| 5 min read
At Third Republic we are always keen to stay abreast of the latest trend, changes, technologies and much more within the MuleSoft space.
And, when we sat down to consider just how we could do so, it was clear that the best approach was to go straight to the source of the information. With that being said, we were lucky enough to sit down with Senior MuleSoft Developer, Jamie Pendle, from Siemens, to discuss his MuleSoft Journey so far.
With experience in the permanent world of MuleSoft, Jamie was able to give us unique insight into what it is like to be a candidate in today’s MuleSoft ecosystem, and how businesses can go about attracting much need MuleSoft talent.
Third Republic: Can you give us an overview of your background? How did you get into the MuleSoft ecosystem?
Jamie Pendle: Prior to working with Mule, I was primarily a Java developer. However, one of my previous companies chose MuleSoft as their integration technology of choice, and I had the opportunity to start learning it, around the time Mule 3.5. Soon after I worked on my first project on a client site. Within about 6 months I had moved to a full-time MuleSoft developer role, and that is what I have been doing since!
TR: How have you seen the ecosystem change during this time?
JP: You can tell, for example, from visiting the MuleSoft Summit's that the number of people and customers interested in, and actively using Mule, has dramatically increased during this time. Although it still seems to be a niche skill set, 4 years ago it was even more so, and there definitely seems to be an upward trend in adoption of the technology and the platform.
In terms of the actual offering, this has also changed dramatically. When I first started using Mule it was still very much sold as an "integration platform" or an "ESB", rather than the API focused product it has become. We've obviously also seen the move to Mule 4 in this time which represented a significant change in the actual technology.
TR: So, what main trends are you seeing in the ecosystem?
JP: Everyone seems to have a "cloud first" policy these days. Again, when I first started using Mule there seemed to be a fairly even split between CloudHub versus on-premise, but everyone I have spoken to works for a company looking to move to the cloud. CloudHub these days has become a mature product, and recent product announcements like Runtime Fabric are all geared towards helping customers realise a cloud first policy.
TR: With that in mind, how do you think MuleSoft will continue to advance their technological capabilities in light of the drive for digital transformation?
JP: I think they'll continue to invest in what they are offering, meaning we will see plenty of new product announcements. Every time you go to one of their Summit's they have something new to announce. For example, I liked what I saw of the Anypoint Monitoring feature they announced last year, and it will be interesting to see how they continue to advance their offering as technology continues to evolve, and also as business needs change and adapt.
TR: What advice would you give to others trying to get into the industry?
JP: There's a number of free self-study training course available online; I think this is as good a starting point as any, and I took advantage of this myself as my own introduction to Mule 4. Also, don’t underestimate the importance of a strong knowledge of Java. Although this is probably less relevant with Mule 4 than previously, I still think it's useful to have this as a core skill though.
TR: What benefits do you think there are to being a permanent professional in this ecosystem?
JP: I think it fundamentally gives you the opportunity to really see things through, and to play an important role in a company's digital transformation. MuleSoft has the potential to really transform how an organisation is operating, so to be able to be hands-on in that change from the start, and to see the longer term benefits, for example, of an API led connectivity approach, is incredibly rewarding for me.
TR: With that being said, what are the pros and cons of permanent employment?
JP: Having never worked as a contractor myself, I wouldn’t want to say what the perks or downfalls of that are, but when it comes to permanent employment, the obvious benefits are naturally things like job security. Everyone is different, but as already mentioned I personally like the opportunity to really feel invested in what a company is doing, whether that is a digital transformation or something else, and I think you get that more being permanent.
TR: Finally, do you think we will see a rise in the demand for permanent employment?
JP: I'd imagine that, with the Government's tax reforms, there will be a small increase in people wanting to move from contract to permanent and, as such, the demand will likely reflect this. More generally though, as I said before the adoption of MuleSoft seems to be on an upward trend, so I imagine they'll be a rise in demand for all sorts of people with MuleSoft skills!
So, there you have it… and seems fairly conclusive that, regardless of if you’re a perm or contract employee, MuleSoft is on an upward trend and it’s an incredibly exciting space to be involved in or to get in to today.
Having spoken to a number of permanent MuleSoft professionals over the last few months, we would most definitely agree with Jamie that self-learning, training and certifications are a must if you’re looking to expand your skillset - but there is nothing like hands on project experience to really get to grips with the product!
The numbers of customers adopting MuleSoft has increased dramatically and the demand for skills is growing all the time. So, as more people enter the space the challenge will be around identifying the quality Muley’s from the donkey imposters! 😉