SFCC Bootcampers Celebrate 1 Year Anniversary: Where Are They Now?

SFCC Bootcamp Graduates

This month celebrates the 1 Year Anniversary of our Salesforce Commerce Cloud (SFCC) Bootcamp! CQL, whose esteemed SFCC client list includes PetSmartWolverine Worldwide, e.l.f. Cosmetics, Paula’s Choice, Woodland DirectCosta Del Mar, Shoe Show, and Lighting New York, doubled its SFCC business in the last 2 years and invested $250K in 2022 to create and launch a training program in the highly-specialized technical craft of SFCC development.

Three bootcampers – Valerie R., Matt P, and Zion E., joined the SFCC Bootcamp Training Program 1 year ago, and today, we had the pleasure to interview them on their experience at CQL:

  1. Why did you join the CQL Bootcamp?
    • Zion – “I attended CodeMash in 2022 and visited CQL’s booth. I was a few months from graduating with a degree in computer science and looking for a job. While I had never considered Ecommerce development, I discussed the bootcamp with the CQL team and was really interested!”
    • Matt – “After graduating in December with a degree in computer science, I was looking for a job in the Ann Arbor area. I was looking for on-the-job training, since I was a junior development with little development experience. I found CQL’s Bootcamp on a job posting and liked that the opportunity was in Ecommerce.”
    • Valerie – “I was transitioning to a career in the tech industry, and while I had web development skills, I still had a lot to learn. I had just finished a web development bootcamp, and I was searching for on-the-job paid training when I came across CQL’s bootcamp on a search on LinkedIn.”
  2. What was your favorite part about Bootcamp?
    • Matt – “I enjoyed the closeness of the 4 of us (Valerie, Matt, Zion, and Chris – our instructor). Chris would lecture for a half day, and we would work on project work for a half day. It was a great opportunity to ask questions without feeling embarrassed or getting ridiculed. Even after a year, Chris meets with us on Thursdays for a bootcamp standup to keep in touch and check on each of us.”
    • Zion – “Chris did a great job with being personable and creating a learning environment where we weren’t afraid to ask questions. It was also easy to stay motivated to know that the work from Bootcamp was a full-time, paid job and that our SFCC skills would be immediately put to good use on a client team.”
    • Valerie – “The bootcamp was very hands-on. There were around 20 products that Chris designed for us to look into the code and Business Manager to get industry level practice for the SFCC exam. It allowed us to get used to working on SFCC code during training.”
  3. Did you feel the Bootcamp prepared you for the SFCC Certification exam?
    • “Working together, asking questions, going through projects, listening to Chris’ lectures, and using SFCC’s trailhead modules,” was unanimous among the 3 bootcampers. All 3 passed their SFCC certification on the first try! Valerie started the bootcamp in May and took the SFCC exam in June; Matt & Zion took the exam 3 months into Bootcamp.
  4. How long after Bootcamp did you start client work and how did you begin?
    • All three team members started client work at the end of June, early July when their certification was complete.
    • Matt & Zion – “Client work was assigned right after passing exams. Our first few projects were mini projects, typical of what you would get in a ticket for a support client.”
    • Valerie – “I started client work right after I completed the exam. During bootcamp, I was able to develop on the SFRA template site and mini projects. The bootcamp projects Chris prepared were so realistic, it prepared me well for transitioning to client work. It was great to edit code just like editing a client site.”
  5. What are you working on now at CQL?
    • Valerie – “I started doing support for a major shoe brand, integrations with an apparel brand, and new development work for a large pet retailer. When I initially started my first client projects, our project managers were very supportive and ensured the stories I worked on were small so that I could gain familiarity with the client and code base. We worked on pair programming, sharing screens, and talking through the code. Everyone was really supportive and helpful!”
    • Zion – “I started working on a shoe brand’s ADA updates, then moved to a home decor site build on SFCC. I also worked on a consumer electronics brand launch. I had a very similar experience to Valerie, and enjoyed pair programming, sharing screens, and the support provided by team members such as Louis, Lydia, and Mike E.”
    • Matt – “I started on the same shoe brand as Zion. The team was really understanding to being new – to both SFCC and ADA. The team walked me through why ADA was important, and it was a great learning experience. I was later brought onto a consumer electronics brand launch to build an azure dev ops pipeline, which was put into development operations. I was able to ask a lot of question, learn a lot, and get exposure to new projects.”
  6. Any other thoughts regarding your experience?
    • Zion – “If CQL decides to do another bootcamp, Chris should definitely teach it! The open dialog that Chris provided, and continues to, gave so much more to the experience!”
    • Valerie – “The experience was even better than I imagined! The projects we are doing are really neat and bring value to our clients. It’s rewarding to see when different bugs are fixed or new features work, and it’s easy to see the value.”
    • Matt – “The idea of learning eCommerce and SFCC was really nerve-wracking, but CQL helped to make it a smooth transition. Ecommerce isn’t as scary as I thought.” 😉

A huge congratulations to Matt, Valerie, and Zion for a very successful and rewarding first year at CQL! We are excited to have you on our team, appreciate the value you bring to our clients, and look forward to the great opportunities ahead!