Joining Farfetch — A guide for candidates moving between countries
By Frederico Moreira, Principal QA.
This post was originally published on our F-Tech Blog. Come check it out here :-)
The Recruitment Process
I will start by telling you about my journey with Farfetch, since our first contact back in September 2016. Yeah, that date exactly! That was our first contact, as much as I have only started working in this inspiring and challenging venture in August 2018, my history with Farfetch started in 2016.
In August 2016 I received an invitation via Linkedin to be part of the recruitment process for the role of Test Automation Engineer at Farfetch. At the time, I didn’t have much time and had just moved to another city in Brazil for a new challenge. However, I had always wanted to have an experience in an international company and, because of that, I have accepted the recruiter’s invitation to take part in the hiring process. I went through a couple of technical and non-technical interviews, I got approved and ended up receiving an offer, which I promptly accepted.
I wasn’t able to migrate to Portugal and work at Farfetch at that stage. However, this story didn’t end there. After almost two years, the same recruiter contacted me again and, to my astonishment, her very first question was related to the situation that prevented me from coming to Farfetch in 2016 — my father had just been diagnosed with a serious illness that made me decide to stay with him. For me, this simple question had a huge impact, as it showed that the recruiter and the company remembered me and my situation, but, more than that, it was also a great example about how everyone in Farfetch lives our value #BeHuman.
My personal experience in the hiring process was quite interesting; it was demanding and challenging, not only regarding hard skills but also soft skills. At the end of the day, what really caught my attention was the purpose of this new role, very different from some of my previous experiences, since it involved a larger scope of action and, most importantly, it required that I acquired knowledge besides testing. Now, I would be involved in architecture, design patterns, scalability, security and good practices overall in Software Development.
Mobility and Relocation
After celebrating for being approved and having accepted Farfetch’s offer, it was time for the more bureaucratic and complex part of this story. Now I had to gather a ton of documents to request my Visa in the Portuguese Consulate, in my case in São Paulo, Brazil.
At this point, I would like to make it clear for the reader that the bureaucracy is not only (or entirely) required by Farfetch, but most of these documents are demanded by the Consulates and the Embassies. I understand that there has to be paperwork but, to be completely honest, sometimes there may be a few too many steps… Not everything is rosy when relocating to a new country and you are changing your life completely!
Farfetch has supported me throughout this whole process, from gathering documents to sharing information about the climate, cost of living, security, rent prices, etc. Believe me when I say this was a great way of managing expectations of the company and the city — receiving all details on my side made a great difference for me since I was about to move into a new city, country and culture that I didn’t know.
Without a doubt, this interaction with the Mobility team made my adaptation and first few days in Portugal much easier and friendlier. As satisfying as the relocation package was (Farfetch offers a few extra benefits to the candidates relocating to Portugal), these actions and the team’s availability were outstanding and made all the difference in my decision of migrating into a whole new country.
A few months passed until I could actually move to Porto, not only because of the Visa requirements but also because I needed to give the notice to my previous company and prepare such a big change.
My first impression when I came to Porto was sensational. During the last few years, I was living and working in one of the most frenetic cities in the world, with a lengthy commute to and from work, a constant feel of insecurity and a very competitive IT market. I knew I wanted to move into a more peaceful place, more like my hometown (Belo Horizonte).
And, here I was, this was my first time in Europe, and everything was new, from the confusion of catching a bus to ensuring that I ordered what I really wanted in a restaurant. The cultural differences caught my attention immediately, but in a good way! I’m aware that I don’t look like a local because I am a bit taller and I use dreadlocks, but I don’t get judged in my first interactions and people talk to me openly anywhere I go.
Even though the same language is spoken in Portugal and Brazil, one has no idea of how many different expressions exist between these countries! With that said, speaking the “same” language is clearly a great advantage when you want to adapt to a new place, but if you are not from Brazil or if you don’t speak Portuguese, fear nothing, dear reader! That is not a problem at all — to my great surprise, I have encountered hundreds of tourists in the city, but also tons of people speaking English in every corner.
Similarly to other big organisations, in my first days at Farfetch, I participated in induction sessions, which are a major help to learn how the company works, from the initial recruitment processes, up to a “live” order processing, passing through everything that happens in the backstage. This first week helps a lot and one is able to understand their role within the team, within Farfetch’s business, and overall how one can add value to the organisation.
Still, about Farfetch, I was amazed by the multiculturality! In some situations, you may even have contact with people from all around the world — and everyone is accessible, there are no communication barriers with anyone in any of our offices around the world. And, still for my great astonishment, I work in an office with more than 1000 open-minded people, valuing your intellectual contribution over the way you dress or look — and this was extremely motivating for me!
If I can finish this article with a tip — for me, crucial — for you to have an easy and smooth experience and adaptation to a new country, it would definitely be communication.
It doesn’t matter how much of an introvert you are — ask, research, talk to people, awake the proactivity that you may not usually have — this will be highly useful for you and will allow you the best possible experience. :)
One final tip: don’t forget to have fun.