients felt these aspects of organic growth too, but one thing that is for sure when it comes to growing our clients’ businesses is that we made sure to always be there, from the napkin wireframes and all the way to releasing their digital products in stores. Just like we did in all these years.

Besides, we are now proud to have also amplified our service offering, starting 2022, we can run the products we are building, going beyond digital product discovery & design, product adding post-launch support as continuation of the full product development process we follow at RebelDot.

Some of our rebels also went on to land some important certifications, or pivot to roles that increased their responsibility but also catered to their ever-growing aspirations and potential.

Care

For this aspect I am going to share my personal perspective for I became truly inspired by the way care for both my colleagues and the surrounding community is practiced here, at RebelDot.

I’ve learned at university that nowadays, each respectable company “has to have” a CSR plan. Basically, for those of you not fans of the corporate lingo, think of it as a carefully articulated plan to help others for the betterment of the world..

I’ve never really doubted that companies and the people part of these entities simply have a genuine willingness to do good, but “packaging” it in this super corporate practice just isn’t it for me.. I mean, it might be the norm, it might make doing good mainstream, which is very much needed, but this sort of “branding” simply put a superficial if not even selfish nuance to doing good.

And that’s totally not the norm at RebelDot.

Now don’t get me wrong. Obviously, the People and Culture department is making sure that we hold a solid awareness of the social causes, as well as the means in which we could support our community, extending well beyond just developing digital products.

Still, it saves plenty of room for random acts of kindness, the kind of unplanned help that you offer because you’ve been moved, inspired or asked for in that particular moment.

I remember when I started working here, ready to start showing off my academic skills to create a fancy CSR plan then seeing Tudi, our CEO, casually approaching me and my colleagues on a daily basis to let us know about social causes that he found and that needed our immediate help.

Imagine how great I felt to have some of my (once esteemed) university learnings disregarded in such a beautiful way. To have this reality check and observe that acts of generosity happen naturally here, without really planning months ahead for causes that maybe need urgent actions. This was one of the first rebel plays I noticed and loved and adhered to ever since.

Fun

There was a time when we used to say that coding is fun. Eventually we started to dust off the vague industry cliches and really dig into the essence of our values. We realized that building apps is more challenging than it is fun. But being part of an atypical team navigating a big mess is what (truly) makes it fun.

It is the process and the people. The ways in which the seriousness of a project is alternated with the informality of your colleagues in what is supposed to be a stiff, professional stand-up meeting. It is the inside jokes that you and your team develop, the endless memes on “that Slack channel” or the shamelessly extended lunch breaks where you bond together over some cheap takeaway noodles.

Not to mention about the periodical after hours or late Fridays at the office, where roles start to dissolve and where the authenticity of each rebel somehow harmonize into an almost identical collective willingness to share stories, get to know the protagonists, and build genuine friendships.

It wouldn’t make sense to start listing the fun initiatives that we participated in this year, because, really, you’d probably finish reading this article next year. It is not something super specific, like coding or a team-building, but more like onboarding the right people and simply letting them be.

rebeldot anniversary

Fullfilment

Having a fulfilling job clearly is not just about the work itself. While we constantly try to take care of this aspect by handpicking ideas and founders we truly believe in, matching them with rebels who show an interest in those particular visions, there are other aspects which, taken altogether, can ignite a deeper meaningfulness to the job.

We do believe that you are much more than your role which is why we strive to create a context where your true colors can surface and where you can progress on all levels. Take the example of Vali, one of our day 1 colleagues, who actually started out as an intern and is now a veteran React Native Developer.

He also happens to be a very talented beach volleyball player, competing regularly in both local and national tournaments. This year we found out about his intention to compete in the biggest national contest so we sponsored the entire freaking competition. Hell, we even designed the jerseys for all the participants. No second thoughts, just straight action. It wasn’t even part of a strategy of some sort, but a spontaneous wish to do so right after the moment we found out about this. Just like our “CSR” initiatives.

RebelDot values 2021

Come work with us!

If you consider yourself a kind & supportive human, you have a sweet spot for all things tech and you’re up to new challenges, you might have a home with us. 🏠

What we are looking for is not know-it-alls, nor ideological fits.

We want to grow together while creating a space in which diversity is important and your different perspective will contribute to building great digital products. 🚀

So if you think we might be a good fit for your personality and career ambitions, have a look on our careers page and give it a shot! 

As we continue to expand our web and mobile apps development team to support more companies with our technical expertise, we have around 20 open positions and an internship in the works, so plenty of opportunities for you to become part of our team of rebels.

We look forward to meeting you!

RebelDot316-1920-min

A rebel way of giving in 2021 🎁

Ever since we emerged as a tech company in Transylvania, we have been paying equal attention to building products that have a meaningful impact, as well as developing our surrounding local communities with actions that go far beyond any technology innovation – like empathy and commitment.

We knew that for technology to make an impact, we first must address the more important, yet overlooked issue.

For example, we could not just gift the kids in the rural areas with laptops and tablets if they didn’t have any electricity, heat or even food.

And because of that, we wished to be more involved and to actively do something.

We hardly ever had a clear strategy of what the industry calls CSR. Most of the causes we’ve raised awareness about and the people we’ve helped have happened without even planning them in advance. We saw a need for it, and we acted upon it.

No calendar, no procedures and no corporate silo to pass on budgets for simply doing good.

We had a common goal – to give as much as we could to the ones less fortunate than us.

Getting all the rebels involved was the easiest part. The hard part came when we had to choose from different social causes. But it was the kind of challenge that we would’ve gladly taken on infinite times.

In fact, we promised ourselves we would carry on with these projects and initiatives all year long.

Being exposed to the aching community, to so many groups of people and even animals in need of help, we didn’t just wish to help one cause, only because it’s Christmas, Thanksgiving or whatever specific day when, suddenly, people remember that there is kindness within themselves.

We didn’t need a reason to help, but a means through which we can become instinctively willing, able and inclined to do so – to commit to more random acts of kindness.

Here’s how we decided to do good in 2021. 💕

We built something 🧱

In mid 2021, we planned our first teambuilding, ever since the entire pandemic hit. We were more than pleased and excited about it. Almost 80 rebels were onboard and ready to go to a retreat in the rural area of Bihor, Romania.

Besides the excitement of seeing each other again, face to face, after so many months that we already lost count, we also had a mission. For 2 days straight, we were #rebelswithacause, building playgrounds for the kids in three rural areas of Bihor and painting the walls from their schools, adding a little touch of colorful rebellion to them.

We got the chance to meet the children in person, and the surprise came, ironically or not, from them, even though we bought presents for each and one of them. They put on traditional dance choreography and did a nice little show for us which felt like a flash mob, right when we were about to leave the place.

Speaking with our team members afterward, everyone seemed to have enjoyed this. It was a unique experience, but different in an effective way since we broke the pattern of a usual and traditional teambuilding getaway.

rebeldot painting schools
  • Renovate two classrooms ✅
  • Build three playgrounds ✅
  • Enjoy a delightful traditional dance ✅
  • Build a stronger rebel community ✅

A yard sale, but give it another meaning 🏠

The story might go on to an unusual way of our giving philosophy.

Also happening this year, we had 3 different initiatives which had a primary scope to help the community around us.

This time was a family from Belis, Romania.

Organizing a yard sale, in both our offices from Oradea and Cluj, all the rebels had the responsibility to bring something for sale. It did not matter what as long as it was still usable in a good condition or… edible. 😅

rebeldot yard sale cluj
  • Help the rebels declutter and recycle by selling the things they do not use ✅
  • Eat delicious food cooked by our colleagues and their moms that we love for gifting us food all the time ✅
  • Raise 3.500 RON ✅
  • Help a family in need by donating the amount of money raised from the yard sale ✅

The annual shoe box project 🎅🏻

With everyone running like crazy to buy the perfect Christmas present for their family, friends, and loved ones, in December we wanted to stop the run for a minute and think about what we can do to be of use. 

We stopped and thought about all the children who need us the most, given the season. 

Just like last year, we partnered with CERT and created 72 shoe boxes filled with goodies for kids in rural areas around Cluj, Transylvania. 

So, we embraced the mission again, a different one, but kind of the same, I might say – being Santa for one day.  

Everyone got enrolled, taking on the responsibility of finding the best gifts for the kids. It was not hard because we had everything prepared. We knew the cause we were going to help and the kids we were going to surprise with. We even had their names, ages and locations written on our personal notes. 

Everything turned out to be so satisfying. At the end of it, our hearts were full, and their Christmas tree was full of hope, joy, and excitement that Santa really came this year.  

RebelDot CERT
  • Get creative buying gifts for the kids ✅
  • Ship 72 gift boxes ✅
  • Put a smile on the little one’s faces, being Santa for a day ✅

The charity auctions 💰

I left the most amazing and inspiring story at the end of this article. And I hope it ends up inspiring you just as it inspired me. 

How often have you heard about tech companies organizing charity auctions?  

If you are like me, never. Until now.  

The number of people involved in this project was beyond our expectations and our rebels utterly amazed us. We have had such a variety of products, some of them can even be called a must have in your house. And I am referring here to home decorations, books, lots, and lots of cookies, pancakes, cheesecakes, and all kinds of desserts. Even dinner reservations were made by some of our colleagues, who offered to cook their house specialty, and include the transportation to the winner or the winners, depending on how many rebels were able to bet on that offer and win their prize.  

Of course, we could not miss the annual sausages, so known here in Romania, which were the most wanted ones, yet the most expensive ones.  

From books to toys, home decorations and food, you were able to bet and fight for what our soul and mind really wanted.  

In the end, we managed to have fun, fun creating our own game, from which we could give back even more. Give back to our community, to those less fortunate than us.  

Seeing that we can contribute to a little spark of someone’s wish, for only he knows how long, was everything to us. 

rebeldot charity auction
  • Engage the teams in a fun activity ✅
  • Raise 4 125 EUR to 8 different social causes ✅

Our Christmas gift for our clients? ✨

We decided to double the sum on their behalf, increasing the amount raised from 4 125 EUR to 8 250 EUR. Because we could not decide on one single cause to donate to, we decided to split the amount.

Here is how we wrapped this one up:  

‘’Hi Jason, 

Were you expecting a branded mug or T-shirt from us this Christmas? 

While we look forward to sending some to you with another occasion, this year we want to break the pattern of material corporate gifts, and we are giving you something that is truly meaningful. The gift of giving🎁 

Like last year, this time, we picked a few social causes we wanted to give back to. 

For that, we organized an auction and had our people bidding for random items offered by colleagues, from traditional food to DIY Christmas decorations, scented candles, a whole lotta cakes, folk nights, or even custom memes. 

We called it #rebelswithacause. It was a brilliant way of having fun while giving back.  

Now, what does all this have to do with our present for you?  

We took the money raised from the charity auction and doubled the sum on your behalf. It’s our way of saying thank you for being a trusted partner and contributing to our mission of building great products while being mindful of the world around us.  In total, we managed to raise 8 250 EUR to 8 different social causes.  

Cliché or not, it is a Christmas 🎄 miracle that you, together with us, made it happen.  

Happy holidays! 

Yours truly, 

The team @ RebelDot’’ 

RebelDot Christmas
  • Give clients a meaningful gift ✅ 
  • Raise 8 250 EUR to 8 different social causes ✅ 

Our giving did not stop here. As we are always looking for people and organizations that have an impact on the world, we found ourselves sponsoring sport competitions like volley tournaments and rallies, sponsoring an entrepreneurial bootcamp for kids, and the purchase of medical equipment for medical institutions in Cluj.  

In the corporate & business world, doing good can easily be interpreted as an empty brag or is reduced to purely transactional brand building efforts.  

2021 has given us an important lesson about doing good as a company. One, you do not need an elaborated CSR plan. Second, fun and teambuilding activities are better when they serve a higher purpose.  

RebelDot Intern Filip

From intern to full-time rebel – Filip’s love story for coffee and technology

Some might wonder why a love story. Because Filip has a passion for coffee as he has for technology.

He just ordered a new espresso machine, right before our talk. 😊

Filip is a Software Developer who started as an intern in RebelDot 4 months ago.

Since many of you are considering applying for an internship position as part of our team, we figured he might have some useful insights to share with you – behind-the-scenes details about life as an intern here and how to eventually land a permanent job.

Let’s start from the beginning. How did it all start?

It was all there before I even knew it. Joggling around medicine and architecture made me understand that I cannot see myself doing anything else besides technology and everything that comes with it.

During high school, where I had a primary focus on mathematics and computer science, I understood that, and yes, I was delighted by it.

You might ask, why technology? I was deeply passionate and curious about the “hidden mystery” everyone was talking about. Being able to create programs, video games, solving puzzles for different industries and their business, was beyond me, and because of that I was eager to learn more.

Why choosing an internship?

To be honest, looking back now, I am connecting the dots. It’s funny how this (connecting the dots) has been a recurring theme in RebelDot for a while now, and we keep referring to Steve Job’s speech.

Being in my second year at the university, the year you are supposed to find an internship, they organized some sort of a workshop for all the students, where different IT organizations were enrolled.

All you had to do was to choose one from that list and go for it.

As you can imagine, it was an entire list full of startups as well as enterprise companies, so it was a bit hard to limit myself to choose only one name from there. You might wonder how I did it?

First, I analyzed their websites, from a user experience point of view, to more narrowed in colors, texts and visuals. What mattered the most to me was the feeling I was getting after scrolling through the company.

Second, I let myself inspired by the initial impression and I made the final decision based on how effectively they managed to communicate with you, via one simple website.

That’s how I chose RebelDot. Their storytelling was centered around people and their values had a loud resonance to what I believe in.

Why us? How was the entire experience for you?

At a glance, I had the feeling that the focus of the organization is narrowed around people and nothing else. People who help you succeed. So yes, I followed my intuition, and I am super excited about my decision.

If I would have to describe how the entire experience was for me, I would sum up my feelings about it: togetherness & care.

Imagine how one day of an intern’s life was at RebelDot.

What really impressed me is that whenever we would start off a call in the morning – a stand-up meeting, we weren’t just having a small talk for the sake of it to then move on to “more serious” topics.

I remember that our Team Leader was genuinely interested in how my weekend was like, for example, or what places I have visited. Essentially, everyone wanted to make sure that we feel good personally and appreciated. This definitely helped in improving my performance on those particular days, but also overall.

At the same time, I felt that I was learning something new, day by day. We were assigned in different teams, as I was not the only intern at that time, and each team had its own mentor.

So, for the first 3 weeks of the internship, we had training workshops in which we covered different topics and based on those intuitive discussions, we cut down on individual tasks for the week in progress.

Overall, for me, it was a learning experience.

What was the most challenging part of this internship?

I’d say working with a team.

I know, it might sound unfamiliar, but during my university days, we always received projects individually. Coming to this internship and discovering that I need to synchronize with the members of my team, and most importantly counting on them to do their own part, was new for me.

At the same time, it helped me understand that it’s ok to count on someone else, it’s ok to ask for something you haven’t heard or know anything about.

At the end of it, this means being part of a team.

What’s your advice to the next generation of interns?

Keep in mind that attitude beats knowledge.

No matter how much knowledge you acquire in time, the way you maintain your attitude once you’re on a learning curve is detrimental to your progress both personally and professionally.

For example: during this internship, I felt respected and appreciated for who I am, which gave me the confidence I needed.

I do believe that this level of confidence came also from our Leads and Mentors because you were able to ask any questions, as dumb as they were, without feeling stupid. You were appreciated for asking first because it showed your interest and desire to learn.

The other advice would be to allow yourself to make mistakes now, once you’re in an internship, because it’s supposed to be that way, as it’s supposed to help you grow.

It’s safe to make mistakes while you’re still an intern. And it’s safe to make mistakes and learn from them even after being an intern at RebelDot.

What’s your plan for the future you?

At this very moment I see myself becoming a full stack developer, rather than being oriented only towards front-end or back-end. I want to have the full picture of it, knowing that I would be able to create, develop and maintain everything from scratch. Alongside this comes the opportunity to discover new technologies which could help me achieve extraordinary things in the future.

I am thankful for this opportunity of being an intern first, then switching to a full-time position, because it helped me grow personally and succeed professionally.

If this article made you curious about how being an intern at RebelDot feels like, keep an eye on our careers page, as we are going to announce a new internship for Spring 2022!

Teambuilding Rebeldot

A team-building diary – How we got together by giving back to the community

Almost two weeks ago, our People and Culture department set up one of the best and most literal team buildings any of us has ever had. In a time when it got so tempting to be fantasizing about extravagant and “out-of-the-box” activities, we chose to go for the one solution hidden in plain sight this whole time – a team-building where people get together by literally building something for the community around. ⛏️

And not just anything.

We found three schools in a remote, yet utterly welcoming village in Bihor and built playgrounds for each one of them.

After all, we do have a new office playground too, so we figured that since we enjoy it so much, then surely the 100+ kids are going to absolutely love having their own.

Some of us gave our shot at painting the walls with some joyful illustrations, while others exploited their constructions skills by putting together what seemed to be a simple structure. Spoiler alert, it wasn’t. At least not like assembling an IKEA couch. Which.. I guess is not always easy either.. Anyway. 

Here’s how it went:

Day 1

We kick off our long-awaited adventure by gathering almost two thirds of our people at the office and have everyone tested to make sure that we are in for an epic, yet safe trip.

Once everyone gets their negative results back, we hop on the bus, two busses actually, and head towards Bratca, a nice little village surrounded by nature and picturesque views.

Now most of the faces are quite familiar, as we had seen each-other before in our weekly Friday company meetings. Still, since much of the online interaction we’ve had was only with those part of our departments, there is this sense of excitement in the air, knowing that we are finally going to step beyond our closed circles and really get to know the rest of the people, which are enough to worry about remembering names 😅..

RebelDot party

I mean, think about it.. Almost two years have passed since we last had a team building.

In the meantime, we tripled in size, growing from 40 to about 120 people, we moved from our glossy low-key corporate office into a nice little house and started working in a hybrid environment.

To most of us, getting to know each other got harder the moment we left the office and began adapting to the new remote work environment.

People were still seeing each other, but most of the interactions were rather intentional and not so much accidental, which meant that despite all the daily meetings and online initiatives, random & organic relationships were yet to be built.

On the other hand, adapting to this new kind of virtual togetherness made us even more grateful for the moments spent in the company of each other. Hence the great turnout of our most recent offline initiatives such as the Movie Nights, the Wine-Tasting evenings, the Summer BBQs, Board-games Sessions, or the Yard Sale.

This is also why this team-building, as late as it was, came just at the right time.

Now going back at it,

Rebels at work

9:07 PM

We break the ice in this first evening, or more like melt it, with a cup of mulled wine and some small talk near a big campfire. Shortly after, we all enjoy a cozy dinner together and successfully fail in keeping our rebels well-rested and contained for what was going to happen the day after.

What you could deem as “pre-party party” happens organically with most of the people preferring to dance and chat for hours into the night which, although was not part of the actual timetable, is the best thing we did not plan for.

Everyone’s just naturally getting together, talking so casually, like they know each other from before…

There are no fixed roles anymore, no labels, just people. 😊

People enjoying finally being together.

A highly sociable setting powered by this extended state of isolation and.. well… the spiritual wonders of kitsch music. 

Rebel Party

Day 2 - 9:07 AM

Breakfast is served and soon enough we all set off for a trip. We split into 3 groups and after a 30-minute bus ride deep into the natural landscapes of Bihor, we all reach the destination and learn what our actual quest is going to be. The excitement is real and you can just feel it – It’s bound to be an adventure.

The task is pretty straightforward – paint the walls of each classroom and build a playground.

And here we are now, 3 groups of roughly 25 people, trying to be Agile “on-site”.

We’re told that we got till 7PM to finish everything, which means that there’s no time for stages like wireframing or MVP development.

This playground has to be flawless from the very first try so no beta version or further updates.

We get moving.

Some of us give our shot at painting the walls, some others start chopping the necessary materials and some others want to show that the “engineer” in their JD does not only stand for software, handling the drill machine like it’s second nature.

It is fun.

A bit cold and maybe a challenge for those of us who stayed long into the previous night, but fun, nevertheless.

2:30 PM – We're getting there 😀

Hours fly by, the paintings are gradually coming to life, the playgrounds.. not so much, but good thing there’s still some time to undo the mistakes, slightly panic together and miraculously find a last-minute solution.

It’s actually fascinating to just step outside for a minute and look at how everyone is being useful, no matter their skill. If a couple of hours ago we were all just a big mess, now everyone is busy, even if it’s varnishing, drilling, carrying planks or.. figuring out how to help, also known as “giving indications” 😂..

It really does look like a cross-functional team, a cluster of smaller groups that work on separate tasks, but constantly communicate with each other to deliver the best solution. Kinda like what we do for our clients. 

From time to time you get to see people zoning out, being absorbed by the beautiful scenery and then smiling, acknowledging the present moment, the fact that we’re all here, happy, doing this thing to make someone even happier. 🎈

rebels building a playground

7:15 PM – Yes, we do overtime. No, we don’t leave things undone.

Three hours later, we make the final adjustments and start packing. The energy levels are slowly draining, but the satisfaction is through the roof.

We look at the final product and can’t help but think – we made this. 🤩

We all organize for the celebratory final photo, but not before our QAs do their thing and stress-test both the playground slides and swings. – Say cheeeeese! 📸

This second night is actually supposed to be even more exciting than last night because this is when the “official” rebel party happens. This time we got an actual DJ with a professional sound system and it shows. We party till early in the morning and create more memorable moments on the dancefloor.

Day 3 – a morning full of gratitude and memories to look back on.

Here we are now, enjoying a coffee on Sunday morning, having just finished a short hike, kind of wishing we’d stay here for at least a few more days.

But there’s still time for one last surprise before we set to go back home.

We’re invited to attend a dance performance in the parking lot, something random enough to get everyone outside and see what’s going on.

Turns out some of the kids we’ve made all these things for, found out about our not-so-secret initiative and thought about showing their gratitude in an original way, to say the least.

By setting up an impromptu traditional dance show which is just…wholesome. We also get hand-written thank you notes and a genuine smile from these innocent little souls.

And we know it.

Giving back was the best thing we could have done together

So.. Why not keep on doing this? Building teams by literally building things..

I guess we now found our side-hustle. 😊

bihor teambuilding

Join RebelDot and build impactful digital products and meaningful friendships. 🚀

We do have quite a lot of vacancies on our careers page so go get your next Rebel team-building pass by applying to become part of our team. 

You will grow with us and get the chance to work with highly skilled engineers and visionary founders on some of the most promising ideas.

Besides, we got a whole bunch of activities going on, all of them designed for you to really enjoy working here.

A place where you get to be more of yourself, where we actively work to help you achieve your goals professional and personal goals. 

RebelDot culture

We are celebrating the RebelDot 3rd anniversary 🎉

Last Saturday we celebrated our 3 years anniversary at @RebelDot.

[….] After months spent watching the number of people on Slack increase week by week, we now had a chance to see just how much we grew during the past year. [Who would have imagined that as a company that has togetherness and care at its core, we will have a period longer than 1 year in which we will not meet in person.]

Fast forward one year, we are looking at last week’s anniversary party pictures.

RebelDot celebrating 3 years

We celebrated ourselves and the amazing things we built together in our 3rd year as rebels. Here’s what has been keeping us busy. 🎉

48 new rebels have joined the team, RebelDot getting closer to 150 people (collaborators included).

Probably the best thing that we have achieved this year is that we continued to grow while strengthening our culture and company values.

Even at distance, our People and Culture helped us grow our team remotely, onboarding no less than 48 new rebels.

In 2018, we started with the bold goal of creating a company that brings great value to its customers and that is valued by employees for its culture. Back then we were 30 rebels with big dreams and an outlook that was less than great. Today, 3 years later, thanks to our great colleagues, after a 500% growth in size, we are looking at an extremely bright future.

The new way of doing work was an open invitation to knowing people beyond their day-to-day roles in RebelDot through their homes, peers, friends, and kids that popped up in the backgrounds of our Teams calls. It conveyed a sense of closeness and intimacy that nurtured the organizational culture beyond any coordinated effort.

rebeldot retrospective 3 years

NFT Marketplaces, Banking, Telemedicine, Energy, GreenTech, or PropTech are just a few of the industries we’ve been tackling this year.

For the 3rd year in a row, I am fortunate enough to have met yet new business founders driven to build promising ventures with the help of technology and create new market opportunities through innovation.

Last year, a lot of companies were not sure if they were going to keep up with their digitalization plans, but it looks like the “uncertain time “ that we navigated amplified the need of startups, SMEs, and large enterprises to find partners that can bring their digital product ideas to life or speed up their digitalization process.

The pandemic was never an obstacle to the emergence of new great ideas.

This year we kick-started over a dozen new projects, doing what we know best, being reliable tech partners to our clients, and building web and mobile apps from scratch.

Despite the growth, we continue to keep an almost equal balance between the size of clients we work with (startup, SME, Large Enterprise), consolidating our expertise in industries like Banking, Telemedicine, Energy, GreenTech, or PropTech.

 

RebelVentures — because we can’t keep our hands off cool startups.

At RebelDot, we build digital products for startups and brands all over the world. Most of the time, we take them from the idea stage and take them through the entire development process, through design, ideation, MVP creation, and a full product launch.

The thrill of joining forces to solve problems with the help of technology it’s probably what has kept us in the business for over 13 years. And sometimes, listening to your own heart does only good.

Hence, we’ve decided to launch RebelVentures with the aim of investing in the startups that catch our eye. So far, we’ve invested in several startups around Europe, and we have one major investment in a Romanian startup (to be announced soon).

From the office to working from home, and then to hybrid.

Moving our headquarters from a corporate building into an actual house grew our sense of community and closeness.

We’ve turned the office into a social area where bonds are tightened, where we meet to take the edge off a challenging project and chat about anything, from holiday plans to weekly wins or struggles, or just exchanging cat pictures”.

The last few days, the office has been at full capacity and if last year I was thinking about remote work is becoming a norm, I now find that people actually prefer mixing the two for both productivity and other holistic reasons. This is why we’re currently looking for our new, larger playground.

RebelDot playground

Found genuine ways to give to the community around us.

Having a not so intentional, but rather impulsive way to give back allowed us to find along the way many causes that could benefit from our fast, call it Agile approach to finding solutions.

We went from formal NGO donations to speaking at student events, supporting monthly hackathons, and integrating little habits like only sourcing locally for each of the present bundles we occasionally offer our people.

RebelDot CSR

We’ve also built a pro bono app for CERT Transilvania, an app meant to support the local rescue teams.

Since we love supporting rebels in their passions and side hustles, this year we decided to help to organize the beach volley tournament Valentin, one of our React Developers, is involved in.

Beach Volley jersey

Visidot, our internal startup has become part of a short few selected in the Wise Guys accelerator.

Visidot, our very own startup, the digital paper log that we’ve built last year continued to reach new heights, having just got out of @WiseGuys’ pre-acceleration program in Estonia.

Backed up by some solid digital campaigns, Visidot started to gain traction on a both national and international level, landing some important clients in industries like tech, as well as real estate.

It is also fortunate timing since many other companies are considering this new hybrid scenario and getting back safely into the office.

We’ve used our voice to drive a digitalization action in Romania.

Posting on LinkedIn also turned out to be an impactful indirect means to give. The post I wrote a while back about the ridiculous level of bureaucracy in Romania and the need for a digital alternative was recently quoted by Romanian Deputy @Sabin Sarmas in his celebratory post, announcing a digitalization bill recently passed in the Government. Again, seems like little things like that, small daily impulses can, in fact, build that “better world”.

I am grateful to be here, now, and to have experienced yet another just-as-challenging year together with such driven and amazing people.

rebeldot digitalization

1538 applicants and 27 interns: our Spring and Summer Internships.

The spring and summer internships we have organized this year were probably one of our greatest joy bringers. Not only they gave us a chance at meeting new people, but it brought a new wave of fresh perspectives to our team.

I want to congratulate all the students who became Rebel Interns as we were extremely selective — only 1.7% of the applicants were accepted

Today, we are actively growing our .Net, as well as React Native and Blockchain development teams, making RebelDot a community that is fueled by learning and innovation.

RebelDot tshirt

The future will be Rebel! 🚀

I wrote this with a heart full of gratitude for the people that make RebelDot a company in which we thrive by being authentic day by day.

If last year you would have asked me where I think RebelDot will be on its 3rd anniversary, my guess would have been a lot different than the reality we are experiencing today.

We have a lot of work do to in the next year, and although I am not able to fully envision where we are all going to be 365 days from now, all I can say is that we are looking at a REBEL future.