Identity, Stability, Lifestyle: Why FishingBooker’s Diaspora Decided to Stay

FishingBooker Recruiter Vedrana Gnjatić knows there’s one question she’ll never be able to avoid when she tells people that she relocated from Australia back to the Balkans: “But why?!”

“Serbians who were born and raised here, and haven’t lived elsewhere, automatically know that I’m not ‘one of them,’ even though I speak the language and was raised with plenty of Balkan culture in my household,” she says. “People have reacted in all sorts of ways – from slight confusion to straight-up asking what’s wrong with me for coming back!”

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Bringing Work Home – 3 Weeks In

On March 9, our team reached a milestone here in Belgrade – we were now a 100-person company! A week later, our office was empty. Initially planning to work from home for a week and see how the new coronavirus was spreading locally, we, like so many other companies in the world, had actually become “remote” overnight. 

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Busting Bugs and Managing Disasters – How we Tackle Stability

Nobody – and nothing – is perfect. Anyone who deals with the inner workings of a website knows all too well that bugs are a fact of life. But managing a site that’s used by thousands of people and processes hundreds of bookings in a day means we need to be quick to identify these issues and act on them. 

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Forget “Typical Days”: What’s Customer Happiness at FishingBooker really like?

How do you describe a day in the life of the Customer Happiness team? You come into work, sit in your spot, put your headphones on, and steel yourself for a deluge of emails? Finally, you call it a day, ready for it all to start again tomorrow?

No.

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How We Solved Trip-Specific Availability

Sometimes, the best way to solve a problem is to take everything apart and start again.

Usually, we go for the alternative. With a large inventory and endless growth ideas, we use our engineering resources very carefully. That means building on what we have or, if we’re introducing a new way of doing things, starting with a minimum viable product, testing, and iterrating. This helps us make smart decisions without letting individual projects spiral out of control.

But when we set out to improve the way our calendar works for scheduling fishing trips, we realized that the single best course of action was to go back to the drawing board. Here’s why, and what our engineers did next. 

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FishingBooker Visits Google’s Connected Consumer Lab

Albert Einstein famously said, “Once you stop learning, you start dying.” Sure, some people might disagree with the literal truth of this (as dark as a life without learning sounds). But there’s no doubt that it rings loud and clear for digital companies. Our world is changing so fast that relying on “yesterday’s knowledge” is a recipe for disaster. 

That’s why a crucial part of working at FishingBooker is building your personal skills and keeping on top of industry trends. And what better way to learn than straight from the horse’s mouth? Last month Stefan, Marko, Aleksandar, and Petar got their school caps on and traveled all the way from Belgrade to Google’s Academy in London. Their aim: to uncover new data about how people interact with different technologies. Here’s how it went. 

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Debugging Gender Stereotypes – FishingBooker’s Female Coders

Walk the corridors of FishingBooker’s offices, and one thing you’ll notice is the mixture of people around you. We base our operations in Serbia, and our employees come from as far afield as Russia, Peru, Australia, just to name a few.

When it comes to the distribution of men and women, it can look like some departments are even intentionally counteracting the “typical” gender balance for that field. Nowhere more so than in the Engineering Team.

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Things I Never Thought I’d Learn from Living in Belgrade

Moving from a small, relatively-unknown town in the middle of England to a small, relatively-unknown country in the middle of Southeast Europe wasn’t something that I ever thought I’d end up doing. I also never thought I’d end up working as a Partner Content Specialist for the world’s largest online platform for booking fishing trips (“the AirBnB of fishing!”, I still often tell my bemused dad). 

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FishingBooker Goes Team Building, Croatia Style!

The old saying goes: Give a FishingBooker-er a fish, and you’ll feed them for a day. Teach a FishingBooker-er to fish, and you’ll feed them for a lifetime. So, in the interest of making sure we don’t starve (and getting to know our business better, having fun, and celebrating the end of a successful high season), every year the whole company goes in search of sun, sea, and fish on our annual fishing trip.

Last year, we all packed off to the UAE for a glitzy big game fishing extravaganza. This year, we stayed closer to home, heading over to the charming town of Rovinj. Located on the Adriatic, this small Croatian town is the perfect place to wet a line and get some well-deserved relaxation.

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