• CircleCI mentors with Maven Youth


    This past week, some folks from the CircleCI team were honored to partner with Maven Youth, a Bay Area nonprofit focused on supporting LGBTQ+ youth interested in tech, for a morning of fun and skill-sharing as part of their Maven Youth Camp. We chose to partner with Maven Youth because of the strides the organization is making for the queer youth in tech, as well as our desire to do impactful work in the larger community as we build our own internal LGBTQ+ employee resource group (ERG) here at CircleCI.

    Continue reading “CircleCI mentors with Maven Youth”

  • 10 Ways to Get Ahead for Black and Latinx Talent


    Last week, we partnered with Code2040 to host their first PopUp event here at CircleCI HQ. The PopUp series is designed to engage the broader community, in particular rising Black and Latinx tech professionals. We were delighted to host the Code2040 team, an incredible panel of guest speakers (including our very own Jose Browne!) and an audience of 75 attendees.

    Continue reading “10 Ways to Get Ahead for Black and Latinx Talent”

  • How We Interview Engineers at CircleCI

    Since the beginning of 2018, we have had over a thousand candidates pass through the engineering hiring process. Our engineering interview consists of four stages following an initial screen. We broke down the percentages of candidates that pass through each stage of our hiring process, and it looks like this.

    Out of any group of 1000 applicants:

    250 will pass the initial screen.
    117 will pass the hiring manager phone screen.
    44 will pass the micro-skills assessment portion of the interview.
    7 will pass the macro-skills assessment.
    Fewer than 3 will pass the on-site interview and receive offers.

    Following our Series C, we’ve ramped up our hiring further, building on what we’ve learned so far. We’ve been talking a lot internally lately about how we interview, and thought folks might be interested in what our interview process looks like for engineering roles, and why.

    Continue reading “How We Interview Engineers at CircleCI”

  • Your Gender Ratio Won't Change Overnight. Start With Inclusion, Respect, and Opportunities.


    It’s no secret that there is a gender imbalance in software engineering. While this is true at CircleCI, and something we are working on improving, it’s not something I had really registered until I recently saw our largest conference room full of our senior engineers for an onsite architecture summit. It was, with only one exception, a sea of men.

    I was surprised — enough to feel hurt. And I was surprised by my own surprise. I know the numbers. Reflecting on my own reaction, I realized the imbalance had never sunk in because of the way my teammates treat me; like each other: with respect, kindness, support, and (occasionally) eyeroll-laden mockery. Everyone is included.

    There are myriad small gestures and greater pains many of my peers have taken to make me and others feel welcomed, supported, and included. According to HBR, inclusion means “creating an atmosphere in which all people feel valued and respected and have access to the same opportunities.” Inclusion is a vital precursor to diversity because it creates an environment where people from diverse backgrounds can thrive. The counter to death by a thousand cuts is growth by a thousand kindnesses.

    Continue reading “Your Gender Ratio Won't Change Overnight. Start With Inclusion, Respect, and Opportunities.”

  • Don't Let Code Freeze Leave You Out in the Cold

    7 Things to Do Instead of Deploying


    Around this time of year, many companies institute a “code freeze” that puts a stop to new deploys for a certain period of time (often to wait out the holiday retail rush, or until teams are back in full force in the office post-vacation).

    While new features may not be going out to customers during this time, that doesn’t mean that meaningful work isn’t happening on engineering teams. This is a time that is full of planning, roadmapping, and setting teams up for success in the coming year. It can also be a fruitful time for personal or team-wide experimentation, goal-setting, and fine-tuning of existing systems (for example, migrating from CircleCI 1.0 to 2.0)

    Continue reading “Don't Let Code Freeze Leave You Out in the Cold”

  • Onboarding onto a Distributed Team: Reach Out and Ask Someone


    I started at CircleCI HQ in San Francisco as a Solutions Engineer this past August. With a job history of working at much larger companies such as eBay and PayPal, being at a start-up was a big change for me.

    And so I found myself grappling with a new problem: how to onboard. I was more accustomed to super structured week-long (or even longer) onboarding formats, which I had found to be dry and data-heavy.

    At CircleCI, the culture is very remote friendly. My manager Kevin lives in Seattle and works remotely from there. I have co-workers on my team based out of New York and Colorado. For my first week, Kevin traveled down to the San Francisco office to welcome me and to kick off the onboarding process. It was really helpful to have some 1:1 training time and to get some suggestions on what areas to continue focusing my time on. Solutions Engineers lead the technical implementation and day-to-day management of CircleCI Trials, ensuring early customer success and a long-term business relationship. New hires in this role often start with a week on support duty to help learn the product.

    After the newness and excitement of my first week, I felt a little unsure of the best way to soak up more CircleCI tribal know-how. There were plenty of people who could answer any technical questions I might have, but during those beginning days and weeks I didn’t always know quite what (or whom) to ask.

    Continue reading “Onboarding onto a Distributed Team: Reach Out and Ask Someone”

  • How Code for America Hacks Perfectionism to Ship Value Every Day


    We’ve recently been exploring signals around engineering productivity in order to share metrics teams can look at to know if they are on the right track (the results of our research here). We were surprised and deighted when our research revealed that Code For America was leading the pack in measures of engineering velocity. We spoke to two members of their team, John O’Duinn and Ben Sheldon, to learn more about how a non-profit focused on delivering services for the public sector is able to maintain incredible speed and engineering productivity.

    Continue reading “How Code for America Hacks Perfectionism to Ship Value Every Day”

  • Dev Horror Stories, Part II

    Last year for Halloween, we put the call out for tales from the developer crypts that have kept haunting you, lo these many years.

    We had so much fun we decided to do it again, and the timing proved eerie…


    Continue reading “Dev Horror Stories, Part II”

  • A Letter to Future CircleCI Employees

    What follows is a letter to potential CircleCI employees, from our Head of Human Resources, David Mann.


    Dear CircleCI Candidates,

    I wanted to share our philosophy and standards around the hiring process to give you more clarity about what you should expect from us, and what we’ll look for from you.

    Overall, know this: we respect you. And we’re honored you’re interested in joining our team.

    To make the interview flow go smoothly, we have some standards we live by. We’re not perfect, but we do our best to make the getting-to-know-each-other process as enjoyable as possible. And as you consider joining our team, I want to share with you the thinking behind our methodology.

    Continue reading “A Letter to Future CircleCI Employees”

  • How We Uphold Our Inclusive Values as a Global Team

    The Perks of Going Distributed

    Since our early days, CircleCI has purposely embraced building a global workforce. This simple choice has given us many advantages. First, we have access to the best talent on Planet Earth. The great variety of viewpoints we have access to helps us make better decisions. Equally important: it allows us to continuously deliver value to our customers 24 hours a day. Having team members all over the world brings many advantages for us as a company.

    What’s even more valuable, though, is knowing that the flexibility to work remotely confers some pretty great benefits on our global employees as well.

    Continue reading “How We Uphold Our Inclusive Values as a Global Team”

  • Building and Sustaining a Remote-Inclusive Work Culture

    The Perks of Going Remote

    Since the very beginning, CircleCI has embraced having a distributed workforce. Not only has this choice given us access to the best talent on Planet Earth, we’ve also benefited from access to a huge variety of viewpoints and the ability to support our global customers around the clock.

    Having team members all over the globe brings many advantages for us as a company. What’s even more valuable, though, is knowing that the flexibility to work remotely confers some pretty great benefits on our global employees as well. We asked them what they liked about working remotely, and here are some of their favorite perks:

    -The perfect office. You get to choose (or construct) your ideal work environment: whether that means more quiet and fewer social distractions, or the sound of songbirds outside your open window and the gentle hum of your dog snoring peacefully at your feet.
    -No time wasted. You can trade long commutes on crowded trains for more free time spent with friends, family, or favorite hobbies.
    -Unlimited flexibility. Reduce the stress of balancing family and work obligations by time-shifting your schedule as needed.

    How We Do It

    CircleCI the company is comprised of 111 people, and of those 36 are remote– a third of the company! We’ve been a distributed team from the start; operating asynchronously is built into our DNA. Because of this history, so many of the practices that we have around location-agnostic collaboration have been with us as long as we’ve been a company. We’ve worked hard to ensure that as we’ve grown we’ve scaled our ability to be an inclusive workplace for all, regardless of work location.

    “This is my 2nd remote job and the two biggest differences CircleCI makes to me is the trust we’re given and how much everyone legitimately cares. The ability to work remotely is one thing, but CircleCI gives me the chance to thrive remotely. Truly kickass.” -Ryan O’Hara, Senior Customer Success Engineer, Colorado

    How have we done this? From the start we’ve embraced practices of communication that ensure that one doesn’t have to be on-site to be in the loop. This filters down into everything from investing in solid A/V to the way we plan out and execute our tasks as a team.

    Invest in Systems that Support

    Here are some of the things that have worked for us in supporting a distributed workforce:

    -Create a culture of trust. “It’s not specific to remote work, but healthy remote work is impossible if there isn’t a broad understanding that everyone is trusted to do their job. If there’s even the slightest belief that remote workers are not working as hard as the folks in the offices then effective remote work becomes extremely difficult.” -Conor McDermottroe, Developer, Dublin
    -Encourage equal opportunity. “I never heard reasoning in decision making such as ‘[this person] cannot work on this because they are remote’ from anyone in CircleCI. Also, I think we make efforts to share information and decisions in the Internet (e.g. Slack or Google Docs) so that everybody can see it whether you are local or remote. -Hirokuni Kim, Developer, Tokyo
    -Embrace multi-media. “It is much easier to be engaged in video conference than when it is just voice calls. I couldn’t do this job remotely without video conferencing.” -Jonathan Morris, Director of Sales, Los Angeles
    -Get together. Hold regular in-person all-hands meetings, as we’ve been doing since the days when we could all fit around one restaurant table. “All-hands have been great opportunities to meet other coworkers and to feel as though we share a purpose.” -Nate Smith, Developer, Toronto

    Tips from our Team

    Those are some of the things we do to keep our distributed organization running more or less smoothly. But being a remote team member is not without its challenges. How have our remote team members learned to make working-from-elsewhere work for them?

    “Develop a strong daily routine. With no commute to worry about, I take a couple hours for meditation and yoga every morning, which helps me settle into my workday.” -Rose Kaplan-Bomberg, Success Engineer, NYC

    “I highly recommend coming in to the office from time to time, to interact with so many of the other employees, and support those relationships.” -Jonathan Morris, Director of Sales, Los Angeles

    “If it’s your first remote gig, expect to feel ‘off balance’ and unproductive for a couple months. It’s very easy to let your work/life balance skew in either direction: not enough work or too much work. My personal lifehack to avoid working too late is to have a wife who gets home at 6:30 and is annoyed if I make her wait too long for dinner. This may not work for everyone but it’s effective when possible.” -David Goeke, Developer, Sonoma County, CA

    Continue reading “Building and Sustaining a Remote-Inclusive Work Culture”

  • Every Voice Counts: My Time as a CircleCI Intern

    This post is written by Jacque Garcia, who was a summer 2017 Engineering intern at CircleCI.

    Hello CS

    As a kid from Compton, CA who had never even heard of “coding,” if someone would have told me 4 years ago I would be majoring in Computer Science I would have given them my eyes of suspicion.

    I am originally from Compton, California (yes, “Straight Outta” Compton, and no, I have not seen the movie) and I am currently pursuing my Bachelor’s degree at UC Berkeley. I went undeclared my Freshman year after realizing that my major at the time, Chemical Engineering, wasn’t (and wouldn’t) make me happy. Something was missing.

    Continue reading “Every Voice Counts: My Time as a CircleCI Intern”

  • Interviewing as an Outsider: How I Finally Got Seen in Tech

    Gaining access into the world of tech hasn’t been the easiest thing for me. I grew up in East Baltimore; I know how unfair the system is. People talk a lot about diversity in tech. Seems to me they think of diversity as what can be seen on the surface, but I believe it’s much deeper than that. For example, most of the other African American people I know in tech came from homes that had both parents and went to really good schools; I grew up with a single mother and went to community college. I dropped out once I finished all my core CS classes so I could start working. People in the Valley get admired when they drop out of elite schools, but if you’re not dropping out of Stanford, you don’t get congratulated. It’s all dependent on your demographic situation.


    Continue reading “Interviewing as an Outsider: How I Finally Got Seen in Tech”

  • How to Sell Your Team on CI/CD

    A Step-by-Step Guide to Updating Legacy Processes in Your Org

    Changing the way teams work is hard. Just think how hard it is to change just yourself. Then sprinkle in the difficulty of getting a group of people using various applications moving in the same direction.

    We’ve talked to a lot of teams, and we’ve heard many variations on the same theme in terms of obstacles they foresee in implementing continuous integration:

    “My company is a 20 year old company with established processes. Bringing in Continuous Integration would be a huge change to our culture, there are security implications, and it requires a major retooling. I’m going to have to sell this to my boss.”

    So, where do you start when embarking on selling a new idea to your boss, to your team, and to everyone else you need to convince to invest?

    Continue reading “How to Sell Your Team on CI/CD”

  • How to Get Hired at CircleCI

    After a bracing conversation with Alek Sharma, our developer advocate, I decided to write an equally bracing call-to-arms describing our hiring process.

    So, you’re a software engineer. You’re adept at creating value from abstract concepts, weaving functions together in the loom of your mind. You know that Real Problems™ involve Real Work™ – a potent blend of success and failure, mixed thoroughly and served with a little umbrella.

    Continue reading “How to Get Hired at CircleCI”

  • Waiting for Good Code

    waiting for good code Image Source


    ACT I
    An open office. A circular dependency.

    Estragon, sitting on a low ball, is trying to reboot his computer. He pushes the power button with both hands, panting. He gives up, exhausted, rests, tries again. As before.

    Enter Vladimir.

    (giving up again)
    Nothing to be done.

    I’m beginning to come round to that opinion. All my life I’ve tried to debug it, saying Vladimir, be reasonable, you haven’t yet tried everything. And I resumed the struggle.

    (He broods, musing on the struggle. Turning to Estragon.)

    So there you are again.

    Continue reading “Waiting for Good Code”

  • A Strongly Worded Email Convincing Your Boss You Need CI/CD

    Think back to your last one-on-one with your manager.

    Did you go for a stroll about town? Did you get coffee? Do you get coffee every single time you have a one-on-one? I hope not, that’s a lot of coffee. It probably made you jittery, didn’t it? Made it hard for you to form words that make sense.

    You had a perfect argument for a new tool or process, but it died young on your tongue because of the toxic levels of caffeine coursing through your veins. Yes, sometimes words can be hard. And soft, too. Actually, words come in a variety of textures, and that is the beauty of language.

    Continue reading “A Strongly Worded Email Convincing Your Boss You Need CI/CD”

  • Live a Richer Life with Your Dream Color Scheme

    Software engineers come into this world as blank slates–empty vessels to be filled with facts, yes, but mainly opinions. Opinions are the carbohydrates of programming: they have little nutritional value but occupy space, leaving you with a remarkable feeling of (false) satiety.

    Continue reading “Live a Richer Life with Your Dream Color Scheme”

  • Thoughts on International Women's Day

    CircleCI has hired from many different talent pools, and is delighted to have smart and creative female, female-identified, and non-binary people on its staff. For this year’s International Women’s Day, I asked if any of them would like to share their thoughts about working in tech. And luckily, a few of them were willing to do so, as you can read below. (And p.s.: we’re hiring)

    Continue reading “Thoughts on International Women's Day”

  • Happy Valentine's Day from CircleCI

    Happy Valentine's Day from CircleCI

    This year we wanted to express our love and appreciation for the devs + ops folks in our lives… in verse. Here are our favorites.

    Happy Valentine’s Day, wherever you’re deploying.

    To: Dev
    From: Dev

    Pair programming valentineTweet it

    Continue reading “Happy Valentine's Day from CircleCI”

  • DevOps Ranks as Top Profession in US

    A new survey released by Glassdoor showed that “DevOps Engineer” was one of the top “Best Jobs in America”, second only to “Data Scientist”. The annual ranking is based on salary, job openings, and an overall job satisfaction rating.

    Continue reading “DevOps Ranks as Top Profession in US”

  • Most-Read CircleCI Posts of 2016


    2016 was a big year for CircleCI. We had an $18 million Series B round, and released the closed beta of our 2.0 product. Along the way, we saw some great content. Here are the 5 blog posts that got the most views in 2016.

    Continue reading “Most-Read CircleCI Posts of 2016”

  • Continuous Delivery: A Christmas Tale


    ’Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the startup
    were grim engineers who had taken old BART up
    to put out a fire that users had found;
    they hacked and they Slacked but did not make a sound.

    Continue reading “Continuous Delivery: A Christmas Tale”

  • Why We Still Do In-Person All-Hands

    80+ people. 7 countries. 16 cities. 37 pieces of luggage. We recently brought every member of the worldwide CircleCI team to our San Francisco headquarters for a full week.

    2016-12-19-why-in-person-all-hands-teampic.jpg Nearly all of our team

    Despite the logistical briar patch that arranging a company-wide all-hands can be for a business of our size, the cultural, social, and company benefits of all of of us being in the same place at the same time is invaluable, and well worth a couple of bramble snags.

    Continue reading “Why We Still Do In-Person All-Hands”

  • 'Hour of Code' Kids Try Pair Programming in San Francisco

    12 06 HOC blog.png

    CircleCI Engineer Tad Whitaker knew he would teach kids about software principles when he volunteered to participate in an international program called Hour of Code. But as he helped students at San Francisco’s Argonne Elementary School for two days this week, he had a surprise: a rise in productivity and engagement when a technical problem forced the students to pair program.

    Continue reading “'Hour of Code' Kids Try Pair Programming in San Francisco”

  • To Be Continuous: Episodes 23, 24, 25, & 26!


    Last year CircleCI Founder Paul Biggar joined forces with the Edith Harbaugh, CEO of LaunchDarkly, to create To Be Continuous, a show about continuous delivery and software development. Catch up with episodes 23, 24, 25, and 26 below, and follow the playlist on Soundcloud to be notified of new ones.

    Continue reading “To Be Continuous: Episodes 23, 24, 25, & 26!”

  • Continuous (Dis)integration

    Killing Your Build Servers For Fun And Profit, But Mostly Profit


    There’s an infamous quote that circulates among writers: “Kill your darlings.” How violent and succinct! And, as it turns out, quite applicable to software delivery.

    Continue reading “Continuous (Dis)integration”

  • Dev Horror Stories

    Dev horror stories. We all have them. For Halloween, we’ve collected a handful of tales that still haunt our team and others on Twitter. We tried to keep them short, but like Python 3 adoption, they sometimes took longer than originally anticipated. Enjoy.

    1031-DevHorror_Blogger B.png

    Continue reading “Dev Horror Stories”

  • Meet the Team: Jenneviere Villegas

    This is part of our ‘meet the team’ blog series where we get to know the faces behind CircleCI. In this post Jenneviere sits down to tell us a bit about herself, how she joined CircleCI, and what fuels her passion.

    Jenneviere Villegas

    Continue reading “Meet the Team: Jenneviere Villegas”

  • Meet the interns: Andres Cuervo


    Andres joins the team at CircleCI as an Summer 2016 intern. Andres sat down with us to tell us a bit about himself, how he found himself at CircleCI, and where his adventures will take him next.

    Continue reading “Meet the interns: Andres Cuervo ”

  • To Be Continuous: Three New Episodes

    Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 10.56.32 AM

    Last year, CircleCI Founder, Paul Biggar, joined forces with the Edith Harbaugh, CEO of LaunchDarkly to create To Be Continuous, a show about Continuous Delivery and software development. Catch up with episodes 10, 11, and 12 below, and follow the playlist on Soundcloud to be notified of new ones.

    Continue reading “To Be Continuous: Three New Episodes”

  • Kindness is Underrated

    The fact is, people need to know what my position on things are. And I can't just say "please don't do that", because people won't listen. I say "On the internet, nobody can hear you being subtle", and I mean it. And I definitely am not willing to string people along, either. I've had that happen too - not telling people clearly enough that I don't like their approach, they go on to re-architect something, and get really upset when I am then not willing to take their work.

    Continue reading “Kindness is Underrated”

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