Profiles in Nerdery: Kelly Lamkins

Every month we feature one of our Nerds and have them share a little bit about themselves and what they love to do both inside and outside of The Nerdery. Today we’re highlighting Kelly Lamkins, Principal Quality Assurance (QA) Engineer at our Minneapolis office.
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Profiles in Nerdery: Laura Briggs, Dog Rescuer Extraordinaire

Every so often we like to feature one of our Nerds and have them share a little bit about themselves and what they love to do both inside and outside of The Nerdery. Continue reading Profiles in Nerdery: Laura Briggs, Dog Rescuer Extraordinaire

Dine at The Nerdery for the Perfect Cause

You’re invited to a semi-formal, four-course dinner and silent auction presented by The Nerdery and Extra Life Nerds on Saturday, October 17 at 5 p.m. at The Nerdery’s Bloomington office.

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Cyber Security & Data Breach Facts at a Glance [Infographic]

Cyber security has been a hot button issue lately, for good reason. But how do hackers gain to access to databases? And who do they typically target? Read on to learn little-known facts about cyber security, and exactly how costly data breaches can be.

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The Future of Windows 10 and HoloLens

Microsoft clarified their vision for Windows 10 and provided the world with a glimpse of what is on the horizon for Windows development in an announcement made late last month. From unifying development across their diverse hardware platforms to unveiling a whole new way of interacting with apps, Microsoft is taking bold steps forward to empower developers to dream, build and deliver apps to their consumers.

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Digital PM Summit preview w/speakers Megan Wilker and Kurt Schmidt

This podcast is a conversation about digital project management with two leaders in the field: Clockwork COO Megan Wilker and Kurt Schmidt, Director of Project Management here at The Nerdery – both invited to speak at today’s Digital PM Summit in Austin, Texas – no spoilers in this preview. Kurt also talks with Megan about the growing community-of-peers she founded called the Twin Cities Interactive Project Management Meetup.


How big data can help your business, big or small

In recent years, you’ve probably heard a lot about “big data” or Apache Hadoop but little of it  has been enlightening or inspiring (maybe a bit mysterious like a good twist to a movie). Big data is really just a buzz  word for now, but it’s what we use when we’re talking about a collection of large and complex data sets that are analyzed to reveal patterns. Some say it’s solving big problems for big businesses like Google, US Bank, and other large enterprises out there. Some say it’s too complicated for “an ordinary developer” to do. We’ll try to answer some of these questions, dispel some of these myths, and most importantly, show you how you and your business can use big data to solve your problems… big or small.

“Try turning what you used to see as a trash can into real money for your business.”

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New iTunes Connect Analytics Will Revolutionize iOS App Marketing

Every marketing professional that works with iOS mobile apps will receive the gift that keeps on giving this fall – the gift of insight over their conversion funnel, granted by analytics data that you do not have access to today.

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The Ten Most Notable Features of iOS 8 [Infographic]

Anticipation for Apple’s iOS 8 update launching this fall is a lot like a rocket’s launch-day – with everyone scrambling to make the necessary preparations before take-off. As we observe the progress from mission control, we’re seeing a new world of possibilities for iOS appstronauts to create new and interesting mobile experiences.

In prep for the big launch-day we’ve created this visual countdown of the 10 most notable features of iOS 8 for you to share with the appstronauts in your life.  Continue reading The Ten Most Notable Features of iOS 8 [Infographic]

Newb Insights: Volume 1

Newb Badge

I have started four different jobs in the past three years. That’s not a stat I’m proud of, and I’m sure my one-job-for-life grandpa shifted in his grave as I wrote that opening line. Sorry, gramps. The positive spin is that my recent history makes me something of a veteran newbie and connoisseur of onboarding processes.

Based on past experience, I expected my first days at The Nerdery to fall into one of two distinct categories – Chaos or Order. The Chaos onboarding plan is basically, “Here’s your computer. There’s the fire. Have fun!” The Order process involves phrases like, “You will spend the next 45 minutes reviewing the Harassment Policy before taking a quiz.” Awesome.

The Nerdery falls into neither category, which was my first clue that this place is doing much more than simply developing world-class interactive solutions. They have the crazy idea you are an adult human being and an asset who can transcend your job title and make a difference. That means not throwing you into the fire without ample support and training. That also means not tailoring the onboarding to such a low common denominator that they’re wasting everyone’s time.

It only took me a few days to learn The Nerdery is treating Newbs better than anywhere else I’ve worked. I say this not because they are paying me and not because Ryan Carlson is holding a Nerf gun to my head (he is). Rather, I volunteered to write this post because potential future employees should know the accolades and boasts on the website aren’t simply window dressing or gimmicks.

Even before I stepped in the door on day one, I already had a team of people looking out for me – an advocate, a team lead, a mentor, a development manager, and a Nerd buddy. My support system grew exponentially during the first week because The Nerdery designed their onboarding that way and because my fellow co-Presidents are cool, empowered, and interested in seeing their colleagues succeed. By the start of week two, I felt as welcome as Norm walking into the “Cheers” bar.

Feel free to be skeptical. I know you’ve all heard the “Culture! Best place to work! We love people!” company pitches before. Many, many businesses talk that talk and put their best face forward on their websites. Fewer businesses, like The Nerdery, make the necessary effort to walk that walk.

It’s not all rainbows and puppy dogs between these walls – although there are a lot of puppy dogs. It’s still work. And work is work is work. The Nerdery is a business, and as with any business, you are an employee being paid to do tasks, log time, fight through tough projects, occasionally overextend yourself, and deal with clients. You’ll get that everywhere.

But companies also control how they want to build their environments, tools, processes, and resources around that core of doing work, and those choices have major impacts on employee happiness.

Among the many messages driven home during my Newb week, the most refreshing one for me was that failure is an option. The Nerdery understands that projects can go wonky in a million different ways, and we’re all going to stumble and fall. Again: we’re human. The question is how we deal with those situations, how we communicate those issues, and how we rely on our supportive colleagues.

That big warm hug was very reassuring during a week when most newbies are nervous, unsure, uncomfortable, and over-eager to impress.