Testimonial: Wessel Verheij


About Wessel

Position at Takeaway: Software Developer & Vice-Chairman of the (Dutch) Works Council

Location: Enschede

When did you join the company? October 2017

In the picture: Me (left) together with friend and colleague Michel Kok at Intents Festival 2019

What does your job involve?

Since starting here, I’ve been responsible for the consumer-facing websites, as part of the Consumer Web team. As part of this team, my responsibilities range from development work to deploying new releases, and even a little bit of DevOps.

I wanted to broaden my experience and take on new challenges, so I moved into the Back Office Platform team at the start of 2020. In this team, we’re responsible for moving our internal management system to a Domain-Driven Design (DDD) approach, which has been a great experience.

What characteristics do you need for this role?

Personally, I think it comes down to three key traits: teamwork, communication and knowledge sharing.

The main reason for this is that we are tasked with splitting up a huge application which has been here since the company was founded. There is so much functionality integrated within the application, that it’s almost impossible for one person to know how everything works.

Moving to a DDD means we work together to identify domains, plan our steps carefully and share the information we find. With multiple teams working on the application, it’s important that our findings and knowledge are spread across the department - and vice-versa.

Without the knowledge we’ve gained from other teams, our work would have been much more difficult.

What do you like about working at Takeaway.com?

Before coming here, I’d always worked for small companies. I liked that because of working with a close-knit group of people. When I was offered this position at Takeaway.com, I decided to try somewhere different, because how often do you get the chance to join a company known by millions around the globe?

From day one, I received the same feeling here that I had within those small companies. In this ever-growing department, people were (and still are) close and friendly. Managers weren’t miles away or hard to reach, but together with the team, making jokes, lifting up spirits, but also being professional, “perfectly balanced, as all things should be”. This also translated into my role, where I was able to grow as a person and as a developer. 

What are your KPIs?

As a team, our goal is very clear. We’re moving the application to a DDD - which is easily measurable. Each part we split up will improve development speed and keep developers happy. Almost all developers prefer to work in (and write) good code.

When they’re happy with what they work in and the teams dealing with the application are able to quickly ship new features, we’ve done our job well!

Which tools do you use?

When it comes down to tools I use to perform my work, it’s mostly PHPStorm, Postman, iTerm and Sublime Text. I love to use PHPStorm for the “heavy work”, but Sublime Text is a great text editor for small adjustments to files.

As for the tech stack, it depends on which team you’re in. In my current team, we use Laravel and Vue for most of it, with a few supporting packages. It’s also a case of trying to find the right fit for the type of project we’re working on.

And of course, I can’t forget Git(Lab), Jira and Slack for collaboration and project management!

What would you tell someone who is considering joining us?

If you’re up for a challenge and love working with a bunch of unique individuals from all over the world, go for it!

I wouldn’t have expected to end up at Takeaway.com so shortly after my graduation due to the size of the company, and I was a bit overwhelmed by the prospect. But if there’s one thing I found out, it’s that there was nothing to worry about!

What are your personal goals for the future?

Being a software developer has always felt like a hobby which I get a lot of joy from, but working here showed me how important communication is in any company. Especially so within a multinational business like this, where our colleagues are spread across the world.

My vision for the future at Takeaway.com is to move towards a place of more personal interaction and general knowledge. I’m very happy that this is something I can already put in practice within the Works Council. Humans are great, and together we can achieve great things!

The first thing you do when you arrive at the office is...

I’m far from being a morning person, so the first thing I often do is the daily standup. But, (almost) always right on time! After that, I think the answer that goes for most people, get coffee.

Your favourite spot at the office is...

My favourite spot is actually outside of the office. When you’re stuck on a hard to solve bug or feature, getting some fresh air is one of the best things. There is an exception on Fridays when we have the “VrijMiBo” - or afternoon drinks. Then I’d choose the “living room corner” on our floor.

What can we find at your desk?

The weirdest thing on there is probably my tiny Christmas tree. It’s been there since the first Christmas I had working here. I’ve never removed it since then. It’s been there now for over 2 years, and it survived over 5 desk relocations. For me, it’s a little bit of Christmas every day of the year!

Besides the tree, I’m a messy person, so my desk is full of documents, photos of me with colleagues on office parties, books and lots of stickers. I never put them on anything, I just collect them on my desk.

What do you usually order for lunch? 

I think the thing I order the most is an ‘American Filet’ sandwich, with a little bit of pepper and sliced onions. It never gets old. And of course, sometimes a pizza, when the temptation is too much!

Tell us about your hobbies outside of work...

I go to Festivals as often as possible, especially during summertime. One of my favourites, which we go to every year, is Intents Festival - one of the biggest Dutch dance-festivals, with a focus on the harder styles of dance.

Sadly that hobby isn’t something I can do every day, but gaming on my PlayStation 4 is one that I can. My favourite games include Call of Duty (mainly the old and new Modern Warfare series), Assassin’s Creed and the BioShock series.

An interesting fact we didn’t know about you? 

I started working at Takeaway.com when I was 20. For a long time I was the youngest person employed full-time within our IT departments worldwide!

Anything else you’d like to add? 

Never let anything, especially fear, insecurities or anxiety, stop you from doing something you want to do. If I had done that, I would have never ended up at Takeaway.com and experienced all the great things I have here. We have a saying in Dutch that fits perfectly here, “If you never shoot, you’ll always miss.”