João Barbosa and Rafael Lebre had not crossed paths until they joined G2i. Based in Brazil, they were both looking for interesting projects with international companies while maintaining a remote workstyle.
Rafael, a senior software engineer, originally joined in August 2020, while João, a senior frontend developer, found out about the community a year later in March 2021. Within a month of searching for the right contract opportunities, both developers started working at A Place for Mom (APFM), a company that assists families in finding senior care options.
The company combines an online platform with a trusted advisory service to provide families with personalized guidance on senior living arrangements. It was their mission-driven approach that spoke strongly to João. For Rafael who was exploring home care options his aging grandmother, it soon became his personal mission to help come up with solutions for anxiety-inducing process.
APFM initially hired both developers on a short-term basis but soon engaged them longer term after seeing their impact on the company's digital products. Rafael is currently leading the transition of their codebase to React and is responsible for continuous performance optimizations on the APFM website — a critical function since the website's performance affects how easily users can find the right senior care option for their loved ones. João, on the other hand, led the transition from Material UI to a SASS-based UI framework. Today, he is working alongside APFM’s growth team to drive lead generation and chatbot development.
Navigating Challenges, Celebrating Victories, and Embracing Growth
Working remotely with an international organization while living in Brazil came with its fair share of challenges for both João and Rafael. APFM has nearly 2000 employees and a 70-strong Engineering team based in the US who are maintaining complex codebases. It was enough to intimidate any prospective developer, especially freelance contractors, who were expected to start working effectively from day one.
João and Rafael were both vetted experts in frontend development and React but neither would claim to possess extensive experience in driving organic growth through SEO or running conversion optimization experiments. However, their development expertise and determination to learn and grow continuously enabled them to devise solutions to address APFM's performance issues. Their dedication is evident in the significantly improved page load times and commendable user experience of the APFM website.
João introduced a code pattern at APFM to foster more elegant and high-performing code. Rafael, on the other hand, had to tackle image loading challenges that severely affected the site’s Core Web Vitals. So, he devised an unprecedented hack to enhance page load times. Their tenure at APFM proved beneficial, not only for the company but also for João and Rafael individually. Both developers thrived under the guidance and mentorship of Ketan Sawhney, APFM’s VP of Engineering.
In our conversations, João emphasized the significant impact Ketan's solutions-oriented approach had on their collaboration. Ketan showed him how to delegate effectively and enriched his critical thinking skills. They found a shared enthusiasm for learning GraphQL and upskilling on web performance which helped them move faster, but also enjoy the work at hand.
Rafael highlights that APFM gave him the opportunity to work with Next.js in production, and excitingly enough, enabled him to make a significant contribution to the Next.js repository in his first week. His experience has expanded his horizons, and he finds his niche, pushing him to participate in WebPerfWG calls — a global platform where experienced performance developers establish new standards and APIs for web browsers.
João, Rafael, and the G2i Community
The G2i community is thankful and proud to have members like João and Rafael who are tremendously dedicated to their clients and are always willing to share their expertise. So we asked them what they love about G2i.
“I've never been a fan of code tests because I prefer to focus on sharpening my real-life dev skills rather than skills for coding interviews. However, the G2i vetting process managed to provide a code test that was both challenging enough to prove my proficiency and resembled a real-life coding challenge that I felt comfortable with." said Rafael. It’s that same vetting process that ensures the G2i community is filled with knowledgeable developers who can engage in technical discussions and meaningful cultural exchanges. The transparency and open communication inside the community is what fosters a collaborative environment.
On the other hand, João mentioned that G2i lets him fully focus on his work while we take care of administrative tasks, finding clients, and ensuring timely payment. Working alongside talented G2i engineers at APFM was a bonus all on its own.
If their story inspires you and you’re seeking senior and frontend developers like João and Rafael with proven expertise and an amazing work ethic, then G2i might just be the right fit for your company. Access top talent without geographical barriers. Learn more here.