We start 2022 with an exciting interview with Aman Mitthal, a developer advocate at Draftbit. Aman has been working remotely with Draftbit for the past year and has shared his unique experience working remotely with an American-based tech firm.
Before this, Aman worked as a backend developer for firms in Delhi, where he mastered the skill of developing solutions to modern-day problems.
First, could you tell us a bit about yourself and where you come from, as our readers would like to know a bit about your background?
My background starts with me graduating as a computer science engineer, basically a bachelor of engineering, computer science. I graduated in 2015, and since 2016, I've been working in the IT industry.
Since then, I've been working as a contractor for a long time. I have also worked as a technical writer, and somehow I ended up as an advocate developer earlier this year.
Can you tell us more about the product and what it is all about?
Draftbit is a visual tool to build mobile applications. The ideology or the philosophy behind it is that Draftbit tries to cover both aspects of building mobile applications, like the no-code side and the low code side of it. Hence, we call it pro code.
You can run Draftbit inside your web browser; you get a visual interface to build the application screens. You get all the components to connect like the essential fundamental components, navigation presentation, and backend agnostic.
You can bring your backend if you'd like. For example, AWS, Super Base or some other like Airtable. They all share this paradigm of sharing data for rest API, and Draftbit uses rest API as the core of integrating data inside your applications.
It's more like you're creating mobile applications for your businesses, especially as a founder or developer using Draftbit.
They say that there is an underlying technology that Draftbit uses, which is open source. It's based on react native, an open-source framework for mobile applications.
Who is your target market, and how do you get your customers?
Our targeted market is most people looking to build mobile applications which don't know code or don't want to code or people with time constraints. They want to develop applications for their businesses and launch them as soon as possible.
What industry do your clients come from?
Most of our clients are founders of their businesses OR executives who either work for agencies or are freelancers OR contract developers who want to build applications for their clients.
We cater to a wide range of industries and can work with any client.
What's been the one constant feedback or the critical feedback that you got from the clients that have helped you reshape the product.
We have a robust online community of Draftbit users. So that's like our main interface to talk to our community members who either use our product or want to use our product.
There are different areas of getting feedback. Most of the time, our clients are looking to integrate their existing product or design, and that's the most common feedback.
For example, one of the areas is like integrating data because, without data, your application is nothing.
People often come to us with half of their APIs, or they might be using their backend service that produces a coarse database. So we try to integrate as much or support as many services as we can.
How has the pandemic affected Draftbit?
Draftbit has undergone a bit of a transition in the past couple of years. We have reshaped the old products and have now focused on new products.
The focus has now shifted to picking a niche market rather than chasing the whole lot. Over the past few months, we have also grown as a team and see it only getting bigger and better.
What would you say are three skills required to succeed in your field?
Working as a developer advocate, it's essential to communicate well with your team.
Especially if you're working remotely, I believe in over-communication. And that's one of the reasons I think I've been surviving this remote adventure that I'm on. So, it would help if you communicate with your team members.
If you're working under one domain, you have to ask questions and get answers.
Secondly, it is essential to be self-motivated to work in this remote culture. Self-motivation is not just some kind of love for technology or love for the people you are working with, but also having a broader approach, especially towards your product community.
They are the ones who are going to use your product and talk about it beyond the horizons of the internet.
Finally, I think a developer advocate needs to understand the clients' pain points and their strengths and skills. Then, we need to learn from our experience and create a product keeping in mind the end user's experience.
Given that you have a lot of screen time and’ve been working remotely for the past few years, how do you generate new ideas?
My lifelong hobby has been reading books. I read a lot, but I'm more conscious about what I'm reading nowadays. Reading does help me a lot, especially when I need to generate new ideas.
I had a book blog back in the day where I published posts and shared my ideas.
To sum up finally, any books you would recommend our readers to read?
Yea definitely, a book that helped me and inspired me early in my career was Obstacle is the way by Ryan holiday. It helped me shape my mentality and changed my perspective on viewing obstacles. So there you go, do give it a read.