Engineering Happiness For a Different Product

I joined Automattic in 2017 as a WordPress.com Happiness Engineer. After two and a half years, I decided to apply for the WooCommerce rotation. For several months I stopped working in WordPress.com support to learn all about the WooCommerce product and how to support those customers. Rotations are encouraged by Automattic as a great way to widen our skills, get out of our comfort zone, and to get a more in-depth knowledge of Automattic’s products and processes. It’s also an opportunity to get to know more Automatticians and to have a brand new experience while working at the same company.

That’s how in 2020 my adventures in the WooCommerce world started – just in time to help many brick-and-mortar store owners transition to online stores as a way to keep their business operating during the quarantine, compensating for revenue losses, or adding a new stream of income.

Each product, WordPress.com and WooCommerce, have their own challenges and unique experiences.

WordPress.com can be the foundation of pretty much any kind of site. We help users achieve their goals on a wide variety of sites: institutional, blogs, memberships, forums and e-commerce just to give a few examples. This is at the same time challenging and cool as we get to know many different sites and ideas out there. 

Another interesting thing is that we help a lot of users that are building a site for the first time. So one of the important abilities that a WordPress.com Happiness Engineer should seek is to give clear and detailed instructions to customers and/or to point them in the right direction so they can learn how to set up anything they need. It’s always great to see customers getting excited and feeling empowered after accomplishing their first steps then realizing that anyone can build a website. 

On the other hand, WooCommerce has its own level of complexity, considering all the things that involve setting up an online store: shipping, tax, payment gateways, and other things. Plus, we have hundreds of extensions on the WooCommerce.com marketplace which add functionality to stores that have specific logistical, technical, and marketing needs. 

Although there are also customers setting up a WooCommerce store for the first time, we also often help developers and customers that have a more technical background. So the challenge is to get familiar with the extensions and to develop great troubleshooting skills to solve tricky issues that can emerge when using a bunch of different complex extensions together. But fear not! The onboarding process for WooCommerce Happiness Engineers is excellent and can get anyone up to speed pretty quickly alongside the great help from other more experienced Happiness Engineers!

As you can see, working at Automattic means that no matter how long you’ve been working as a Happiness Engineer you will never get bored and you will always have new things to learn. 

Plus, as a Happiness Engineer, you can make a difference during delicate moments, like the one the world is going through now, and be rewarded with beautiful messages from customers like this one:

“OMG!!! I can’t tell you how happy this makes me. I’m a struggling business owner due to COVID-19 and had to close my doors. I’m now trying to operate online to save my business and so I am using WooCommerce as part of this process. THIS IS AMAZING. I could cry. Thank you so very much.”

You can read more about the Happiness Engineer job and find instructions for applying here.

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