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A new challenge, unique opportunities, and Laura Rodriguez’s engineering journey at DoorDash

October 25, 2022

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Raj Prashad

When Laura Rodriguez thought about the next steps in her engineering career nearly four years ago, she was ready for a new challenge and wanted to join a company where she could make an impact in the work she did.

“One thing I really wanted to do was understand the consumer side of things. I wanted to understand  the business perspective of what drives us to work on a specific feature over other features rather than just working on pushing out code,” Laura said. “During my interview process with DoorDash I enjoyed the opportunity to wear multiple hats. I got a really good sense for collaboration, and for moving quickly. The logistics space, specifically, is an unsolved problem because there are so many open-ended challenges that are extremely daunting. There’s no shortage of complex, engaging projects to work on.”

As a Staff Software Engineer, iOS at DoorDash, Laura has spent the last few years working in the logistics Dasher area of our business, helping create navigation and engagement solutions for every moment of the Dasher experience. She’s also been instrumental in rolling out features such as dark mode, which evolved from an idea during a company Hackathon. 

“Hackathons are pretty unique here at DoorDash because we’ve been able to take an idea to full production,” Laura said. “This was early on, when apps began adopting dark mode and we knew that dashers spend a lot of time on the road, especially in the winter, making deliveries at night. So we developed a quick prototype and I told my manager we really should get it into production. I got the sign off from my manager and worked with designers to come up with a delightful experience of dark mode. We got it fully developed and I was able to project manage and drive it end-to-end, develop all the code, and work to get Android on board as well.”

Integrated into the dasher side of the business means Laura’s team has gleaned deep insights through our flagship employee program, WeDash, where our salaried U.S., Canada, and Australia employees collectively use our Dasher app to complete deliveries and support existing merchants.

“My team looks a lot at the feedback from WeDashes,” Laura said. “All of the issues and feedback that our people uncover goes into our backlog for prioritization, and we work from there to figure out the root causes. The WeDash program is incredibly helpful in identifying and leading to solutions for these issues.” 

At DoorDash, the opportunities are endless for our team members to own their career growth, which comes in many different forms. For Laura, that has taken shape in a variety of ways, such as working through our Elevate program, which is designed for women and non-binary employees of color to accelerate their leadership development through sponsorship, coaching, and community. During the program, participants are paired with an Executive Sponsor and an External Leadership Coach. Growth at DoorDash also has meant working on projects inside and outside of her normal day-to-day functions. 

“Every time I’ve talked to leadership about an idea and the reasons we should work on it, the answer has always been, ‘How can I help?’ I’ve never found red tape or blockers.

"Having opportunities to work on these really big projects is something I haven’t experienced anywhere else. It’s amazing to feel this level of engagement to the team, the company, and to the end user.”
- Laura Rodriguez, Staff Software Engineer, iOS

Ownership at work also means owning her work/life integration, where Laura currently enjoys the flexibility to work from home and come into the office to collaborate with her colleagues.

“I live in Mountain View, and before the pandemic I worked in our San Francisco office. I was commuting an hour and a half each way, every day, which is insane to think about now,” Laura said. “Getting those hours back in my day has been amazing. It is empowering to have the flexibility to work at home heads down in development, or join my colleagues in the office for a meeting or attend our team-wide ‘WeDash and lunch’ events. And outside of work hours, I snooze my notifications unless I’m on call and instead I am intentional in spending time with my family. Because of our flexible work opportunities, I can, for example, work from Portland and spend time with my nephew for a few days.”

As Laura continues to build her career at DoorDash, she also sees a runway for our business to continue evolving. 

“When I joined DoorDash, we were primarily  thinking about deliveries, mostly food. But I understood that our plans were longer term,” Laura said. “Our main focus was Marketplace, and now we have white-label deliveries, groceries and pharmacies, and more. So I’m really excited about our company expanding into new verticals, and leveraging our logistics engine beyond just deliveries. Come join us!”

If you’re excited about the opportunities to work on impactful projects, own your career growth, and to be part of the future of DoorDash, check out open positions today.

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