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Created on 19.10.2020

Coding and programming language

Which programming languages are “spoken” at PostFinance? We ask three PostFinance employees. We also ask them to tell us about what their IT jobs at PostFinance entail, and the opportunities for further training.

Which programming languages are actually used at PostFinance and what for?

NameShort descriptionSpecific scope of application at PostFinance 
Name
Java
Short description

Created in 1995, Java is a relatively young programming language that is based on the syntax of programming languages C and C++.

Java is particularly useful for developing platform-independent applications. 

Specific scope of application at PostFinance 
  • Program components in the back end
  • Development of Android apps
Name
JavaScript
Short description
JavaScript was developed to display dynamic HTML pages via web browser. JavaScript is usually processed on the client side directly via the web browser. JavaScript has little in common with the Java programming language.
Specific scope of application at PostFinance 
Front end (web) such as e-finance, The link will open in a new window postfinance.ch, e-payment, Valuu, and other online applications.
Name
TypeScript
Short description
TypeScript is a superset of JavaScript developed by Microsoft that can be used to program JavaScript with a type-annotated and class-based approach. Because TypeScript is compiled into JavaScript, the result can be run in any JavaScript-capable system (browser, web server, etc.). TypeScript is an open-source project developed by Microsoft on GitHub.
Specific scope of application at PostFinance 
Program components in the front end and clients that are integrated locally
Name
C++
Short description
C++ is a high-level programming language standardized by ISO, which was designed as a multi-purpose language and supports several programming styles, such as object-oriented, generic and procedural programming. C++ enables efficient and machine-oriented programming as well as programming at a high level of abstraction. 
Specific scope of application at PostFinance 
Back-end applications
Name
Python
Short description
Python is a dynamically typed, multi-paradigm programming language. It is suitable for artificial intelligence (AI) and deep learning, making it the language of data science. 
Specific scope of application at PostFinance 
  • Data analysis and evaluations,
  • server-side on Linux servers that are used to automate processes using scripts
Name
Swift
Short description
Swift is a programming language from Apple for creating iOS and Mac apps. 
Specific scope of application at PostFinance 
Development of mobile apps (iOS)
Name
PL/SQL
Short description

PL/SQL is a programming language for Oracle databases developed by IBM in the 1960s.

Specific scope of application at PostFinance 
Subroutines that can be executed on the corresponding PL/SQL databases (e-banking)
Name
Groovy
Short description
 Based on Java
Specific scope of application at PostFinance 
for smaller projects such as the automation of test results
Name
Angular
Short description
Angular is a client-side JavaScript web framework that can be used to create web applications.
Specific scope of application at PostFinance 
Front end (web) like e-finance, The link will open in a new window postfinance.ch, e-payment, Valuu, and other online applications.

What are the chances of being able to work with new programming languages?

Pascal Gafner: Different programming languages are used depending on the unit and area of application at PostFinance. The range extends from PL/SQL in database-heavy applications to Java EE/Java/SpringBoot in the back end and Angular/TypeScript in the front end. Of course, our mobile apps are also developed with Swift and Java. There are also currently many projects in progress in which new developments or modernizations of applications are being implemented with the latest languages and stacks.

Denis Roberge: If you really want to get something done at PostFinance, you can create opportunities for yourself to try something new or to work in other units. Smaller projects in process automation, for example, are particularly suitable for the use of a new programming language.

What role does further training play at PostFinance?

Pascal Gafner: At PostFinance you have many options when it comes to further training. I’ve never been told ‘no’ when applying for a workshop, convention or further training. You are encouraged to find suitable further training opportunities for yourself. Internally, we have established communities of practice: if several people at the company decide that a specific subject merits closer attention, they can launch a community of practice independently. They can get together and exchange information on the subject.

For example, in one community of practice we considered how we can implement builds and deployments more efficiently with Docker and Kubernetes, and map them in a delivery pipeline.

This means that we can all benefit from each other's knowledge and experience, and we are able to develop good solutions efficiently.

Denojan Rishikeswaran: Our managers also frequently alert us to exciting further training opportunities. This happened recently for Docker and Kubernetes, for example, which we will be switching to in the near future. Personally, I am currently doing further IT training at a university of applied sciences, which PostFinance has not only approved, but is also co-financing.

How do you ensure that you can understand and communicate with programmers at PostFinance who “speak” different programming languages?

Pascal Gafner: A good example of mutual exchange of information is our internal DevDay, which is a cross-area platform by and for developers. It is held twice a year and gives developers the opportunity to present their work or take a look at the work of other teams. For certain subjects – in addition to the communities of practice already mentioned – I also enjoy lively personal exchange, for example, with Java or Typescript problems.

Which tools and processes do you use?

Pascal Gafner: We currently use products from Atlassian (JIRA, Bitbucket Server, Bamboo, Confluence) and GitLab. As a bank, we have to meet certain requirements, so these are hosted internally and not cloud-based. Thanks to these tools, we can automate processes and benefit from quick feedback and measurable metrics.

About the interviewees

Denojan Rishikeswaran

Denojan Rishikeswaran, Application Manager at PostFinance:  “As an IT specialist at PostFinance, you not only benefit from flexible working hours and training opportunities, but can also always work on new projects internally – in teams that are put together from scratch.”

Application Manager at PostFinance since 2019. Education: computer science with a focus on application developers and software developers (higher technical school). Currently learning: computer science (UAS) with a focus on enterprise computing.

Denis Roberge

Denis Roberge, Business Analyst at PostFinance: “Working as an IT specialist at PostFinance

is particularly exciting, because you help to develop products and services that will later be used by over a million customers. And that’s something people always want to talk to you about, even if they don’t work at the company.”

Business Analyst at PostFinance since 2020. Before that, one and a half years as an external performance tester for PostFinance. Dual studies in telecommunications and media informatics. 

Pascal Gafner

Pascal Gafner, Senior Developer at PostFinance: “At PostFinance, there are many opportunities for further training. I’ve never been told ‘no’ when applying for a workshop, convention or further training.”

Developer in various teams at PostFinance since 2005. Studied business informatics (UAS), continuous further education with CAS, courses, workshops, user groups and self-study.

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