Jason Farnan on What Tandem is Looking For in Software

Dec 21, 2016

At Tandem, Jason is the User Experience Design Manager and is the lead designer of our flagship product, the t:slim G4™ Insulin Pump. Working with Tandem for over 7 years, his role involves designing workflow diagrams and interactive prototypes, as well as exploring regulatory requirements and patient needs for a wide user demographic. He's looking to grow his team.

Tandem has been named a “Best Place to Work”, what do you think makes Tandem a great place for Software Engineers to work?
First and foremost, it’s the people and the environment. Tandem is full of fun and intelligent people that make work fun and enjoyable. It’s also very rewarding to work for a company that is consistently ranked #1 in customer satisfaction. We take pride in our medical innovations and I love seeing the positive comments and excitement for our company on social media. You can tell we make a difference in the diabetes community and there’s a lot of merit in that.

Describe the Software hiring process at Tandem.
I think our hiring process is unique in that you get to meet a lot of the team and answer fun and challenging questions. Our interviews are typically pretty laid back and we talk to candidates in a very conversational tone. We are just as interested in who they are as a person as we are in their skills and experience.

Other than strong software engineering/development experience, what does Tandem look for on a candidate’s resume? What makes an applicant stand out as someone you want to interview?
I love resumes that are easy to read and aren’t littered with long winded roles or responsibilities. Keep it short and to the point and save the details for your interview. As a designer, I’m also looking for attention to detail. I like when people take their opportunities seriously, which means running spell check, making sure links work and that you are proud of what you present. 

Do you ever consider candidates without medical device experience? What advice do you have for someone trying to break into the field at Tandem?
Absolutely. I am more concerned about skills, experience and work ethics than I am with knowledge in the medical space. I didn’t know anything about diabetes or medical device design when I applied, but I learned as much as I could before my interview. If you want to break into medical, do your research. Specifically at Tandem, knowing the basics of diabetes and the products we provide is a great start.

What mistakes do you see candidates making during the interview process?
Here’s my short list of mistakes I often see and how to avoid them.

  1. The candidate is not prepared. Make sure your resume or portfolio is interview ready. Research the company and know their products and services. Bring extra resumes. Have at least one question to ask at the end of the interview to show you’re interested.
  2. The candidate does not seem interested Maintain good eye contact. Read and match the body language of the interviewer. Ask follow-up questions to show you’re engaged. Ask about the position and the team you’ll be working on. Remember your please and thank yous.
  3. The candidate talks too much Remember that an interview is a conversation and not just a monologue about how great you are. Find ways to finish your answer with a question or segue that engages the interviewer.

What characteristics do most successful Software Engineers have in common?
The ability to adapt to not only projects, but to people and personality types. We work with several other teams throughout the organization and it’s essential that we learn how to effectively communicate and present our work and ideas outside our core team.

What’s the coolest things someone will learn/get to work on by coming to work at Tandem?
They get to help shape the future of pump therapy and the surrounding technology to help make diabetes easier to manage. We are improving people’s lives and that alone is one of my favorite reasons to work here.

Any final words of advice for professionals seeking a Software Engineering role at Tandem?
Be professional, but be yourself. As I mentioned earlier, we are just as interested in who you are as a person as we are in your skills and experience.

Find out about careers at Tandem here.

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From time to time, we may pass along: suggestions, tips, or information about other Tandem Insulin Pump user experiences or approaches to the management of diabetes. However, please note individual symptoms, situations, circumstances and results may vary. Please consult your physician or qualified health care provider regarding your condition and appropriate medical treatment. Please read the Important Safety Information linked below before using a Tandem Diabetes Care product.

Important Safety Information